From groceries to electronics, it seems like there’s no limit to what e-commerce retailers are selling online, and of course, all of these online purchases mean having to deal with shipping.
Finding a reliable, cost-effective shipping method can be a huge challenge for small and medium e-commerce businesses.
Luckily, services like FedEx SmartPost fit the bill. So whether you’re a retailer or a customer, check out our article to learn more!
What Is FedEx SmartPost From USPS In 2023?
FedEx Ground Economy (formerly known as FedEx SmartPost) is a hybrid shipping service, combining the speed of FedEx’s transportation network with the daily residential delivery service offered by USPS. This contractual, cost-effective shipping service is ideal for small and medium businesses shipping low-weight, low-value, and non-urgent items. Delivery times range from 2 to 7 business days in 2023.
To find out more about how SmartPost works, and whether it’s a good option for your business, read our guide for more facts!
What Is FedEx SmartPost?
FedEx SmartPost is a shipping option that combines FedEx’s ground shipping network with USPS’ extensive residential delivery service.
In this hybrid model, shippers give parcels to FedEx. FedEx then transports the shipment through its network of warehouses, fulfillment centers, and trucks.
When a shipment arrives at the last stop before delivery, FedEx hands it over to USPS rather than making the delivery.
USPS delivers the packages (usually the next day) as part of its normal delivery routes Monday through Saturday.
Is SmartPost FedEx or USPS?
For the uninitiated, SmartPost can be confusing. That’s because, unlike most shipping options, SmartPost is a hybrid offering that uses resources from both FedEx and USPS.
FedEx handles package pickup, tracking, and long-haul shipping, while USPS manages the final delivery to customers.
What’s the Point of FedEx SmartPost?
SmartPost was created because it’s beneficial to FedEx, USPS, and their customers.
By partnering with USPS, FedEx makes money from shipments, while still avoiding the costliest part of the shipping process (known as the “last mile”).
This arrangement benefits USPS, because the company receives a cut of FedEx’s shipping profits just for delivering to houses that are already part of its daily routes.
From the perspective of business owners, choosing SmartPost is a great way to cut down on shipping costs.
This allows e-commerce companies to offer customers inexpensive (or even free) shipping without having to absorb expensive shipping fees themselves.
What’s more, shippers may find that they have access to more addresses with SmartPost.
That’s because SmartPost includes all of the addresses served by USPS, some of which aren’t available with other FedEx services.
Is FedEx SmartPost Reliable?
It’s important to note that if you had poor experiences with SmartPost in the past, it may be worth giving the service another try.
After SmartPost was created in 2004, both FedEx and USPS struggled to get their two systems working in harmony.
This resulted in inaccurate tracking, slow delivery, and frustration for all involved.
Since then, things have improved significantly, and SmartPost is now a reliable and easy-to-use service.
How Much Does FedEx SmartPost Cost?
Here are some examples of what you can expect to pay when using FedEx SmartPost:
- For a 1-pound package, rates range from $9.36 in Zone 2* to $11.84 in Zone 8**
- For a 10-pound package, rates range from $16.75 in Zone 2 to $27.50 in Zone 8
- For a 30-pound package, rates range from $25.07 in Zone 2 to $64.96 in Zone 8
*Zone 2 covers packages traveling 0-150 miles
**Zone 8 covers packages traveling more than 1,801 miles
How Much Does FedEx SmartPost Save?
On average, FedEx SmartPost is 20% cheaper than standard FedEx Ground shipping.
While that may not seem like a ton on a single parcel, these savings can really add up when multiplied over hundreds of packages.
Is FedEx SmartPost Too Slow?
By now you know that SmartPost is reliable and cost-effective, but you might be worried about it being too slow. Let’s see if that’s true.
First and foremost, it’s important to recognize that slow is a relative term. What may be too slow for one business or customer could be acceptable to another.
In fact, customers are usually willing to wait longer for packages if they’re getting free or very inexpensive shipping- up to 7 days for free delivery!
What’s more, it’s important to compare SmartPost with other services to get an idea of its speed.
On average, SmartPost packages spend about 4 days in transit. That’s about 1.5 days longer than FedEx Ground and FedEx Home Delivery.
Now that you’ve got the facts, it’s up to you to decide whether SmartPost is right for your business.
Perhaps the best way to do this if you’re not sure is to give customers shipping options in addition to SmartPost, share the transit time and cost, then let customers choose what’s best for them.
Does FedEx SmartPost Have Tracking?
Like all of FedEx’s shipping options, SmartPost allows customers to track packages.
If you are looking to learn more, you can also read our posts on why is FedEx packages are transferred to USPS tracking, does USPS takes FedEx, and if FedEx takes USPS.
FedEx SmartPost is a great hybrid shipping option that plays on the strengths of both FedEx and USPS. Thanks to this collaboration, retailers can offer customers a fast, reliable service, while keeping their shipping costs down.