2,760 Parcels Were Shipped Every Second in 2018

In the latest Pitney Bowes Parcel Shipping Index, the report discovered global parcel volume reached 87 billion in 2018, up from 74 billion parcels in 2017 and the highest since the Index began.

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In the latest Pitney Bowes Parcel Shipping Index, the report discovered global parcel volume reached 87 billion in 2018, up from 74 billion parcels in 2017 and the highest since the Index began. Despite global trade tensions, the reports predicts that this figure will more than double within the next six years, reaching 200 billion parcels by 2025 with a 13.7% CAGR 2019-2023.

The Pitney Bowes Parcel Shipping Index measures both volume and spend for business-to-business, business-to-consumer, consumer-to-business and consumer consigned shipments with weight up to 31.5 kg (70 lbs.) in 13 major markets, representing 3.7 billion people in U.S., Canada, Brazil, Germany, UK, France, Italy, Norway, Sweden, China, Japan, Australia and India. 

The report found growth of 17% in 2018. On average, there were 23 parcels shipped per person in the 13 major markets last year, and 2,760 parcels shipped every second. Meanwhile, global shipping volume remains on track to surpass 100 billion parcels in 2020 in aggregate across the 13 countries reviewed. China remains the strongest influence on the market with 51 billion parcels shipped in 2018. Excluding China, parcel volume increased by 6 percent, from 34 billion in 2017 to 36 billion in 2018. Global parcel revenue remains strong, reaching $317 billion. 

Key findings include:

  • China’s parcel industry volumes achieved CAGR of 41 percent from 2013-2018. Volume grew 26% year-over-year although this growth has declined from the 48-61 percent growth seen from 2012-16
  • United States ranks highest in the Index for parcel shipping revenue at $119 billion.
  • Brazil sees the second highest year-over-year growth rate in the Index with a 25% increase in year-over-year parcel volume from 2017-18
  • India is experiencing CAGR of 25% in parcel volume 2013-18 and year-over-year growth of 21 percent

“Global parcel revenues continue to benefit from the explosive impact of ecommerce, but it isn’t just online shoppers boosting the industry. We know from our clients’ own behaviors that office sending is increasing, particularly in industries such as IT, Healthcare and Manufacturing. Carriers are trialing new and exciting strategies to deliver the best customer experience, to keep costs down, boost productivity and generate profitability, such as forming partnerships, designing next-generation sending technologies and developing last mile innovation,” says Jason Dies, EVP and Vice President Sending Technology Solutions, Pitney Bowes.

Shipping Index Topline Trends Across Countries

  • China’s Parcel Volume Quadruples that of United States: China (51 billion), the United States (13 billion), and Japan (9 billion) represented the top three countries for parcel shipping volume. Collectively, China, US, and Japan represented 83% of global parcel volume in 2018.
  • United States Tops Shipping Revenue: The United States ranks highest in parcel shipping revenue at $119 billion. China ($91 billion) and Japan ($30 billion) follow.
  • Japanese Parcel Volume is Declining but Revenue Increased: Revenues generated by parcel shipments in Japan currently stand in the top three of all 13 markets studied, despite a slight decline in parcel volume.