Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
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by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Mon June 17 2013 21:45:18

An End to Postal Deliveries at Your Customer's Front Door?

By: Ina Steiner

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Just when you thought it couldn't get worse for small online sellers when it comes to shipping orders to their customers, along comes a congressman from California.

Many small businesses who sell online in lower volumes than their bigger counterparts find services from the U.S. Postal Service cheaper than other carriers. Sellers are continually worried about the impact of higher shipping costs on their ecommerce businesses. And they are already facing the possibility of an end to Saturday delivery.

Now Representative Darrell Issa would like to see the end of delivery at the door, a measure included in a new draft proposal he issued before formally introducing legislation. According to a synopsis, "The legislation will begin to standardize how mail is received around the nation by phasing out the expensive "to the door" delivery of mail, which only a quarter of addresses receive today, in favor of curbside and secure clusterbox delivery - the delivery modes more than 70 percent of the nation already receive."

Issa said the measure would save $4 billion or more annually.

While ecommerce giants such as Amazon, eBay and Google are considering ways to get packages into the hands of customers faster and with more convenience, Issa is looking at ways to scale back. His innovation? Allow the USPS to sell new services - such as fishing licenses.

Tuesday's Newsflash has the full story, let us know what you think of an end to "to the door" delivery.

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Readers Comments

Perminate Link for An End to Postal Deliveries at Your Customer's Front Door?   An End to Postal Deliveries at Your Customer's Front Door?

This user has validated their user name. by: Map

Tue Jun 18 05:50:40 2013

I've been saying it for years... Congress please give several billion Dollars & the entire USPS to Fedex.

...Just give it all to Fedex. They will turn losses into profits.

Those Dirtbags give billions of Dollars away every day like hundreds of Abrams tanks & Cash to the Islamic brother Hood in Egypt.

See... Uncle Sam knows how to makes Terrorist feel safe from the Jews and balance power in the region.

Then if they would just give the USPS & Cash to Fedex it would fix and bring balance to all the problems. This would make Fedex the undisputed Champs with good customer service.

In the same time appeasing millions of lazy union postal employees with a job & benefits with the cherry on top of having Fedex go Union.....joyfully & willfully because Fedex gets it all.

The side affect would then be an arms race between Fedex & UPS. The battle to get business could bring lower shipping cost to customers and still have jobs for the Postal workers.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Map

Tue Jun 18 06:06:01 2013

Walmart does a perfectly good job selling state fishing licences.

Why make other customers stand longer in line at the post office for crap that can be purchased else where. The sales generated by other services will not save the Post office.

Issa is retarded & should be working at walmart or better yet as a mail carrier or...oh I got it Is he working for eBay? can any one check that out? ;)

What is a republican doing in California anyway? How did that happen? specially a tea bagger or really a "Carpet Bagger". crazy.

Perminate Link for An End to Postal Deliveries at Your Customer's Front Door?   An End to Postal Deliveries at Your Customer's Front Door?

by: innerpuppie This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jun 18 07:27:36 2013

What he did't take into consideration with the 'door to door' delivery  being stopped is - how will the disabled and seniors in deplorable climates and those without a vehicle receive their mail? Issa is a boob in the truest sense. He has no idea how his great revelation will affect the average American citizen. I predict that his 'brain storm' won't go far, not at all.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Tue Jun 18 07:41:45 2013

The day that this country starts taking advice from Tea baggers is the day that I think it will be time to expatriate.

Perminate Link for An End to Postal Deliveries at Your Customer's Front Door?   An End to Postal Deliveries at Your Customer's Front Door?

by: FREDDY This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jun 18 08:21:13 2013


Like your idea of charging the elderly ( usually on fixed income) and disabled $24.00 / month for a service they not get for free. Not everyone can make it to the dam clusterbox. Especially in the winter, if you live in northern states. I don't believe to save money - take it out on the old and disabled. Sounds like the gov't found another way to reduce social security and medicare. Kill em off when they try to get the mail.
Had them once. - Hated it. Left packages just sitting on the top. Large boxes just left at the curb.  

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This user has validated their user name. by: Map

Tue Jun 18 08:55:31 2013

@Rexford

Don't go burning your flag just yet. I think The Union is squarely Socialist and in no danger of reverting back. so sad!

What is going to be the end game for the country is extremism but not from the right. The Far left has won a long time ago (by FDR's hand) and the Nation is going to go much further Left. The small minority of Right extremist is just noise and is not swaying the moderate right as some think. The Republicans congress men & senators all might as well just be Democrats as many vote that way. Most Right leaning people have no confidence in them at all.

The larger Left extremist have had their way and the larger moderate left is in compliance while the centrist do nothing at all.

