Another holiday season, another massive surge in package volume. This year will be bigger than the last – which was a record-breaking year. It may be an understatement to say the dramatic growth in online shopping continues unabated.
Not surprising, then, that the U.S. Postal Service is projecting a double-digit increase in package volume this holiday season. UPS expects to deliver a record 700 million packages between Thanksgiving and December 31, an increase of more than 16 percent. FedEx is also projecting a record-breaking year, with volume about 10 percent higher than last year, totaling roughly 370 million packages.
Customer satisfaction has been a priority for carriers after problems handling the onslaught of packages the past few holiday seasons. To help ensure a smooth peak season, the major players are ramping up seasonal hiring. Amazon plans to bring on 120,000 seasonal workers, UPS about 95,000, FedEx 50,000, and the Postal Service 35,000.
The stakes are especially high this year as online holiday shopping is predicted to top $91 billion, up 11 percent over 2015, according to Adobe's 2016 Digital Insights Shopping Predictions. Cyber Monday (today!) is expected to bring in almost $3.4 billion, up nearly $30 million from 2015. About 40 percent of people in the United States are expected to shop online on Cyber Monday.
In addition to taking our poll (at right), please tell us: Were you among the 40 percent of Americans who shopped online on Cyber Monday? Will you order more or less online this year? Are you making changes to your buying habits to ensure your packages are delivered before Christmas? What else can be done to ensure a smooth holiday shipping season?