All Things Shipping
Dec 21, 2021

UPS® Ground Shipping For E-Commerce Businesses: What You Need To Know

If you’re in need of a reliable and cost-effective way to ship packages within the US and Puerto Rico, UPS® Ground shipping is a great option. UPS® Ground shipping comes with day-definite delivery, making it easy to predict when your packages will arrive.

What is UPS® Ground Shipping?

Ground shipping is one of UPS’ more cost-effective domestic shipping options, offering day-definite delivery between 1-5 days. As the name implies, packages are shipped on the ground, which means they’re transferred by truck rather than by airplane.

As a result, UPS® Ground shipping takes a bit longer than other options like UPS Next Day Air® Shipping or 2nd Day Air® shipping, but it still meets the needs of most e-commerce businesses. If you’re looking for affordable ground shipping and don’t need packages to urgently reach their destinations, it’s definitely a great option to consider.

How Big Can Packages Be?

The maximum weight for a UPS® Ground shipment is 150 pounds, while the maximum size is 165 inches combined length and girth. These limits are much higher than similar ground shipping options through USPS, with maximum weight limits of 70 pounds and combined length and girth maximums of 108 inches.

How Long Does UPS® Ground Shipping Take?

As with most shipping services, total shipping time depends on how far your package will travel. Take the following example from the UPS website:

In this case, shipping a package from the Northeast region to other nearby locations may take just one day. However, if the package must travel to the Southwest, Northwest or Southeast region, delivery is likely to take 3-5 days.

UPS® Ground shipping takes, on average, 1-5 days for packages to arrive.

How Much Does it Cost to Ship UPS® Ground?

As with shipping times, your UPS® Ground shipping cost will be determined by how far your package will travel, so there’s no hard and fast pricing set in stone.

You can, however, find convenient UPS® Ground estimate quotes through Shippo. There are two main ways to go about it. Either get UPS rate quotes through the Shippo API, which integrates directly with UPS, or find UPS rate quotes through Shippo Web Dashboard on a per-package-basis. 

Check out some examples below:

What’s the Difference Between UPS® Ground and UPS® Standard Shipping?

Though these two UPS® services are very similar, there’s one key difference. With UPS® Ground shipping, you can ship to all 50 US states and Puerto Rico. With UPS® Standard shipping, however, you can only ship to the 48 continental US states, along with Canada and Mexico.

In other words, you can’t ship to Alaska or Hawaii with UPS® Standard shipping. If you need to ship to either of these states, you’ll need to go with UPS® Ground.

Who is UPS® Ground Shipping Best For?

Generally speaking, this service is ideal for e-commerce business owners who want a reliable carrier that offers affordable, day-definite domestic deliveries in up to five days.

For urgent deliveries that need to arrive the next day, there are other UPS services but, it’s perfect for those that are less urgent. As long as it’s not an emergency, you can save a considerable amount of money with a UPS® Ground rate.

It’s also a good choice if you need to send larger packages, as UPS’ maximum sizes and weights exceed those offered through comparable USPS services. If you need a day-definite delivery option, UPS beats out USPS here as well.

What is the Most Cost-Effective Way to Ship Ground?

For deep discounts on ground shipping, use a multi-carrier shipping software like Shippo. Because we partner with more than 85 carriers across the globe, we’re able to offer customers huge savings of up to 77% off UPS® Ground shipments. Shippo also helps e-commerce owners find the best delivery options based on real-time rate comparisons between UPS and other leading carriers.

Not to mention, Shippo offers a ton of additional features, including:

Sign up for a free Shippo account to start getting the most out of your UPS® Ground shipping experience.

*Discounts off UPS daily rates. Rates are limited to shipping from the U.S. only. Rates and any applicable discounts are subject to change at any time without notice.

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Sarah Gage
is a Michigan-based freelance writer covering business, marketing, and technology topics. She is also the owner of Content Conquered, a B2B-focused content marketing consultancy.

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