But what none of these groups can stop is the unavoidable.

a major devaluation of the Dollar and Private wealth is going to be hit very hard.

I believe we are all going to witness a new world system come forth and it will not matter if your Left, Center or Right.

Trillions and Trillions of debt can not continue to prop the world as we know it. We all have eyes and are seeing it happen & getting worse more every day.

Perminate Link for An End to Postal Deliveries at Your Customer's Front Door?   An End to Postal Deliveries at Your Customer's Front Door?

by: Mr. Me This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jun 18 10:12:13 2013

Downward spiral......... business goes down , reaction = cut services, more customers leave, cut more services, more customers leave ....... repeat the pattern  ......

Perminate Link for An End to Postal Deliveries at Your Customer's Front Door?   An End to Postal Deliveries at Your Customer's Front Door?

by: Toledo Maude This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jun 18 10:18:37 2013

One of the best thing going for my Midwest based business is Priority Mail east of the Mississippi.  

February’s postal rate increases killed my juicy international business and sales to the West Coast.  

In order to keep Priority Mail rates low to my remaining buyers with 2 to 3 day delivery, ending Saturday deliveries sounds like a great trade-off.  

For customers who live in rural sparsely populated communities, why should the Post Office subsidize your costly mail deliveries when UPS and FedEx wisely do not?

You want Saturday delivery?   Fine pay an extra 5 bucks or more as UPS does?

FedEx delivers residences on Saturday but no residential deliveries on Monday.  

All of us small (tiny) sellers better “wake up and smell the coffee” and keep what little reasonable Postal Office shipping services that are available.  

Perminate Link for An End to Postal Deliveries at Your Customer's Front Door?   An End to Postal Deliveries at Your Customer's Front Door?

by: Moonwishes This user has validated their user name.
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Tue Jun 18 10:19:59 2013

Yep, that's all the elderly and disabled need is to have to pay $1 a day to get their regular dose of junk mail! At times they might get something worthwhile but is the person getting paid the $1 to p/u the mail going to know the difference?

Years back SS made the decision to start direct deposit of all checks instead of sending by mail. I think almost all recipients at this point have been transferred over to direct deposit. I wonder just how much the end of those checks cost the USPS now that they no longer deliver them? And now we can get our IRS tax returns direct deposited, how much did that cost the USPS? And now they are going to take it out on the  people least able to cope with 'cluster boxes'. When I lived in a trailer park for a couple years, I had to walk 3 blocks in snow, rain whatever, daily to get the mail. The mailman never kept the same hours so some days you would find that it would take 2 walks to actually get the mail or standing and waiting for him to finish sorting the mail. It was a pain.

What gets me the most is how they talk about the less snail mail so that the PO is going broke. I'd like to know what they are doing with all the money we sellers pour into their coffers. In one year of selling, I spent more on postage than I would in the rest of my lifetime, and I have now been doing it for 11 years! Things just don't add up for me.

Perminate Link for An End to Postal Deliveries at Your Customer's Front Door?   An End to Postal Deliveries at Your Customer's Front Door?

This user has validated their user name. by: askalice59

Tue Jun 18 10:57:44 2013

I've been getting my mail in a cluster box for a long time. I live in senior housing, though not a senior, and I have no problems with it whatsoever.

The boxes are inset in a small roofed bldg. There is a locked door on the side where the postal carrier can go in behind the boxes to fill them. They place a key in our private mailbox if we have a package and that key unlocks the much bigger boxes. The front of the bldg. is like an alcove so while standing there you are somewhat protected from the weather. We have a community cork board people use to post wants, needs, and events.

As for seniors and handicapped picking up the mail, these older folks like to get out and get their exercise. They can be seen chatting it up with other elderly who might otherwise not have a reason to leave their homes.

I have worked with many handicapped individuals and they either want to be independent and do things for themselves just like the rest of us, or they have support services to help them.

Our boxes are on a nice level drive-up with a paved surface and designated handicapped parking spots in front of them.

If a person is too old or infirm to go out and get their own mail, then shame on all of us for not helping them out.

Also, the mail is safer in a locked box.

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

Tue Jun 18 11:25:39 2013

There is something wrong about the figures that the USPS releases to the Public and the losses that are claimed, but no one seems to be asking the right questions. The USPS has downsized their employee base by close to 168,000 jobs. In the meantime, the USPS has doubled and tripled the cost of postage of shipping packages and have raised the cost of stamps, as well. Yet, the USPS continues to post record losses that have increased, not decreased. My questions would be; (1)Why did the 168,000 reduction in employees not make even a 2 cents difference in the losses claimed by the USPS? (2)Why is there a separation of First Class mail revenues from package revenues and a full count of all revenues not given in the final figures? (3) If the losses are so catastrophic, why the rush by so many Congressmen to privatize the US mail system? (4) Where are the billions paid into the retirement system? (5)What is the interest revenue amount per year on the billions supposedly sitting in some bank account for future retirees for the next 75 years?  

