Shipping is an integral part of our global economy, with millions of packages being shipped daily. In this blog post, we will explore shipping statistics that shed light on the trends, benefits, and market analysis of the shipping industry.

Key Shipping Statistics 2023 – MY Choice

  • Total number of Multicarrier Parcel Management Solutions Statistics: 27
  • Shipping expenses eligible for refund due to carriers’ failure to meet obligations: Up to 5%
  • Savings achievable: Up to 25%
  • Forecasted global parcel volume by 2026: Likely to more than double to 220,262 billion parcels shipped annually
  • Reduced overall parcel shipping costs by 14% by leveraging Enveyo Insights analytics & reporting solution: Achieved
  • Parcel delivery cost reduction by up to 8% using nShift Delivery Management: Possible
  • Percentage of retailers worldwide planning to offer same-day delivery by 2025: 99%
  • Retailers offering same-day delivery currently: 35%
  • Retailers planning to offer same-day delivery within two years: 65%
  • Consumer demand for staying informed throughout the delivery process: 93%
  • Percentage of customers who wouldn’t buy from the company again if delivery visibility is not provided: More than 40%
  • Importance of multi utilization due to announced carrier GRI averaging 4.9 percent: More important than ever for shippers
  • Predicted increase in retail sales during the holidays compared to 2017: Up to 4.8%
  • Global Parcel Spend increase over the last 3 years: 48%
  • Increase in average daily volume for UPS in the first quarter of this year: 12.8%
  • Surge in average daily volume for the business-to-consumer segment for UPS: 77.6%
  • Predicted rise in online sales this year for UPS: 12.7%
  • Expected arrival of growth milestone for e-commerce: 2023
  • Expected percentage of growth to come from e-commerce: 86%
  • Increase in the number of unique digital shoppers according to a Global Shopping Index report published by Salesforce: 40% year over year
  • Percentage of shoppers buying from more online retailers today than they did a year ago: 70%
  • Revenue growth for OnTrac, a Western regional parcel carrier, last year: 34.6%
  • Percentage of OnTrac’s deliveries to residential addresses: 86%
  • Projected annual online growth for OnTrac: 15% to 16%

Shipping Statistics

Table 1: Shipping Benefits Statistics

Percent of people who noted time-saving and home delivery as a key factor in making online purchasesOver 60%
Percent of people who reported shopping online more in 2020 compared to previous years73%
Percent of people who expect to continue shopping online at a higher rate88%
Percent of postal service volume accounted for by parcel delivery before 20205%
Percent of survey respondents who purchased clothing online67%
Percent of survey respondents who purchased household items online60%
Percent of survey respondents who purchased groceries online56%
Percent of survey respondents who purchased cleaning supplies online51%
Percent of survey respondents who purchased electronics online49%
Expected ecommerce share of the market by 202421.8%
Percent of consumers desiring same-day shippingOver 75%

Table 2: Shipping Software Statistics

Consumers’ preferred notification typesSplit between three key notification types

Table 3: Shipping Latest Statistics

Percent of goods transported by shipsAround 80%
Volume of goods carried by ships from 2012 to 2018Increased by almost 35%
Combined capacity of merchant ships from 2012 to 2018Grew by around 17%
Volume of maritime trade growth from 2018 to 2019Reached just 0.5%
Volume of maritime trade growth in 2018 compared to the previous yearAround 2.7%
Volume of maritime trade expected to shrink in 2020 compared to 2019Around 4%
Percent increase in blank sailings from January 2020 to February 2020200%
Large ships totally lost in 2019 and 202048 and 49, respectively
Global sea trade volume decrease due to COVID-19 in 2020Only 3.6%
Region ranking second for shipping losses in 2020East Mediterranean and Black Sea region
Percent of world port container traffic handled by ports in developing economies of Asia and Oceania in 202062%
Percent of world port container traffic handled by developing America and developing Africa in 20207% and 4%, respectively
Percent of world port container traffic handled by developed economies in 202026%

Table 4: Other Shipping Statistics

North American Transborder Freight increase in February 202317.3%
LSCI.c Change compared to the value in the previous yearLess than 5%
Median wage50th percentile wage estimate
Total gross weight of goods transported as part of EU short sea shipping in 2020Almost 1.7 billion tonnes
EU country with the highest share of total EU short sea shipping tonnage in 2020Italy with over 14%
Percent decrease of EU short sea shipping in 2020 compared to 20196.6%
EU countries that accounted for almost 40% of EU short sea shipping in 2020Italy, the Netherlands, and Spain
Top 20 EU ports’ share of EU short sea shipping in 202038%
  • According to the International Chamber of Shipping, over 90% of the world’s trade is carried by ships.
  • The global shipping industry is worth $14 trillion.
  • In 2020, the global container shipping market was valued at $12.08 billion.
  • In the United States, maritime shipping accounts for 99% of the country’s overseas trade.
  • The top three ports in the world by cargo volume are Shanghai, Singapore, and Shenzhen.

