In addition, ShipStation has five different levels of plans—all of which come with a free DYMO Endicia account to provide a value-add for current and up-and-coming online business owners.
“While we are primarily focused on the postal service and all of its different sub-features, we really depend on companies like ShipStation to fit into applications of partners who offer ERP systems or multi-carrier shipping systems alongside the postal service,” explained Amine Khechfe, General Manager and Co-founder, DYMO Endicia.
In return, DYMO Endicia, which offers online postage and shipping solutions for online sellers and warehouse shippers, becomes the United States Postal Service (USPS) expert for ShipStation, taking care of the logistics so ShipStation can focus on their core product and customer base.
“ShipStation has taken our technology and integrated it into their great user experience,” said Rick Hernandez, Senior Manager of Business Development for DYMO Endicia. “And in their environment, they’ve taken the best of both worlds. We make it easy to work with the postal service and integrate that technology into what you do and they make it easy to integrate into all of these order management systems, all of these online shopping carts—they basically allow you to connect the postal service to the ecommerce solution that an online professional seller needs.”
Despite nationwide reports of eliminated USPS jobs and many businesses questioning the existence of the service provider five years from now, the growth of ecommerce validates the postal service company’s position in the market.
“The e-commerce part of the business and the e-shipping—that is the growing part of the postal service business,” said Khechfe. “As ecommerce goes up 45 percent in the next four years, the postal service will take a big chunk of that. The postal service is less expensive than all the other carriers because they already deliver to each household. And not only that, but they pass that rate to the shippers. And that is why you see some of the larger companies growing their volume with the postal service. So in the last year, the postal service shipping business actually gained market share points against the private carriers. And because of that, the postal service is putting a lot of money and effort around improved tracking and shipping which is really where the Endicia growth story is: focused on B2C, shipments under five pounds—the sweet spot of the postal service—and the growth part of the business,” confirmed Khechfe.
In addition to improving tracking data provided to customer, logistics service providers must also be able to release orders faster and package items in a much different way as labor costs must be managed more quickly, Reader added.
“Relationships are going to have to change as the 3PLS are feeling the impact of the growth in ecommerce,” he continued. “Either the 3PLS are going to have to make investments themselves in facilities that handle e-commerce business efficiently or they are going to have to engage in contracts with their retail partners that are longer in term. And that is the only way to get the efficiencies out of the distribution center that are required to service the mobile customer in ecommerce,’ said Reader.
Actions speak louder
In order to control the factors that affect the changing landscape of retail, the retailer must have clear visibility within their supply and demand chain. In addition, all customer touch points need to be connected and in real time as possible, referenced Reader. The retailer must also have an intimate understanding of their individual customer—their needs, and engagement—to respond according.
Systems must also be in place to control key cost drivers. To do that, it will take more than automation—while very beneficial to cut costs and improve supply chain efficiency—for all retailer and supply chain players to understand and prepare for the changing multi-channel commerce landscape.