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Which Is Better For Your Business? The Difference Between Economy and Standard Ground Shipping

Diana Zheng
March 5, 2024

Shipping is vital in running a business, especially for developing eCommerce businesses. Bringing your products to the customers will be easy with a proper shipping process.

Customers don't only look at the actual products they receive. They also consider how fast they can receive their orders and the convenience of receiving them.

The question is, how do sellers improve their shipping process? Unfortunately, not all options will meet the goals. Thus, we will discuss the two most common seller options: economy and standard shipping.

Key Takeaways

  • Choosing the shipping method that fits your business's needs is essential, whether focusing on saving money, getting things there fast, or ensuring they arrive reliably.
  • Economy shipping costs less but takes longer to arrive, so it's good for things that aren't urgent. On the other hand, standard ground shipping balances price and speed, which suits those who want things to arrive quickly and safely.
  • Businesses need to think about their type of business, what customers expect, their budget, how much and how often they ship, where they're sending packages, and what benefits each shipping option offers before making a choice.

What is the difference between standard ground and economy shipping?

Many customers are still confused about how to differentiate these two services. So, it is up to the seller to let their customers understand how to set the two apart from each other. But what are their differences?

What is Economy Shipping?

a paper boat and coins next to a shipping box

Economy shipping is a way to send packages without spending too much money. It's like choosing the slow and steady option instead of rushing. Here are other information about economy shipping:

Key Features and Benefits

  • Cost-Effectiveness. It offers lower rates than expedited or express services. Thus, it is the most budget-friendly option for businesses and individuals.
  • Slower Delivery Times. It takes longer for packages to reach their destination. So, economy shipping is the best option for non-urgent shipments.
  • Consolidation. It often involves combining many packages into one shipment. This reduces overall transportation costs.
  • Accessibility. Most carriers offer this shipping service, providing accessibility to many customers.
  • Non-Urgent Shipping. It is ideal for items that are not time-sensitive. This allows senders to save money without sacrificing reliability.

Limitations and Drawbacks

Economy shipping has some downsides for both customers and businesses. Packages usually take longer to arrive, which might not work well for customers who need things right away. Also, package tracking is not always available. So, it is difficult for customers to track packages or know when they will come. This can make customers unhappy and unsure.

For businesses, it takes work to keep customers happy when they want things fast. They might even lose customers to companies that offer faster shipping. Plus, if packages get lost or delayed, it can lead to complaints and extra costs, hurting the business's reputation and money-making.

What is Standard Ground Shipping?

a white delivery van on a road

Standard ground is a way to send packages using regular delivery services. It's the default option for shipping things from one place to another. With standard ground, your package travels by land, like on trucks, instead of by air or other fast methods.

How do ground shipping services work?

  1. Pickup. The shipping company picks up the package from your chosen location, like your home or a business.
  2. Transportation. Then, they load the packages heading in the same direction onto the truck.
  3. Delivery Route. The truck follows a planned route, stopping at different locations to drop off and pick up packages.
  4. Drop-off. The truck delivers your package to its destination, whether it's another house, a store, or a distribution center.
  5. Tracking (Optional): Some services offer tracking so you can see where your package is during its journey.

Key Features and Benefits

Standard shipping has some important features and benefits. It's a dependable and affordable way to send packages from one place to another. With standard shipping, you can expect your package to arrive on time without costing too much money.

Plus, many standard shipping services let you track your package, so you know where it is along the way. It covers a lot of different places, too, so you can send your package almost anywhere. Standard shipping is a good choice if you want a reliable and reasonably priced way to get your stuff where it needs to go.

The standard ground is the shipment process in which a parcel is sent from the sender to the receiver through land transportation. On the other hand, the shipping economy is the cheapest yet the most extended method of transporting goods to customers.

What is the difference between standard ground and economy?

Now, we both know what these two services are. But the question still stands: what exactly sets them apart? Understanding the difference between these two shipping methods can help you choose the best option.

While both offer affordable shipping, some distinct features and benefits make each reliable ground shipping option quite unique. Let's delve into the details of standard ground and economy shipping to suggest which one might be the right choice for you.

Delivery Times

Standard ground offers faster delivery times compared to economy shipping. Standard ground shipping within the same country can take 2 to 7 business days.

Meanwhile, economy shipping is slower. It often takes longer, around 5 to 14 business days, to deliver packages. So, if you need your package to arrive faster, standard ground might be a better choice.

Shipping Rates

Standard ground costs more than economy shipping but is still affordable. The exact rates depend on factors like the size and weight of your package and where it's going.

With standard ground, you're paying for faster delivery service and optional features like package tracking. On the other hand, economy shipping is usually the cheapest option, perfect if you want to save money on shipping costs.

Reliability and Tracking Option

Standard ground is more reliable and offers better tracking options than economy shipping. With standard ground, customers can usually check where the packages are, giving them peace of mind.

On the contrary, tracking is not always available with economy shipping. For some carriers that offer this feature, it might have limited capabilities.

While economy shipping is cheaper, standard ground provides more reliability and better tracking features for those who value knowing where their package is at all times.

Coverage Area

Standard ground usually covers a broader area than economy shipping. It can deliver packages to more locations within a country, including rural areas and remote regions. Economy shipping can also ship packages to many places.

However, this service might have limitations on certain destinations or regions. If you need to send a package to a less-populated area or a location far from major cities, the standard ground might be the better choice to ensure your package reaches its destination.

Package Handling

Standard ground involves more careful package handling than economy shipping. Standard ground options handle packages with more excellent care and attention throughout the process. This leads to a reduced risk of damage or mishandling.

