If your business is selling t-shirts online, you will have to ship apparel to your customers, and you have probably been looking for the best way to do so. You want speedy and affordable service, and USPS offers that for packages in the continental US. So, how do you ship t-shirts with USPS in 2022?
To ship t-shirts with USPS in 2023, use their First-Class Package service retail rates for packages under 13 ounces, which will cost $3.37 to $6.28 depending on the zone. For parcels over this weight, we recommend using Priority Mail Flat Rate envelopes at the cost of $7.75 or boxes at $8.25.
With shipping times of two to three days for first-class mail and only two days for priority mail, USPS offers a speedy service. What’s more, it’s considerably cheaper than that offered by competitors such as UPS and FedEx due to how packaging is calculated. Let’s find out how to get the most out of their services.
Which Shipping Option To Choose To Ship T-Shirts With USPS
The USPS offers various shipping options, of which we shall consider the three most appropriate for shipping t-shirts.
These three shipping options are First Class Mail, Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelope, and Priority Mail Flat Rate Box. These stack up as follows:
|Shipping Option||Shipping Time||Packaging||Cost as of 2022|
|USPS First Class Package||Estimated delivery time 1 to 5 days (usually 2 to 3 days)||Large envelope weighing under 1 pound (up to 15.999 ounces)||$3.37 to $6.28 depending on the distance of destination (zone) and whether retail or commercial rates apply|
|USPS Priority Mail 2-Day Flat Rate Envelope||Two days||12 1/2 inch by 9 1/2 inch envelope||$7.75 retail rate|
|USPS Priority Mail 2-Day Small Flat Rate Box||Two days||8 1/2 inch by 5 1/2 inch by 1 1/2 inch box (approximate measurements)||$8.25 retail rate|
USPS First Class Package As A Means Of Shipping T-Shirts
The average t-shirt weighs between 3 ounces and 7 ounces, depending on the size of the t-shirt and the weight of the material. Even with packaging, many of the single-item t-shirt purchases you will be shipping will weigh less than a pound. Even a double order of t-shirts will be under this limit.
It can be easy to overpay for shipping, especially if you are worried about the need to have highly-expedited shipping. Customers purchasing clothing online generally understand if you are upfront about shipping time frames and return policies, allowing you to use a less expensive service.
USPS First-Class Package Service is the cheapest way to ship t-shirts under one pound. This service also provides tracking, allowing your customers to know where their packages are.
It is important to note that you can only ship packages up to 15.999 ounces with First-Class Package Service Commercial rates. If you wish to pay retail rates, you will only be able to ship packages up to 13 ounces with the service, which should be enough for two shirts and their packaging.
Invest in a basic electronic scale for weighing your packages before shipping them. Doing so can help you decide which option to use for shipping.
How To Ship Apparel Over One Pound With USPS
An order for multiple items to ship together is liable to cause the weight of your shipment to exceed the weight limits of USPS First-Class Package Service, whether you’re paying commercial rates or retail rates.
You will need to look at other options for packages over this weight limit, such as USPS Priority Mail Flat Rate, for either envelopes or boxes.
You can get free boxes from USPS that will fit your clothing items by ordering them offline. They will be delivered to your address.
The rates for a flat rate envelope are slightly less than for a flat rate box, making this the cheaper option if your apparel items will fit into it. Provided your package weighs less than 70 pounds, you can ship it with USPS Priority Mail Flat Rate service.
What is a flat rate? Typically, the more shipping zones your package crosses (the further it travels), the more it costs to send and costs only increase as the package gets heavier. Additionally, USPS charges dimensional weight for some packages.
Dimensional weight is based upon the volume of the package rather than its actual weight.
However, if you use the free boxes that USPS provides for shipping, you shouldn’t have any trouble with dimensional weight being a factor.
Flat rate shipping simplifies the cost of shipping. Note that we are not talking about charging your customers a fixed shipping rate, but rather about the USPS flat rate shipping.
Flat rate shipping means that the same charge is levied regardless of the distance traveled, or the weight provided it is under 70 pounds. You can send a lot of t-shirts a long way with this option, making it ideal for any bulk orders, and the flat rate means that it won’t break the bank.
How To Package T-Shirts To Ship With USPS
How you package your t-shirts is an essential part of shipping. Adding value to your package and personalizing it is a great way to make sure your business stands out. This is especially true if you aim at the millennial market, as millennials value such personal touches.
Add extras such as stickers related to your brand, a handwritten and scanned thank you note, a discount QR code, business cards, or washing instructions.
To pack your t-shirts, use colorful poly mailers to boost your brand image, and then tuck your bags inside the USPS envelopes or boxes. Fold the t-shirts carefully (try to have the design showing on top). It is worth looking up folding tutorials on YouTube to assist you. I found this video helpful.
Weigh as you go to stay underweight limits. Avoid extra cushioning, as it will add unnecessary weight. Email receipts to keep weight down. If you include additional items, personalized touches, as mentioned above, are more valuable.
If you fulfill orders online, you will have to ship shirts to your customers. If you require a speedy and cheap shipping service, the best option in the continental United States is USPS.
Choose their First-Class Package service retail rates for packages under 13 ounces, or choose a Priority Mail Flat Rate service for larger orders (under 70 pounds). Package your shirts to prevent them from getting damaged, and include personal touches to make your business stand out.
Bryan E. Robinson is the owner of TshirtGrowth. He has sold t-shirts since 2006 through dropshipping, screen printing, vinyl printing, DTG, Print on Demand, and more. Bryan has created his own t-shirt designs through Photoshop, Canva, and other platforms, as well as worked with freelancers to create many of his designs. Besides t-shirts, Bryan has 18 years of experience in online marketing with eCommerce, B2B SaaS, B2C products, and more.