Shipping - Anyone know how to get the best ground shipping rates for a startup?

Product is paper and cardboard and ships flat, but prices for shipping seem very high. Help!

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Good morning David,

Since your product ships flat it seems like priority (or first class) mail is your best option rather than ground through UPS or Fed-Ex.

Discounts through UPS and Fed-Ex are based upon volume. In order to get a discount you need only to speak with your local rep but you must qualify. Even if you have small volume now, you might just contact the UPS and Fed-Ex reps and ask for a discount. Worst thing that can happen is they say no!

The post office however does require serious outbound volume to even discuss discounts and their reps are few and far between. I did some consulting for a huge volume shipper in 2016 and it took months to get the postal reps to a meeting.

I hope this helps.

Warm regards,

John T Clark

We use PayPal to buy our labels..it gives you the volume discount on shipping and you can calculate which is the best way to go. There are other companies like Shippo who we used for a while that has great rates.

Wayne T

Smax Wax

Check out these guys. No volume needed. We do alot of volume and they could still beat our already 70% discount with Fedex. https://www.freightclub.com/

Tina Hofer

Modern Bean Bag Manufacturing Inc.

Thank you. I hope they are what the doctor ordered.

David Bezar


We've had a lot of luck in cutting our shipping costs down with ShipStation.
The nice part about it is that it integrates with our ecommerce platform and generates labels automatically.
Many times, we spent (wasted) alot of money using flat rate shipping from USPS.
Also remember, sometimes your shipping cost is not just weight dependent, but also volume dependent. That will impact pricing.
If you are looking into bulk shipping, use a shipping broker to help you find cost-effective freight carriers.

Also also, don't be afraid to pass the shipping cost on to your customers. It is just part of doing business. Shipping charges will kill your profitability pretty quickly if your don't account for it in your cost structure.

Good luck!

Eric Balough

Ricks Roasters

We just started using Sendle - they have excellent rates (similar to PirateShip) but I prefer Sendle because their dashboard interface is seamless and easy to follow. They also ship 100% carbon neutral which is a must for us! www.sendle.com

Britt Sanders

Spruce + Bee

We use Ordoro (linked to our Shopify store) and we get 67% off USPS rates and very easy to use cloud based software. You can also connect your UPS/FedEx accounts (I would suggest signing up with each of them and then giving them a call to see what type of discounts you can get). Also, we use Unishippers for even deeper UPS discount.

Kasia Rothe

Rustic MAKA Natural Deodorants + Body Care

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