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Is it possible to get 2-3 day ground transits at affordable rates?

The Holy Grail of E-Commerce Shipping: 2-3 Day Ground, at affordable rates.


Ecommerce shoppers have become accustomed to free 2-Day shipping via our favorite gorilla, Amazon.

That has forced many online retailers, most of which are working hard to establish their brands to find a way to replicate Amazon service levels for their prospective clients. That should be easy, right? Just contract with FedEx, UPS or USPS for a 2 Day Service.

Not So Fast…

Those two-day air products are very expensive. A quick internet search will reveal that a 15oz shipment can cost $20 or more in shipping. Why is that a big deal?

If your product cost is $20-$30 and shipping is $20 or more, how many customers will pay that extra cost? How many retailers can eat that $20 shipping fee on an order that typically has a margin of say $10? As it turns out, almost none.

Now back to the challenge: How can we get 2 to 3 day ground shipping at affordable rates?

The answer comes via understanding the distribution of your customers. In other words, where do your clients live. In the U.S. most of our population is within a 50 mile radius of a major metro market. Los Angeles, New York, Dallas, Chicago, Atlanta and so on.

If you can hold inventory closer to your customers, then when you ship their orders, you will reduce the zone, reduce your costs and improve your speed of delivery. Win, win, win.

What does this look like for the average customer? Based on US Census data in the map below (

We can clearly see that there is heavy population density in a number of spots. The two largest are the Northeast and the West. We also see some red, in the previously mentioned major metro areas.

So what does that mean to you?

Having distribution that is east and west, minimally, will get you closer to your customers and allow you to reach more of your customers in 2-3 days using affordable ground services.

How can FirstMile help?

FirstMile is an e-commerce parcel carrier.

Our unique approach allows small, medium and even large ecommerce shippers to get the best combination of price and service across a wide network of United States Post Office workshare partners--including our own.

We do this all with one API connection, one pick up via our FirstMile owned and operated vehicles, and one invoice.

Our algorithm drives the right label to you for each and every package, every day, across multiple USPS workshare options; that include first class, priority mail, express, ground and hybrid options.

The FirstMile algorithm works by first shopping each package for price and service. It then returns the right label for each unique package, which assures the best combination of price and service for that package within the prescribed service limits you set. So if you are looking for the fastest transit and the lowest price, that is exactly what our system does.

If you are tired of the headaches from trying to navigate the ecommerce shipping labyrinth, let FirstMile help.

Oh, and our systems integrate seamlessly into common shipping platforms like ShipStation, ShipRush, Ship Hero, Order Cup and many more.