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Sat Aug 26 2017 23:58:30

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

By: Ina Steiner

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You can count on shipping costs to go up each year, and January is the favorite month for USPS, UPS, and FedEx to raise rates. Blogger D. Eadward Tree (a pseudonym for a magazine-industry insider) says the USPS aims to raise shipping rates on January 21, 2018. 

"The USPS will raise rates for both market-dominant mail (such as First Class and Marketing Mail) and competitive mail (such as Priority Mail) on Jan. 21, 2018, postal officials told mailing-industry representatives this week," he wrote on the Dead Tree Edition blog on Saturday.

The USPS has leeway for how much it can raise competitive mail rates - popular with small online sellers - and Tree said the USPS is most likely to file the new rates with the Postal Regulatory Commission in October.

He also delves into the impact on market-dominant rates, which are currently limited by an inflation-based cap, but that could change, as he reminds his readers. That's thanks to the PRC 10-year review, which you can also read more about here.




Comments (22) | Permalink

Readers Comments

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Sun Aug 27 08:27:08 2017

So what else is new? We have come to expect this every year while eBay and other sites push "free" shipping and supposedly penalizing sellers in search who don't offer it.  Meanwhile, the Chinese continue to be subsidized (epackets).

I will sometimes give free shipping for a First class item that weighs under 8 ounces or a very expensive item, but otherwise, the buyer pays for the shipping.

I applaud sites like Poshmark who seem to understand that there is no such thing as free shipping and charge a reasonable flat rate to buyers.  The rate appears to work for sellers too.  Kudos to Poshmark.  I've yet to read one complaint about Poshmark's shipping model.


Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

by: pace306 This user has validated their user name.

Sun Aug 27 09:36:53 2017

Rexford- my buyers pay for shipping on Amazon too with no complaints at all.

It seems to only be eBay crying 24/7 about free shipping so that IT will seem competitive- out of their sellers pockets.

It's not any different then 60 day returns - or any other program - as long as eBay corp doesn't pay for it - it's all ok.

Shame on eBay.

Criminals till the end.  

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

by: mcposty This user has validated their user name.

Sun Aug 27 11:20:16 2017

Usps will raise itself right out of competition.

It will also eventually cause cheap savings to go out the window except for large companies who get special deals thus small sellers are constantly being harassed by mail deliverer.

Why doesn't usps have a discount program for small sellers? We ship more than the average person and the usps would be wise to try and retain our business.

Soon..it'll be better to just use a different carrier.

I hate the usps..thieves and traitors to the United states.

They are also traitors to hard working Americans by basically creat8 g amazon success. Without usps amazon would have never taken off.

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

This user has validated their user name. by: RKTOYS

Sun Aug 27 11:36:42 2017

The only reason you don't hear complaining about shipping on Amazon is that there's no way to contact you.  Both eBay and Amazon buyers are getting poorer and poorer and poorer.  That's bad enough on its own but having to carry the Chinese on my back is too much.  Can't sell anything these days without somebody else getting all of the benefit (and then some) from my labor.

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

by: angryllama This user has validated their user name.

Sun Aug 27 16:47:37 2017

I cannot be the ONLY ONE here who passed 3rd grade math with colors flying.   USPS is currently the Low Price Leader when it comes to parcel packages from any USA zip to any OTHER USA zip.  Bar none.  UPS and FedEx both have their place,  BUT neither them has any rate for less than ONE full Pound and even AFTER that threshold they BOTH go up by FULL pound increments.  If anyone wants to RANT about prices.... your ire should be directed at UPS and Fed-Ex.  Even then such upset would be ill conceived.   One of THE BEST options for 2 pounds on up.... especially if to a DISTANT USA zip is the Hybrid Service called Fed-Ex SmartPost.  YOU drop off your package at one of the THOUSANDS of FedEx / Kinko's and THEY drag your package cross-country and HAND IT OFF to the USPS post office closest to the final destination.  Usually 15 to 30 percent UNDER Priority Mail OR Ground Service from EITHER FedEx or UPS.  This is enhanced if the package is Relatively LIGHT vs it's volume as there is (currently) no surcharge for Dimensional Weight.  
As to Dimensional Weight I think THOUSANDS of eBay sellers are likely to get SHOCKED in the next few months as the USPS has finally elected to begin AUDITING package REAL SCALE Weights and DImensions vs. the LYING DATA entered by Smart-*ss sellers who think they are getting over on the post office by saying a 5 pound package weighs 2 pounds or that a 14 x 14 x 12 box is 8 x 8 x 8.  USPS is finally charging DIMENSIONAL WEIGHT on even Priority Packages if the DESTINATION is Beyond Zone 5 from the shipper.  Yes, my examples are based on sellers BRIGHT ENOUGH to never stand on line at the post office when it is sooooo much easier to own and USE an accurate scale, Tape-Measure, and their own computer / Printer to generated ACCURATE and LEGIBLE postage-paid/shipping labels.  

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

This user has validated their user name. by: The End

Sun Aug 27 16:55:56 2017

I actually ADD an ounce to the Real Weight just to be sure they can't call me a cheater.
So far , smooth sailing......

