USPS, FedEx, UPS, DHL, & More

A Guide to UPS Shipping Services for E-Commerce Businesses

By: Alexandra Sheehan | February 4, 2020

As UPS continues to be a dominating force in e-commerce shipping and logistics, we thought it would be a good idea to provide a refresher on the UPS shipping services available to online businesses and growing merchants. Knowing which UPS service best suits your needs as you process orders will help make for smoother transactions and more efficient order fulfillment. 

UPS Ground Shipping

UPS Ground is one of the UPS shipping services that guarantees delivery anywhere between one and five days. It offers affordable rates and guaranteed delivery. As a more economical option, this service is better suited for shipments that aren’t urgent or pressing. 

UPS Standard Delivery

Another cost-effective option, UPS Standard Delivery guarantees ground delivery for shipments to and from the U.S., except for Alaska and Hawaii. UPS will provide door-to-door service and make up to three delivery attempts.

UPS 2nd Day Air

E-commerce businesses are continually challenged to offer shorter delivery times. In our survey, we found that 54 percent of consumers and half of businesses prefer a 2-3 day delivery window. For faster shipments, UPS 2nd Day Air offers guaranteed two-day delivery to the entire U.S., including Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico (for shipments that don’t require overnight service). It’s a cost-effective option for shorter delivery times, and UPS will throw in free packaging. 

UPS Next Day Air Shipping

UPS Next Day Air Shipping is for urgent packages that need to arrive the very next day. This will come in handy if you’ve made a mistake and need to get a product out quickly. With guaranteed next-day delivery, UPS will refund you for any packages that don’t arrive on time. This also includes free UPS packaging materials. 

UPS Next Day Air Shipping serves more zip codes and businesses between 10:30 a.m. and noon than FedEx Priority Overnight does. 

UPS Next Day Air Saver 

Like UPS Next Day Air Shipping, UPS Next Day Air Saver guarantees delivery by the next day. The difference here, however, is that Next Day Air Saver will deliver the package by 4:30 p.m. to most commercial destinations and end of day for residential locations, later than Next Day Air Shipping. Both options include a money-back guarantee and complimentary UPS packaging. 

UPS 3 Day Select

UPS 3 Day Select services the lower 48 states and guarantees delivery within three business days. UPS packaging is also included. 

UPS Next Day Air Early

For early morning delivery, check out UPS Next Day Air Early. Delivery is available as early as 8 a.m. to most major cities in the U.S. and by 9:30 a.m. in most other cities. This also comes with a money-back delivery guarantee and UPS packaging. UPS offers early morning delivery in more zip codes than any other carrier. 

UPS 2nd Day Air A.M.

A more cost-effective option for urgent shipments, UPS 2nd Day Air A.M. guarantees second day morning or noon delivery to most commercial destinations in the U.S. Like other UPS shipping options, free packaging materials are included. 

UPS SurePost 

UPS SurePost is a contract-only residential ground delivery service that often uses the USPS for final delivery. This option offers affordable shipping to the entire U.S., including Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico. There are four UPS SurePost services: 

  1. SurePost Less than 1 lb.: for packages weighing less than one pound
  2. SurePost 1 lb. or Greater: for packages weighing one pound or more
  3. SurePost Bound Printed Matter: books and other bound items made of sheets that are at least 90 percent imprinted
  4. SurePost Media: various media items, including binders, films, medical binders, etc.

UPS Worldwide Express

For international shipping, e-commerce businesses can check out UPS Worldwide Express. It offers quick shipping from the U.S. to 140 countries and territories across the globe. Delivery is guaranteed to be on time, or your money back. Other benefits include in-house customs clearance and up to three delivery attempts. 

UPS Worldwide Express Plus 

This is like UPS Worldwide Express except with the additions of door-to-door service and guaranteed morning delivery. You also get up to three delivery attempts and in-house customs clearance. Note: UPS Worldwide Express Plus is only available in about 55 countries and territories. 

Access Points Economy

Access Points Economy is a low-cost UPS shipping option for domestic shipments between locations in the UPS Access Point network. These locations are independently owned businesses that work with UPS to provide drop-off, fulfillment, delivery, and returns services. This offers less flexibility with shipment time and locations, but more flexibility in terms of cost.

UPS Mail Innovations

UPS Mail Innovations offers logistics services to facilitate end-to-end management. This service is geared for high-volume shipments and more complex mail needs. UPS has a network of processing centers that automate mail management, transporting packages efficiently and accurately. UPS Mail Innovations is for both domestic and international shipments and is meant to integrate with your existing shipping processes. 

E-Commerce Businesses Can Ship With Shippo and UPS

Shippo is tightly integrated within the UPS ecosystem and supports all of the above UPS shipping services and more. Merchants everywhere benefit from the discounted rates Shippo offers with UPS and several other carriers. Byrd Cookie Company, for example, ships with multiple carriers, including UPS, USPS, and FedEx. By using Shippo, they can print labels, manage tracking information, and update customers for all of their shipments from a single dashboard.

Move Forward With Your UPS Shipping Needs

With Shippo, you receive instant, pre-negotiated discounts of up to 62% off UPS 2nd Day Air® service and up to 48% off UPS® Ground shipments.*

Start shipping and saving today >

Alexandra Sheehan

Alex is a copywriter who works with B2B companies in the retail, e-commerce, and travel sectors to create strategies and expert longform, website, and blog content. Learn more at thealexsheehan.com.

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