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

Tue Jun 18 11:34:18 2013

The thinking behind this is flawed. It is a HUGE fallacy in light of the need for stronger NATIONAL SECURITY.
We MUST be able to verify, by way of Signature, who accepts the packages. Clustered mailboxes will allow for massive theft. Saturday delivery AND Sunday delivery MUST be. Remove Wednesday and Thursday delivery as they are low volume days.
Representative Darrell Issa IS A MORON.
I would Love to Lunch with him just to have to opportunity to tell him this to his face.
STUPID has no place in American Government. Yet, it seems to have permeated almost 100% of all levels.
Only a COMPLETE Unscheduled intervention will save our country.

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by: RCL This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jun 18 11:45:44 2013

I agree with Ming just FYI. Cluster boxes for what we pay for mail service? I want to see an environmental impact study, too.  

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by: miklang This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jun 18 11:46:48 2013

This has been the best news of the week. I can't believe mailers all over the world are not for this. Secure, lockbox type of delivery vs. goods left in a accessible by anyone receptacle by the door. Mailers should endorse this concept. It's brilliant! What took so long.

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This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Tue Jun 18 12:56:31 2013

There are many places in California (and I assume other states as well) that residents are required to have a post office box due to weather conditions or inaccessibility of homes. Maybe it would be a better solution to just give everyone a free post office box and then no employee would ever need to venture outside of the post office building.

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by: Bloggo This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jun 18 13:06:46 2013

Article I, Section 8, Clause 7 of the United States Constitution, known as the Postal Clause or the Postal Power, empowers Congress "To establish Post Offices and post Roads".
I'll take Ben Franklin over Darrell Issa.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Tula

Tue Jun 18 13:08:59 2013

The biggest problem for the USPS is the unions. They stand in the way of progress, since that inevitably leads to more efficiency and fewer required man-hours (and hence, fewer workers needed and fewer contributors to union dues slush funds). The pension issue is just absurd. What they need to do is freeze it and convert to a 401K like everyone else. There's no reason taxpayers should have to fund cushy retirements for government workers when they can barely fund their own.

I'm not bothered by the potential delivery changes, since I already get my mail curbside. That and clusterboxes are the norm out here in suburbia. When I lived in the city, though, we had actual mail carriers shoving mail through slots in the front door. I can see how that is much more costly, but curbside delivery is not usually an option in such areas because there's normally parking on both side of the street, so they couldn't just drive up and fill  the boxes there.

Privatizing might be a good thing. If they have to be concerned about making a profit, there will be less waste. As our government has proven time and again, if you don't have to care about the numbers being positive, there's no incentive to stop wasting money. I'd like to see more accountability and real solutions, not just unions blaming everything except their own bloated policies.

One other thing... I've heard something about a cheap/subsidized postal plan for China to ship stuff here to the US. That needs to go away. The Chinese already have the advantage of cheap labor costs for all the goods they dump here. We don't need to be making it easier and cheaper for them to compete at the expense of domestic businesses.

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by: PowerSeller2007 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jun 18 13:09:16 2013

Why is USPS delivering heavy foreign parcels with tracking for FREE?  

USPS is charging upstart of $6+ $8+ for 1 oz. to ALL US Sellers.

But the foreign sellers sell items from $0.99, $1.99, $2.99 etc.  and USPS ship their parcels to US addresses?  

How is selling fishing license compared to charging foreign parcels by oz?  Just think of those millions of foreign parcels USPS delivers like fishes?  

Unless they plan to increase fishing licenses to $5000 per year per person.  So only rich people could fish on our lakes?

Please keep your hands off our rivers and lakes.

So are these congressmen totally blind, illiterate, dumb or are  they getting paid by lobbyist to destroy USPS?  What is their ulterior motives?

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by: JohnGermaine This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jun 18 13:28:24 2013

I should have known before I began reading, Darrell Issa again. He must have some ''buddy'' who he hopes will get the contract to take over delivery if he can crash USPS. He has been working VERY hard at exactly that for quite a while. Can't we get him unelected??!!

Perminate Link for An End to Postal Deliveries at Your Customer's Front Door?   An End to Postal Deliveries at Your Customer's Front Door?

by: Jbyron This user has validated their user name.

Tue Jun 18 13:28:51 2013

Ming once again is right. Issa is a right wing nut job hell bent on making a name for himself at the expense of the country.  

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