Sources: USPS. UPS and FedEx, Annual Reports. Packages shipped by FedEx ground and FedEx express. UPS involves US domestic parcel operations. First-class mail is used for postcards, letters, large envelopes, and small packages weighting less than 13 ounces. Total mail volume includes standard mail (or bulk), which usually consists of flyers, circulars, advertising, newsletters, bulletins or catalogs.
Mail Carried by USPS and Parcels Carried by Major Carriers, United States, 2004-2016
Mail delivery in many economies such as the United States undertook a notable transition. In spite of economic and demographic growth, total mail volume declined by 27% between 2005 and 2016. This is in part attributable to a substitution to electronic forms of communication as well as decline in the use of mail for marketing purposes (e.g. adverts). The transition to electronic telecommunications has been so significant that what is often labeled as 'junk mail' (unsolicited advertisement) account for more than half of the USPS volume. Inversely, the emergence of e-commerce is associated with a strong growth of parcel deliveries, including USPS (United States Postal Services) that delivered more than 5.2 billion units in 2016, a growth of 68% from 2010. The parcel delivery segment has been the most significant growth sector for USPS, accounting for 25% of its revenue. This growth has been boosted in 2013 when an agreement between USPS and Amazon was signed, to allow Sunday deliveries of parcels; USPS accounts for 40% of Amazon's deliveries. The two other major parcel carriers, UPS and FedEx, experienced a respective growth of 22% and 67% during the same time frame. The growth of home deliveries has incited online retailers such as Amazon to enter the parcel delivery market since they are able to generate enough cargo to offer own account transport services.