Meanwhile, economy shipping might involve less careful handling than priority mail due to its lower cost and slower delivery speed. Thus, if you're sending delicate or valuable items, ground shipping might be safer to ensure your package arrives intact.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Between Economy and Standard Ground

When it comes to sending packages, choosing between economy and standard ground can be a tricky decision. But don't worry; understanding a few key factors to choose ground shipping from can make this choice much easier. Let's explore these factors to help you make the right choice for your shipping needs.

Nature of the Business

It is important to consider the nature of the business when choosing a shipping option because each company has different needs.

For example, one online store selling food items will need faster shipping. Due to the nature of the industry, choosing slower shipping will only lead the food to spoilage.

Another example is sending high-volume shipments. A bulk retailer might focus on cost-effective shipping to keep prices low for customers.

Customer Expectations and Requirements

When choosing a shipping option, it is crucial to consider customer expectations and requirements. Why? Simple, because meeting these expectations leads to happy customers. Customers expect timely delivery and reliable service.

By selecting the correct shipping option that aligns with these expectations, businesses can ensure customer satisfaction and loyalty, ultimately driving repeat business and growth.


Considering the budget helps businesses manage costs effectively. Companies can avoid overspending on shipping expenses by selecting a more cost-effective delivery option that fits their budget. This ensures they remain financially sustainable while providing reliable shipping services to customers.

Volume and Frequency of Shipment

Considering the volume and frequency of shipping allows businesses to choose the most suitable shipping option. Companies shipping many shipments can take advantage of discounted shipping rates. As for frequent shippers, carriers also provide different discounted rates.

Understanding shipping frequency and transit times ensures efficient and cost-effective transportation, reducing expenses and enhancing overall logistics operations.

Destination and Distance

Considering distance and destination is crucial because it affects delivery time and cost. Longer distances may need faster shipping methods to ensure timely delivery. Some shipping services may also have restrictions or additional fees specific to destinations. So, choosing the right option ensures smooth and cost-effective delivery.

Options For Ground Services

Knowing about the different options helps you pick the right one for what you need. Look at standard ground options to determine which works best for you.

FedEx Ground

FedEx Ground is a cheap shipping service from FedEx in the United States and Canada. Here's a quick look:

  • Delivery times: 1-5 business days in the main part of the US, 3-7 days for Alaska and Hawaii, and similar times for Canada.
  • Delivery area: Everywhere in the US and Canada, to homes and businesses. Cost: Usually, it is relatively inexpensive compared to other FedEx choices.
  • Weight limit: Up to 150 pounds. Extra stuff: You get a money-back guarantee if your package is late, and you can track your package.

It's an excellent option for businesses and people who want to send stuff to North America without spending too much or needing it to get there fast.

USPS Retail Ground

USPS Retail Ground is the cheapest way to send packages within the US using the United States Postal Service. Here's a quick look:

  • Delivery times: It usually takes 2-9 business days, but sometimes it can take up to 14 days.
  • Delivery area: It covers all 50 US states and territories.
  • Cost: It starts at $8.95 for a 1-pound package, depending on how heavy and far it's going.
  • Weight limit: You can send packages up to 70 pounds. Extra stuff: Your package comes with tracking, and you can buy other services like signature confirmation if you want.

Key points:

  • Compared to other USPS choices, Retail Ground is the slowest.
  • It's great if you're not in a hurry and want to save money. Limited services: Some things like Saturday delivery aren't available with Retail Ground.

Overall, USPS Retail Ground is a good pick for people or businesses who want to send packages around the US without spending too much money and are reassured about how fast it gets there.

Ground Shipping UPS

UPS Ground is a good and cheap way to send packages to the US and Canada using UPS. Here's a quick look:

  • Delivery times: It usually takes 1-5 business days, and most packages get there in 3 days or less.
  • Delivery area: It covers all 50 US states and all Canadian provinces for homes and businesses.
  • Cost: It's usually cheaper than faster UPS choices like Next Day Air. You can get a price quote from UPS to see how much it'll cost for what you need.
  • Weight limit: You can send packages up to 150 pounds. Extra stuff: You can track your package 24/7.

In some places, they deliver on weekends for an extra fee, and you can buy other services like Signature Required if you want.

Choose Stallion

a Stallion crew member holding a box

If you're struggling to find the right shipping partner for your business, consider Stallion. It's the top Canadian shipping company, offering the cheapest and fastest shipping option. They can deliver your packages in just +1 day, helping you compete with US sellers. They go to the US border 6 times a week.

Stallion handles the shipping for you, making it convenient. This saves you time on processing requirements and customs clearance, so you can focus on marketing your products effectively. With low shipping rates, you can even offer free shipping and discounts to your customers, boosting sales.

Domestic Shipping Services

Stallion provides affordable shipping all over Canada. They promise to deliver your package quickly, usually within 2 to 8 business days, and their prices are low. They say you can save a lot of money compared to other choices. Plus, they offer full tracking, and you can choose to protect your shipment if you want.

US Shipping Services

While Stallion is a company based in Canada, it can also help you send packages to the US. They make it easier for businesses to compete with US sellers by giving discounts on USPS postage, which could save money on shipping. You can prepare and pay for your package, then drop it off. Stallion takes care of customs clearance before handing it to a US courier for delivery.

International Shipping Services

Stallion teams up with PostNL and APC Postal Logistics to do international shipping. They say it's a good choice for businesses that want to reach more customers worldwide without spending too much. You can ask for prices and handle shipments on their website, but remember that customs clearance might differ for each country you send to.

Final Thoughts

In summary, picking economy or standard ground shipping depends on your business needs. Economy shipping might be best if you're not rushing to ship things and want to save money. But standard ground shipping could be better if you need things to arrive quickly and reliably.

Consider what matters most to your business and carefully consider each option's good and bad parts before you decide.

So, what are you waiting for? Contact our customer service for additional information about the services we offer. You can also check our Facebook and LinkedIn account for updates.

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