Gone are the days of chain letters and mail that you actually want. Nowadays, courier volume is dominated by online shopping. Looking at referral traffic data from SimilarWeb from the top three most visited courier services, FedEx, UPS and the U.S. Postal Service, you can see why.
The majority of traffic to UPS, USPS, and FedEx comes from people visiting the website directly, but for all 3 sites, referral traffic represents a significant portion of their traffic. From January to March 2016, 17% of USPS’s Desktop traffic came via referrals with Paypal leading the way.
This jives with analysis from SimilarWeb that shows Groupon‘s app reaching its peak usage at 9am with 6.8% of users firing up deals on their phone. Furthermore, our recent study found that the most popular day for online shopping in both the US and UK was Sunday. Even so, data from a CareerBuilder survey showed that half of Americans use work-time to shop online. This trend was most prominent among those who work in sales, financial services and information technology roles.
Aside from websites, many Americans are now using mobile apps to track their packages. As of March 2016, the UPS Mobile App was installed on 0.84% of all US Android devices and is used for an average of 3 minutes per session. Actual usage of FedEx, UPS and USPS Android apps in the U.S. typically reach their peak by noon before dropping steadily after the end of the workday.
It’s also likely that people are checking in on those purchases using apps mainly during the week to check the status of packages that are set for delivery. Notably, FedEx usage doesn’t drop off on Saturdays, unlike UPS, even though the two both offer Saturday delivery.
The biggest of the top 10 sites for global web traffic is also FedEx. The express delivery and courier service gets a full quarter of pie, followed by UPS and the U.S. Postal Service. France’s national postal service La Poste comes in fourth, followed by the Russian Post. 17Track.net is a relative newcomer and boasts the ability to track packages from more than 170 postal carriers and couriers. The postal service company of the UK, the Royal Mail, comes ahead of Italy’s Poste Italiane and Ukrainian express courier Nova Poshta. Rounding out the top 10 is German courier and logistics company DHL’s dhl.de site.
Online shopping has changed FedEx’s business. Last year, it made two acquisitions in to boost its supply chain and ecommerce abilities.
“We’re expanding the number of locations where customers can have their packages held for pickup, which also cuts down on last-mile deliveries…” it said in FedEx’s 2015 Annual Report