Many shippers don’t realize that the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) is an extremely cost-effective and reliable carrier for international shipping. In fact, international shipping for USPS totaled approximately 60 million shipments and $3 billion in revenue in the fiscal year ending October 2013. 

“We had been one of the best kept secrets in the international shipping market, but have been able to change that as the result of cross-border e-commerce,” said Frank Cebello, Executive Director of Global Business Management for USPS. According to Cebello, USPS offers delivery services similar to those offered by small parcel carriers, often for a lower price depending on destination, package weight and other factors. USPS international shipping is also free of surcharges, which buyers and sellers should take into account when making a carrier selection. 

Add USPS Rates to Your Multi-Carrier System

One of the best ways shippers can offer their customers increased options and enhanced value propositions is by making sure that USPS rates and services are added to their multi-carrier shipping system, although small shippers who do not yet have a multi-carrier system can also take advantage of USPS online shipping tools. 

“We work with exporters of all sizes, from very small online retailers to very large global organizations. Our niche tends to be more focused on business-to-consumer (B-to-C) types of shipments primarily because our delivery network is made up of foreign postal partners who have a service mandate to deliver to residential customers. That said, however, we deliver large quantities of letters and packages in the international business-to-business realm as well.”

According to Cebello, USPS has paid close attention to the e-commerce boom and now offers several shipping services to accommodate online retailers’ shipping preferences. 

“USPS offers several global services that help businesses small and large balance speed and affordability,” said Cebello. “For example, our Global Express Guaranteed service is an alliance with FedEx which will get your package delivered overseas in one to three days. Our next-fastest service, and in my opinion, one of the best services we offer, is our Priority Mail Express International (PMEI) service. This is a fully-tracked service that goes through the postal channel, gets specialized handling by the receiving post at the other end, and is very much on par with what our competitors offer outside of their express services. Customers can also take advantage of our Priority Mail International (PMI) and First-Class Package International services – which also offer great service at a great price.”

Additional USPS Shipping Perks

In addition to attractive pricing and transit time options, shippers also gain numerous other perks, depending on the service, including:

• No hidden fees or surcharges
• Free Package Pickup at your door 
• Free shipping supplies
• USPS Tracking at no additional cost
• Shipping rates include up to $100 insurance on documents and $200 in insurance for merchandise 

Shippers can also earn discounted shipping rates if they meet certain shipping volume commitments through USPS. 

“International e-commerce is predicted to grow at a double-digit pace through the end of the decade,” noted Cebello, “Whether you are a small start-up business or a Fortune 500 company, the USPS is here to help you grow.”