I mentioned in an earlier post about FedEx’s 2017 changes to dimensional weight that UPS would likely follow and make the same change, and that time has come. Surprisingly, however, UPS will not exactly match the dimensional weight changes for UPS, and will keep 2016 Dim Weight calculations the same for packages that are less than 1,728 cubic inches.
What are the 2017 Dimensional Weight changes for UPS and FedEx?
As explained in the earlier 2017 dimensional weight change post, dimensional weight is applied to every package sent through UPS and FedEx which assigns a dimensional “weight” to an order based on its measurements and not on its actual weight. Whichever is heavier, the actual weight or the dimensional weight, is the official “weight” of your shipment and will have rates apply to the cost at that weight.
For 2017, FedEx is decreasing the divisor in the formula for calculating dimensional weight, so smaller packages have a higher chance of having a heavier dimensional weight applied to them. UPS held back on making the change, but recently announced on their 2017 rate change page they will be following FedEx’s lead and changing the formula as well.
One key difference, however, is UPS will be keeping the old formula for any shipment that is 1,728 cubic inches or smaller. In practice, this won’t actually affect many packages, but anything to prevent rates from going up even more is always welcome.
What dimensional weight changes mean for eCommerce sellers
UPS and FedEx like to mimic one another on their rate changes and surcharges, mostly because they have a strong hold on the parcel market and can get away with it. If USPS keeps making strong gains within the shipping industry, it’s possible we can see FedEx and UPS compete on their various surcharges, but for the time being that doesn’t seem to be changing.