How 2020 Postage Rates Will Impact Online Sellers

The US Postal Service filed its request for 2020 postage rates on Wednesday (Oct. 9). We took a quick-and-dirty look published in Wednesday’s blog[1], which you can read here. If approved by the PRC, the rates would take effect on January 26, 2020.

We also asked a couple of postage providers to weigh in with their thoughts to get something into today’s issue. Despite the tight deadline, Stamps.com’s Eric Nash provided us with his preliminary thoughts.

Nash’s initial impression of the 2020 rate change is that overall, the rate increases are relatively modest for 1 and 2 lb. packages – typical sizes for ecommerce shipments. For packages that weigh 3 lb. and higher, he said the rates get a little more painful, specifically for Zone 8.

Important Note: the rate comparison analysis that follows covers Zones 1/2 through Zone 8 and DOES NOT include Zone 9, which is for U.S. territories. Commercial Base Pricing was used for all rates.

Priority Mail

In its press release, the Postal Service said Priority Mail Express would increase 3.5 percent and Priority Mail would increase 4.1 percent, on average. Here’s what Stamps’ Nash had to say:

Priority Mail (Regular)

  • Priority Mail (regular): The largest increases are in Zone 8, specifically for 4 lbs. and higher where the rates are increasing by at least $0.53 per package. (Priority Mail 4 lb. to Zone 8 increase to $18.14 from $17.61 in 2019.)
  • Priority Mail (regular) – for 1 and 2 lb. packages, the rate increases are fairly modest at a max of $0.17 for 1 lb. Zone 8 to $8.42 (increase of 2.0%) and an increase of $0.33 for 2 lb. Zone 8 to $11.19 (increase of 2.9%).

Priority Mail Regional Rates

  • Priority Mail Regional Rate Box A are no longer based on a 2 lb. Priority Mail rate. They have unique rates that are a little higher than 2 lb. Priority Mail rates.
  • Priority Mail Regional Rate Box A Zones 1 and 2 through Zone 5 have a max increase of 16 cents – which is pretty small overall (1.8% or lower). Farther shipping zones have a little more sting for Regional Rate Box A – Zone 6 is seeing a 42 cents increase (4.0% higher), Zone 7 is seeing a 58 cents increase (5.2% higher) and Zone 8 is seeing a 90 cents increase (7.4% higher). Since Regional Rate Box A is incredibly popular, that 90 cent increase for Zone 8 is tough.

Priority Mail Flat Rate

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