Online sales fuel growth in U.S. Postal Service

Online sales fuel growth in U.S. Postal Service

The Internet and email may have driven the U.S. Postal Service to a crisis point but the Internet may well be responsible for the organizations re-birth.

Fueled by online sales shipping the U.S. Postal Service is projecting a double digit percentage increase in package volume for this holiday season over last.

“With the rise of online purchasing and on-line shopping it has really been a boom for the postal service,” says Bob Sheehan, Customer Relations Coordinator for the Madison Post Office.

Reports place cyber Monday sales in 2015 near $3 billion. The delivery of those items is driving record setting numbers for the post office. Last Wednesday the Madison processing facility saw the number of parcels handled more than double.

“Normally we process about 28,000 a day. We processed 62,000 a day which is an all-time high for us,” Sheehan said.

The growth is in contrast to the impact the internet and e-mail had on postal service handling of letters.

“Now all of a sudden the internet shows up and takes away 30, 40, 50 percent of its business. That’s a huge, huge problem to have,” says Steve Noll, a business marketing instructor at Madison College.

Noll says the U.S. Postal Service deserves credit for responding to the changing business climate and altering their business model.

“If it wasn’t mandated by the government that we have to have a post office it really seems likely this would have been the end of that business, but the fact that these people didn’t just roll over and give up, that they kind of said, OK, the business has changed so how can we position our product to fulfill a need,” says Noll.

Prior to the growth of parcel service the U.S. Postal Service experience a reduction in jobs. The current success is reversing that.

“With the rise in parcel services we are increasing, we are hiring constantly. In fact this last year in Madison alone we hired a lot of carriers. We are also hiring on the clerk side,” Sheehan said.