A new free platform from UPS, My Choice for Business, is a small business dashboard where business owners can set up delivery alerts, track incoming and outgoing packages, and estimate delivery times within two-hour windows. This technology means e-commerce operations and small businesses will have advanced visibility into the shipping process, leading to better customer service, informed staffing and reduced on-hand inventory.
Small businesses "can now sign up for this free inbound and outbound visibility solution that allows them to track and manage their shipments, and provide their own clients with a better customer experience," said Kevin Warren, chief marketing officer at UPS.
By providing SMBs with visibility for both incoming and outgoing shipments, business owners can prioritize in-house operations and work directly with customers to ensure deliveries are received. In a competitive e-commerce landscape, the opportunity for improved customer service could be a differentiator for some small businesses.
The web-based dashboard is also mobile-friendly, and it includes day-before and day-of delivery notifications, depending on an individual business owner's preferences. Access to this platform can be shared among several members, making it an intuitive and versatile tool for small businesses.
UPS said features expected before the end of the year include delivery change options, new delivery alerts and ETAs accurate to within 1 hour and 15 minutes. For now, this service is for domestic shipping only, with plans to go international in 2020.
The My Choice for Business platform is an extension of the My Choice for Home platform, which the company developed in 2011 and now boasts 60 million members globally. These platforms – the SMB platform being the first of its kind – prioritize transparency in shipping and logistics.
"Small business owners can face many challenges related to growth," Warren said. "The UPS My Choice [is] … designed specifically to help SMB customers overcome those challenges by making inbound and outbound monitoring of shipments as simple as possible."
With the rise in e-commerce and the emergence of Amazon as an online retailing giant, small businesses need to be wary of choosing the right postage services now more than ever. While UPS's new dashboard is an ideal, free tool for small business, it's important to understand additional mailing resources and equipment to better your business.