Inside Logistics

Global parcel volumes up 17 percent

In 2018 there were 23 parcels shipped per person in the 13 major markets


October 11, 2019
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STAMFORD, Conn. – Global parcel volume reached 87 billion in 2018, up from 74bn parcels in 2017. Despite unprecedented global trade uncertainty, this figure is forecast to more than double within the next six years and reach 200 billion parcels by 2025 with a 13.7 percent CAGR for 2019-2023.

These findings are from the Pitney Bowes Parcel Shipping Index, which measures both volume and spend for business-to-business, business-to-consumer, consumer-to-business and consumer consigned shipments with weight up to 31.5 kg (70 lbs.) in 13 major markets, representing 3.7 billion people – U.S., Canada, Brazil, Germany, UK, France, Italy, Norway, Sweden, China, Japan, Australia and India. Based on proprietary and published data, the Index has been compiled annually since 2015.

The latest report reveals growth of 17 percent in 2018, in line with the 17 to 28 percent growth projection range given in previous Parcel Shipping Index reports. On average in 2018, there were 23 parcels shipped per person in the 13 major markets, and 2760 parcels shipped every second.

In Canada, parcel shipments reached 1.1bn, up three percent from the previous year.

Global shipping volume remains on track to surpass 100 billion parcels in 2020 in aggregate across the 13 countries reviewed. China remains the strongest influence on the market with 51 billion parcels shipped in 2018.

Excluding China, parcel volume increased by six percent, from 34 billion in 2017 to 36 billion in 2018. Global parcel revenue remains strong, reaching $317bn – up 13 percent since the previous year.

China’s parcel industry volumes achieved CAGR of 41 percent from 2013-2018. Volume grew 26 percent year-over-year although this growth has declined from the 48-61 percent growth seen from 2012-16

The United States ranks highest in the Index for parcel shipping revenue at $119bn.

“Global parcel revenues continue to benefit from the explosive impact of e-commerce, but it isn’t just online shoppers boosting the industry. We know from our clients’ own behaviors that office sending is increasing, particularly in industries such as IT, Healthcare and Manufacturing,” said Jason Dies, EVP and vice-president sending technology solutions at Pitney Bowes. Carriers are trialing new and exciting strategies to deliver the best customer experience, to keep costs down, boost productivity and generate profitability, such as forming partnerships, designing next-generation sending technologies and developing last mile innovation.”

Complementing the Shipping Index, Pitney Bowes carried out separate research on its clients’ sending patterns and behaviors to identify key trends across different industries.

The research found sustained growth in Enterprise sending, primarily office shipping, across several different industries. Shipping volume generated by the IT industry is forecast to grow at 7.5 percent CAGR to 2023, with Wholesale B2C rising at the same CAGR of 7.5 percent to 2023. Manufacturing shipping volume is expected to grow at 6.5 percent CAGR, and the Healthcare industry at 3.7 percent, also to 2023.