You’ve Got A 1-In-10 Chance Of Receiving A Mangled Package This Holiday Season

In the next few weeks, a lot of us will be ordering items online — whether for ourselves or for others — and having them shipped somewhere, hoping beyond hope that these parcels don’t get lost, stolen, drop-kicked, or run through a Blendtec just to see what happens. A recent study of packages received from e-commerce sites finds that you shouldn’t be terribly shocked if the box shows up looking worse for wear.

Between January and September of this year, the folks at StellaService ordered a total of 3,234 total packages from 121 different retailers. Nearly 10% (313) of those packages arrived with some sort of damage.

Which isn’t terribly surprising, given the insights of some of those who have worked in the shipping business at this time of year.

UPS had the highest rate of damaged packages at 11%, followed closely by the US Postal Service, with 10%. FedEx had the lowest rate (7%).

The not-as-bad news is that only 16 (5%) of the damaged packages contained products that were also damaged. So that’s about .5% of all the products ordered during those nine months. This is not to say that any damaged packages or products are acceptable — much like it’s not acceptable that .5% of Comcast’s customer service calls go badly — but it does mean that the sight of a beat-up box is not necessarily reason to assume your order is ruined too.

Also worth noting, there were 19 different sellers that didn’t have any damaged packages or products in the StellaService survey, among those were CB2.com,
Dell.com, Grainger.com, Rakuten.com, Shop.lululemon.com, Target.com, and Walmart.com.