Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Wed May 11 2022 13:46:24

Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July

By: Ina Steiner

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The USPS is making changes to shipping zones, which determines the rate shippers pay (for certain services, the farther packages travel, the higher the cost). With zone changes coming, sellers will see either higher or lower costs for some of their zone-based shipments.

As we reported last week, the Postal Service said it would update the way it calculates the distance between origin and destination ZIP Codes in determining zone assignment. "Rather than using the distance between origin and destination plant, the Postal Service will use the distance between 3-digit ZIP Codes to determine zone on July 10, 2022."

We followed up with the USPS to see if that would result in higher prices. USPS spokesperson David Coleman provided the following explanation:

"Postal Zones are defined in the Domestic Mail Manuel section 608.9. The Postal Service is removing the dependency on plant location from the zone calculation to provide more stable zone calculations for our customers. 

"In most instances, this will not make a difference in price because for most ZIP Code pairs the zone is not changing. For some 3-digit ZIP Code pairs, the zone will change, going either up or down. It depends on distance from the plant and the orientation between the plant and the ZIP Code. 

"For instance, if the origin ZIP Code was on the far Eastern side of the origin plant and the destination ZIP Code was on the far Western side of the destinating plant, then the price may go up one zone. But, if the origin ZIP was on the far Western side of the origin plant and the destination ZIP Code was on the far Eastern side of the destinating plant, then the price may go down a zone. 

"The DMM updated zone definition will provide more details and will be published in the Federal Register soon."

To see how USPS zones impact rates for some services, check out this 2019 EcommerceBytes article where Stamps.com's Eric Nash explained how new 2020 rates were set to impact shippers (for example, Priority Mail Regional Rate Box A increased up to 90 cents depending on the zone).

As we previously noted, the July 10th rate changes will have a big impact on Market Dominant services (and some ancillary services), while they'll have minimum impact on Competitive rates. The zone changes are a wildcard until sellers know specifics.

With lots of changes at the post office these days thanks to the USPS 10-year plan, it's one more uncertainty to deal with.



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Readers Comments

Perminate Link for Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July   Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July

by: GetAGrip This user has validated their user name.

Wed May 11 14:16:18 2022

Just another reason to not sell anything that doesn't fit into a first class envelope.   All 10235 of my items ship for 60 cents. Don't even need to use sleazy bay shipping as we buy all our postage stamps off of the internet for 65 percent of face.

Perminate Link for Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July   Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July

by: terry55 This user has validated their user name.

Wed May 11 16:24:21 2022

What hurts the most is there is NOTHING small sellers can do about it. The board that regulates the USPS only have "YES" stamp, I've written every politician I can and no one cares.
 

Perminate Link for Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July   Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July

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

Wed May 11 17:03:03 2022

Anytime you witness cold heartedness like this,
this is the Bohemian Grove "Cremation of Care".
It begins at the very top.
It's permeating everything.
It must be countered. and destroyed.

Perminate Link for Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July   Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July

This user has validated their user name. by: MainelyVintage

Wed May 11 17:21:10 2022

@getagrip according to AARP you are supporting counterfeiting by purchasing ''discounted'' postage stamps:

https://www.aarp.org/money/scams-fraud/info-2021/fake-p
ostage-stamp.html

This
seller says they got their shop was shut down for reporting it to eBay (last post):

https://community.ebay.com/t5/Buying/Bought-forever-stam
ps-off-ebay-Now-I-learn-that-quot-fake-stamps/td-p/31905222/page/3

Supposedly
can tell using black light, but really hard to tell the difference!

Perminate Link for Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July   Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July

by: ebayout This user has validated their user name.

Wed May 11 18:19:17 2022

The witless USPS...they have lost ALL the golf club/golf shaft business.
That's multi-MILLIONS going to UPS and Fedex.
If they were smart (chuckle), they would provide a 48x5x5 flat rate box for $12.
Signed...a former 24-year customer

Perminate Link for Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July   Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July

This user has validated their user name. by: COVID-19

Wed May 11 18:37:30 2022

"Manuel". Gotta love that! Who hired these people?

Perminate Link for Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July   Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July

This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Wed May 11 19:53:03 2022

"In most imstance this will not make a difference in price...."

Then why do it?  USPS is out of control with the frequency of their price rises.

Oh DeJoy.

Perminate Link for Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July   Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July

by: Alfacar This user has validated their user name.

Thu May 12 07:05:27 2022

I guess they will put small business out of business quick with all those hikes.  

Perminate Link for Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July   Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July

by: GetAGrip This user has validated their user name.

Fri May 13 07:36:25 2022

@mainelyvintage.    I'm sure the well known stamp dealer in New York would be rather upset with your comments. You have no knowledge what so ever about what the stamps I buy are real or not so until you can prove they are you would be wise to shut the hell up. AARP  HA HA HA HA HA

Perminate Link for Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July   Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July

This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Fri May 13 10:46:30 2022

"..., going either up or down."

Remind me again when the last time it was that postage rates went down.

Perminate Link for Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July   Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July

by: Snapped This user has validated their user name.

Fri May 13 11:44:25 2022

Rex:  

The last postage reduction was on 2016.  The link below provides an interesting graph.  It shows rates v inflation impacts since 1866.  

And considering inflation, cuz like, that’s a real thing in the equation, there was a significant ‘reduction’ in 1920, another in 1940 that lasted for 20 years as prices didn’t rise, and a smaller one in the early 80’s.  For the last 40 years it has been well below that, and steady within a 10% range depending on what year rates were ‘raised’ to catch up - but never above it’s ‘true’ cost of 30 years ago.  

Which might help explain it’s currently perceived operational ‘symptoms’.  Wear and tear and strained by order of magnitude volume increase, technology assimilation and increasing service expectations with minimal life support for over a generation now.  

Noteworthy, is that if the USPS never raises rates again, the ‘cost’ will definitely not diminish until at least inflation does.  And they will surely perish then.

https://www.johnstonsarchive.net/other/postage7.gif  

Perminate Link for Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July   Changes to USPS Zones to Impact Some Prices in July

by: Snapped This user has validated their user name.

Fri May 13 11:48:13 2022

Oops - sorry - re to Jack… 😮



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