What is the Cheapest FedEx Shipping Option?

Learn about the most affordable shipping options from FedEx, from FedEx Ground Economy service to FedEx One Rate
what is the cheapest FedEx shipping option?
Written on:

While most eCommerce businesses in the U.S. use USPS and UPS as their shipping carriers of choice, FedEx is becoming more popular. Typically known in the industry as the premier carrier for business deliveries, emergency delivery, and niche shipments, FedEx is making forays into the handheld eCommerce package market through endeavors like launching the proprietary eCommerce platform FDX. If you’re considering switching to shipping FedEx for your online business, here’s what you need to know about the cheapest shipping options FedEx offers.

Table of Contents

The Cheapest FedEx Shipping Option Depends on What You’re Shipping

There is no one-size-fits-all “cheapest option” for FedEx shipments. As is the case with other carriers, which service presents the most affordable rates depends on what you’re shipping, how much it weighs, how big the package is, and how far it needs to travel.

For Larger & Heavier Packages, FedEx Ground is the Cheapest Service

When shipping large boxes that weigh more than 50 pounds, look no further than FedEx Ground. FedEx Ground is FedEx’s slowest and most affordable delivery option. Delivery for FedEx Ground shipments takes between 1-5 business days to the 48 contiguous U.S. states. For shipments traveling to Alaska and Hawaii, delivery timeframes increase to 3-7 business days.

Pro Tip: FedEx offers a maximum weight threshold of 150 pounds per shipment. However, other carriers like UPS and USPS may offer better rates for your heavy shipment. Learn more about which carrier is best for shipping heavy items.

Access More Affordable Rates with FedEx Ground Economy

FedEx Ground Economy (formerly FedEx SmartPost) offers the same service as FedEx Ground, except at slightly more affordable rates. For this service, FedEx still transports packages through its ground transportation network. The only difference is that FedEx hands off a portion of the packages to the U.S. Postal Service, which then carries out the last-mile delivery to your recipient’s address.

Since it is slightly cheaper than FedEx Ground, Ground Economy packages are typically delivered one day later than Ground packages.

FedEx One Rate is a Flat-Rate Service that May Be the Cheapest Option

For some shipments that weigh less than 50 pounds, FedEx One Rate may be the cheapest shipping option available. “One Rate” is FedEx’s flat-rate shipping service that lets shippers send a variety of different packaging types anywhere in the U.S. for a fixed price. It doesn’t matter if you’re shipping to the next town over or across the country; the distance your package needs to travel won’t affect the cost to ship it. The only factors that affect how much FedEx One Rate costs are how quickly you want your shipment delivered and the type of packaging you choose.

The Different Packaging Types for FedEx One Rate

FedEx provides 12 different types of free packaging for this service, including the FedEx Envelope, FedEx Small Box, FedEx Medium Box, FedEx Large Box, and more. The bigger the packaging, the higher the cost of FedEx One Rate.

FedEx One Rate’s Different Delivery Timeframes

Unlike Priority Mail Flat Rate services from USPS, which all feature a delivery timeframe of 1-3 business days, shippers can choose from different delivery timeframes within FedEx One Rate. The quicker delivery you choose, the more expensive it will be to send your package. Conversely, the slower delivery you choose, the cheaper it will be to send it.

Pro Tip: FedEx One Rate isn’t available for shipments weighing over 50 pounds. If your package is 51 pounds or more (but less than 150 pounds), FedEx SmartPost or FedEx Ground will be the cheapest available services.

Not All Shipping Software Companies Offer Discounted FedEx Shipping Labels

Far and away, the best way to save money when shipping with FedEx is to buy labels through shipping software companies that offer discounted labels. If you go to your local FedEx Office, you’ll be paying Retail Rates (aka full price). With shipping software options that sell discounted FedEx labels, you can access the same services at a much lower cost.

While most shipping software companies sell discounted labels from USPS and UPS, not every option offers FedEx services. This is because only a select few have partnerships with FedEx to offer discounted labels. In our experience, only the shipping software companies with customizable APIs feature discounted FedEx labels, not the cloud-based platforms.

The most popular shipping software API that offers FedEx rates to eCommerce businesses is EasyPost.

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Reddit Share via Email

No Comments

Be the first to comment!

Post a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Related Shipping Guides