As shoppers are stuck at home and ordering more online, shipping carriers are busier than ever. United Parcel Service Inc. reported its average daily volume was up 8.5% for the first quarter ended March 30.
Also, its overall revenue increased 5.1% to $18.04 billion, compared with $17.16 in Q1 2019. Breaking out U.S. revenue, it grew 9.3% to $11.456 billion, compared with $10.480 billion in Q1 2019.
“The world is counting on UPS more than ever before as we support the people on the front lines of this crisis and our customers with speed, ingenuity and reliability,” said CEO David Abney in the company’s earnings report.
Revenue for UPS’s Next Day Air service average daily volume grew 20.5%, the fourth consecutive quarter of double-digit increases for the service. And as nonessential businesses close, UPS reported that commercial deliveries declined while residential deliveries rose, but it did not disclose specific numbers.
“The progression of stay-at-home restrictions instituted across the country as a result of coronavirus closed businesses and disrupted supply chains, resulting in an unprecedented shift in customer and product mix in the quarter,” UPS says in its earnings statement.
The shipping carrier also reported that its on-time performance across all service levels was near a record high. However, data from last-mile technology vendor Convey revealed that FedEx Inc., UPS and the United States Postal Service have all dipped in their percent of deliveries that are on-time since the start of March.
As of April 14, USPS delivered the most on-time orders at 89.3%, UPS was next at 86.0%, followed by FedEx at 81.7%. All three carriers were around 90% or higher for on-time delivery rate at the start of March, according to Convey. Shipping carriers have increasingly cited the coronavirus as the reason for the delay, according to Convey.
For the coming year, UPS says it is unable to predict the extent of the effect the coronavirus pandemic will have on its business or “reasonably estimate its operating performance in future quarters.” Therefore, it has withdrawn its 2020 revenue and growth guidance.
“We will continue to adapt through this challenging period and prioritize investments and operational decisions that put UPS in the best financial position,” said Brian Newman, UPS’s chief financial officer, on a statement on its site.
276 retailers in the 2020 Digital Commerce 360 Top 1000 use UPS as their shipping carrier. 207 retailers use FedEx, and 211 use USPS.