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

This user has validated their user name. by: RKTOYS

Sun Aug 27 22:05:37 2017

Hey, I weigh everything with a scale at home too.  That the USPS has per-ounce pricing on the first pound doesn't help when everything you ship weighs a pound or more.  It sucks that we had the online discount rate taken away and it sucks that rates go up every year to keep subsidizing the Chinese, the same Chinese that are undercutting us with knockoffs direct from the 3rd shift at their factories.

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Mon Aug 28 02:44:46 2017

@rktoys

The commercial rate was not taken away completely.  They just use to also have two levels of the commercial rate and they did away with one of them.  Online shippers still get a discount over retail.

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Mon Aug 28 07:34:45 2017

I'd be willing to bet money that within 5 years that the First Class rate for domestic packages will completely go away. It will be Priority or nothing.  Just watch.

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

This user has validated their user name. by: VV

Mon Aug 28 07:52:09 2017

If it sells for less than $20 and weighs more than a pound to ship it doesn't get listed.

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

by: mcposty This user has validated their user name.

Mon Aug 28 10:37:48 2017

Yea usps still has less than a lb shipping but raising the rate every year soon that will not be anything.

Usps broke the rules..in order to raise rates they had to not force people to use expedited service like priority mail. They did exactly that by making parcel select cost more than priority.

Where is parcel select? It's supposed to be cheaper than priority.

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

by: epuise This user has validated their user name.

Mon Aug 28 10:53:32 2017

AMAZON will BENEFIT from any & all ship rate HIKES. They are second to the Chinese Sellers in cheap negotiated rates. eBay Sellers who ship w/ the rates THEY can get will be priced out of the market.  

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

by: epuise This user has validated their user name.

Mon Aug 28 10:57:38 2017

The new A & B & Medium & Large Flat Rate boxes, east to west coast, are SELDOM a better 'deal' than WEIGHT BASED, and, the 'fixed' shape OFTEN is TOO LARGE or TOO SMALL. The USPS 'jiggered' the prices so that I MUST 'make my own boxes' or 'store boxes' of odd & larger sizes. All of that 'trying to ship reasonably' is ALSO costing me 'man hours'. FURTHER eating into SLIM profits. WHEN will 'IT' stop ? WHEN will eBay GIVE US A BREAK & NOT charge the FVF on POSTAGE ? eBay BENEFITS w/ EVERY rate hike. For doing NOTHING.

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

by: dander This user has validated their user name.

Mon Aug 28 12:11:30 2017

Its the cost of doing business. It sucks but we can't do much about it. change your inventory mix.

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Mon Aug 28 13:00:21 2017

@epuise

That isn't entirely correct.  While Amazon does have some good rates with particular carriers, they don't with others.  USPS being one of them they don't.  FCP Domestic is the same as every other online site out there.  FCP International, Ebay has a much better discounted rate that Amazon.  For 2017 Amazon initially did a great job negotiating PM rates, but lost that rate shortly thereafter for a contract breach with USPS.  

I don't know about other carriers as I only use USPS 99.9% of the time.

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Mon Aug 28 13:05:16 2017

USPS for small packages is hard to beat in pricing and service for me.  I primarily use FCP Domestic and International.  While the rates have certainly gone up in most weights and classes, the international rates have been hit the hardest and have close to killed off my international business.

But the domestic rates are not that bad for FCP.  While some weights went UP, others went DOWN.  I like the combination of the same rates for 1-4 oz and 5-8 oz.  Makes my life easier in pricing my shipping and in the packaging process for those light weight items.

There is good and bad in all these rate changes.  But it is part of doing business.  Vendors raise rates from time to time.  That is a guarantee.  

I think it is harder on those that sell OOAK and vintage stuff.  But just my opinion.

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

This user has validated their user name. by: RKTOYS

Mon Aug 28 14:04:22 2017

"change your inventory mix"
Yep, just like the malls that went all-clothing-all-the-time in response to absentee landlords jacking up rents and are now ghost towns.

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

This user has validated their user name. by: RKTOYS

Mon Aug 28 14:12:18 2017

It's not the rates rising that's the problem, it's why they're rising.  Why are American taxpayers paying more for postage to subsidize Chinese freeloaders?  What right do foreigners have to handouts from the US government and American businesses?  And that's before those worthless swindlers pollute our market with not just fake but outright dangerous products.  It has to stop.

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

by: Tiffee Jasso This user has validated their user name.

Mon Aug 28 17:49:36 2017

Sellers are paying higher Postal rates to make up for the losses the USPS takes delivering millions of Chinese sellers' packages. This is not equality for Americans or Fair Trade. I think someone needs to start a Class Action law suit and haul the Post Office (who states they are a separate entity from the US Government) to court for discrimination and violation of Fair Trade law. In the meantime, tariffs and delivery charges need to be paid on every Chinese import that enters this country.
It is my opinion that Sellers at this time are forced to buy the knife that the  cuts their income and site visibility by a considerable amount.  

Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January   Sellers Should Brace for USPS Rate Hike in January

by: mcposty This user has validated their user name.

Mon Aug 28 23:55:54 2017

We need to unitell against the usps and their Chinese rates.

Pickets..lawsuits for fair trade and treason against those responsible.

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