Despite its nationwide spread and ubiquity with consumers, few mention the U.S. Postal Service when it comes to leading carrier services in retail. However, the USPS isn’t letting an old-fashioned reputation hold it back from new-age success.
The USPS announced Tuesday (Dec. 8) that the agency’s online site generated over $1 billion in sales during a period beginning in Oct. 2014 and ending Sept. 2015. That total accounts for more than the combined sales of all physical USPS post offices in New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia and Dallas. Jim Cochrane, acting chief marketing and sales officer at USPS, said that the sales numbers from the website show that his agency has been committed to transforming to serve a new generation of customers, despite the lack of flashy promotions or media coverage.
“We’re everywhere, so you can be anywhere,” Cochrane said in a statement. “With USPS.com, your post office is as close as your desktop or smartphone, so doing business with us is fast and convenient during this busy holiday season and all year long. Our dedicated employees are ready to serve customers with prompt service at nearly 32,000 post offices nationwide. We also provide convenient access at more than 70,000 grocery stores, drug stores, office supply stores, ATMs and other locations where customers can buy stamps and other postal products.”
While Cochrane didn’t outline how much of USPS.com’s sales numbers were due to holiday shopping activity in 2014, it’s clear that 2015 will drum up plenty of activity for the carrier. USPS predicts it will ship 15.5 billion cards, letters and other packages throughout the season, with 600 million deliveries made between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve alone.
However, $1 billion in sales still won’t be enough to let USPS make UPS or FedEx obsolete, but in the age of fragmented on-demand delivery services, customers are showing that they’re not afraid to give alternative carriers a chance if they can get their shipments where they need to be faster and cheaper.