The number of parcels shipped globally grew 17% in 2017 to 74.4 billion parcels, and China was the main growth driver: its parcel volume increased 28% year-over-year. China’s parcel volume of 40.1 billion packages is more than 3X that of its nearest competitor, the U.S., which shipped 11.9 billion parcels.
Parcel shipping overall generated $279 billion in 2017, according to the Pitney Bowes Parcel Shipping Index, an 11% increase over 2016. The Index contains shipping-related insights across 13 countries representing 3.7 billion people: Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Norway, Sweden, the UK and the U.S.
• $8.95 in the U.S.;
• $2.64 in Japan; and
• $1.83 in China.
Other key trends highlighted in the report include:
• Same-Day Delivery: The popularity of same-day delivery services has created a battleground for carriers such as FedEx and DHL; major retailers including Target and Walmart; and startups like Uber and Shipt, all facing competitive pressures from Amazon Prime Now.
• New Delivery Technologies: Major international retailers including JD.com and Alibaba are making significant investments in drones and driverless vehicles for last-mile parcel deliveries.
• Market Shares Continuing To Shift: The U.S. Postal Service has proven the shipping industry is ripe for competition; it has gained 11 points of market share in the past five years, at the expense of FedEx and UPS.