UPS vs. USPS: What's The Best Ecommerce Shipping Carrier?


If you're an e-commerce business, then you know that shipping carriers are a big deal. The right carrier can make the difference between closing a sale and losing a customer. 

There are two major shipping companies or services that businesses use: USPS and UPS. But how do you know which is the best option for your business? Let’s take a deep dive into UPS vs USPS.

What Is UPS (United Parcel Service) Shipping?

UPS shipping is a service provided by the United Parcel Service (UPS) company. It offers customers a variety of shipping options, including overnight, two-day, and ground delivery. UPS also provides tracking for all shipments, so customers can always know where their package is.

What Is USPS (United States Postal Services) Shipping?

The United States Postal Service (USPS) offers a shipping service for customers to send and receive packages through the mail. This service is available for both individuals and businesses and includes features such as tracking, insurance, and delivery confirmation.

The Differences Between UPS and USPS

UPS vs. USPS: Speed Of Delivery

When it comes to UPS, delivery times are typically very fast. In fact, the company guarantees that most packages will be delivered within 3–5 business days. This makes UPS a great option for people who need their packages to arrive quickly.

On the other hand, USPS delivery times can vary depending on the service you choose. For example, First Class mail typically takes 3–5 business days to arrive, while Priority Mail Express is guaranteed to arrive in 1–2 business days. However, it should be noted that USPS delivery times are not always reliable. In some cases, packages can take longer than expected to arrive.

Overall, both UPS and USPS are great shipping options, but if you need your package to arrive quickly, UPS is the better choice.

UPS is significantly faster than USPS, with an average delivery time of just over two business days. USPS, on the other hand, takes an average of three days to deliver packages.

UPS vs. USPS: Prices

When it comes to shipping prices, UPS and USPS offer two very different options.

UPS offers a flat rate shipping option that starts at $9.45 for extra small packages under one pound. This price increases incrementally for every pound over one, with the maximum weight limit being 150 pounds.

In contrast, USPS offers a variable pricing structure that is based on the package's weight, size, and distance traveled. For example, a one-pound package traveling less than 500 miles would cost $5.15 to ship via USPS. However, if that same package were to travel more than 500 miles, the price would increase to $5.75.

As you can see, there is a big difference in pricing between these two shipping options. When it comes to deciding which one to use, it really depends on your specific needs.

If you are shipping heavy or larger packages, UPS is usually the better option. However, if you are shipping a small or light package, USPS is typically the cheaper option.

UPS vs. USPS: Ease of Use

One of the most important factors in choosing a shipping label is the ease of use. After all, you want to be able to get your packages shipped with as little hassle as possible. So, how do UPS and USPS stack up when it comes to ease of use?

UPS has a more user-friendly website. It's easy to find the information you need and track your packages. USPS, on the other hand, has a more complex website that can be difficult to navigate.

UPS vs. USPS: API Integration and Tracking

Both UPS and USPS offer tracking capabilities for their packages, but they differ in how this information is accessed. UPS provides tracking information through its own website and app, as well as through third-party apps that use its application programming interface (API).

The USPS also offers tracking information on its website and app but does not provide access to its API. This means that customers who want to track their USPS packages must do so through the official USPS channels.

While this may seem like a minor difference, it can have a major impact on the customer experience. Those who are accustomed to using third-party apps for package tracking may find it more difficult to track their USPS packages.

In addition, customers who use UPS's API to integrate tracking information into their own apps and websites will not be able to do so with USPS packages. As a result, UPS's tracking capabilities are more customer-friendly than those of the USPS.

UPS Services

UPS services are some of the most reliable in the world. They offer a variety of shipping and logistics solutions to businesses of all sizes, making it easy for companies to get their products and materials where they need to go. In addition, UPS offers comprehensive business solutions that can help companies save time and money.

UPS Domestic Shipping Service

The UPS Domestic Shipping Services provide a variety of shipping options for businesses and consumers. These include UPS Ground, UPS 2nd Day Air, and UPS Next Day Air.

UPS Supply Chain Solutions

The UPS Supply Chain Solutions offer a comprehensive set of supply chain management services that help businesses optimize their supply chains.

UPS Business Solutions

UPS Business Solutions provides a range of services to help businesses grow and manage their operations. These include shipping, printing, marketing, and financial services.

USPS Services

USPS is a government-owned corporation that provides postal service in the United States designed to help businesses and individuals send and receive mail quickly and efficiently.

Media Mail

Media Mail is a service that is used to send items, such as books, sound recordings, and recorded videos.

First Class Mail

First Class Mail is a service used to send letters, cards, small packets, and flats.

Priority Mail

Priority Mail is a service used to send parcels that weigh less than 70 pounds.

Retail Ground

Heavier packages or parcels that weigh more than 70 pounds will be sent through the Retail Ground Service.

Priority Mail Express

The Priority Mail Express service is used to send parcels that weigh less than 10 pounds and have a value of $100 or more.

Pros and Cons of UPS


  • UPS offers a variety of services that can meet the needs of businesses of all sizes.
  • UPS has a large network of warehouses and delivery drivers that can get packages to their destinations quickly.


  • UPS rates are often more expensive than other shipping options.
  • UPS does not offer refunds for undelivered packages.

Pros and Cons of USPS


  • USPS is a reliable, affordable shipping option.
  • USPS offers free tracking and delivery confirmation on all shipments.
  • USPS has a large delivery network that reaches virtually every corner of the United States.


  • USPS can be slow to deliver packages, especially during the holiday season.
  • USPS does not offer insurance on all shipments.

The Bottom line

So, what’s the verdict? UPS or USPS for e-commerce shipping? It ultimately depends on your own preference and needs. 

If you want a service with faster delivery times, then UPS is probably the better choice for you. However, if the price or shipping cost is your main consideration, USPS may be more affordable. Whichever shipping company you choose, make sure to do your research and compare rates so that you can get the best deal possible.

If you're looking for more shipping tips and tricks for your eCommerce business, check out our blogs. Click here!

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