Global parcel volume increases 48% in two years since 2014

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Global technology provider Pitney Bowes has announced that its second annual Parcel Shipping Index has revealed a 48% increase in global parcel volume between 2014 and 2016.

According to the report, parcel volume grew from 44 billion parcels in 2014 to 65 billion in 2016, and the increase in growth shows no sign of slowing down, with the Index estimating parcel growth will continue to rise at a rate of 17-28% each year between 2017 and 2021.

The Index measures parcel volume and spend for business-to-business, business-to-consumer, consumer-to-business and consumer consigned shipments with weight up to 31.5kg (70 lb), across 13 major markets including Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Norway, Sweden, the UK and the USA.

China, a new addition to this year’s Index and by far the largest market examined, grew parcel volume by 52% in one year, increasing from 21 billion parcels in 2015 to 31 billion in 2016. But even excluding China’s prolific volumes, the Index forecasts a strong and accelerating pace of growth in parcels throughout the world. On average, the other 12 major markets studied have grown 4.3% annually since 2012 and are projected to grow 4.5-5.4% annually through 2021.

The USA (13 billion) and Japan (9 billion) were also among the largest markets by parcel volume. In terms of investment, the USA ranked highest, spending US$96bn on parcel shipments, followed by China at US$60bn and Japan at US$22bn.

Lila Snyder, executive vice president and president, global e-commerce, Pitney Bowes, said, “The continued rise of e-commerce globally is keeping the parcel shipping market strong through 2021 as consumers are increasingly looking to online shopping for convenience, price and availability of products from around the world. As consumer expectations continue to rise, shipping technology and service providers will need to help retailers and marketplaces meet those demands.”

Results from the Parcel Shipping Index point to rapid growth and last-mile delivery challenges as driving innovation across markets. New trends and emerging technologies, such as parcel lockers, crowd-shipping, on-demand delivery services, evening and weekend delivery and drones, are impacting the customer shipping experience by shortening delivery times, lowering delivery costs and adding flexibility.

Mark Shearer, executive vice president and president, global SMB solutions, Pitney Bowes, said, “Managing the growing demands and navigating the evolving landscape of parcel shipping can be complicated for organizations of all sizes, from large enterprises to small businesses. Digital transformation of a company’s shipping workflow – like the integration of software as a service (SaaS)-based multi-carrier platforms – can help to better enable carrier, timing and cost-efficiencies for companies, as well as improve customer experiences through the addition of tracking capabilities, simplifying and streamlining processes for both senders and recipients.”

August 30, 2017

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, editor-in-chief

Helen has worked for UKi Media & Events for nearly a decade. She joined the company as assistant editor on Passenger Terminal World and since progressed to become editor of five publications, covering everything from aviation, logistics and e-commerce to meteorology. She has a love for travel and property and has redeveloped three houses in three years. When she’s not editing magazines, she’s running around after her two boys and their partner in crime, Pete the pug.

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