Shipping Facts

  • The first recorded shipment was in 3000 BC, when the Egyptians transported cedarwood for shipbuilding from Lebanon.
  • The world’s largest container ship is the HMM Algeciras, which can carry up to 24,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs).
  • The Panama Canal was opened in 1914 and has since facilitated the transportation of over one million vessels.
  • The world’s longest shipping route is from China to the United States, covering a distance of 12,200 miles.
  • The world’s largest shipping company is Maersk, which operates over 700 vessels.

Shipping Benefits

  • Shipping is the most cost-effective way of transporting goods over long distances.
  • The shipping industry plays a vital role in global economic growth.
  • Shipping is environmentally friendly compared to other modes of transportation, with lower carbon emissions per tonne-kilometer.
  • The shipping industry provides employment opportunities for millions of people worldwide.
  • Shipping enables countries to trade with each other, promoting cultural exchange and diplomatic relations.

Shipping Trends

  • Digitalization is transforming the shipping industry, with the use of blockchain, artificial intelligence, and the Internet of Things (IoT).
  • The demand for e-commerce has led to an increase in parcel shipping.
  • The use of autonomous ships is gaining momentum, with several companies investing in the technology.
  • Green shipping is becoming more popular, with the use of biofuels and other sustainable practices.
  • The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted global shipping, leading to delays and increased costs.

Shipping Adoption

  • The use of shipping containers revolutionized the shipping industry in the 1950s.
  • The adoption of technology has increased efficiency and reduced costs in the shipping industry.
  • The use of drones for parcel delivery is being tested by several companies, including Amazon and UPS.
  • Blockchain technology is being used to improve supply chain transparency and reduce fraud in the shipping industry.
  • The use of electronic bills of lading is becoming more common, reducing paperwork and increasing efficiency.

Shipping Market Analysis

  • The global container shipping market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 3.8% from 2021 to 2028.
  • The Asia-Pacific region dominates the container shipping market, accounting for over 60% of the market share.
  • The dry bulk shipping market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 4.65% from 2021 to 2028.
  • The tanker shipping market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 4.4% from 2021 to 2028.
  • The global shipping software market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 10.6% from 2021 to 2028.

Shipping Demographics

  • The average age of a seafarer is 35 years old.
  • Over 80% of seafarers come from developing countries, including the Philippines, Indonesia, and China.
  • The gender gap in the shipping industry is significant, with women accounting for only 2% of the workforce.
  • The maritime industry is one of the most diverse industries, with people from over 150 countries working in the sector.
  • The shipping industry is expected to face a shortage of skilled workers in the coming years.

Shipping Software

  • Shipping software can help manage inventory, track shipments, and optimize routes.
  • Transportation Management Systems (TMS) can help shippers reduce costs and increase efficiency.
  • Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) can help reduce paperwork and improve supply chain visibility.
  • Warehouse Management Systems (WMS) can help manage inventory and streamline operations.
  • Advanced Analytics software can provide insights into shipping data, enabling shippers to make data-driven decisions.

Shipping Opportunities

  • The growth of e-commerce and the increasing demand for parcel shipping provide opportunities for the shipping industry.
  • The adoption of green shipping practices can provide a competitive advantage for shipping companies.
  • The use of technology can help increase efficiency and reduce costs for shippers.
  • The expansion of the Panama Canal provides opportunities for increased trade between the Americas and Asia.
  • The growth of emerging markets provides opportunities for shipping companies to expand their operations.

Shipping Challenges

  • The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted global shipping, leading to delays and increased costs.
  • The shipping industry is highly regulated, with compliance requirements that can be challenging to navigate.
  • The environmental impact of shipping, including carbon emissions and oil spills, is a significant challenge for the industry.
  • The threat of piracy and cyber attacks is a concern for the shipping industry.
  • The shortage of skilled workers in the industry is a challenge that needs to be addressed.


Q: What is the difference between freight and shipping? A: Freight refers to the goods being transported, while shipping refers to the act of transporting those goods.

Q: How long does shipping take? A: Shipping times vary depending on the distance, mode of transportation, and other factors.

Q: What is the largest shipping company in the world? A: Maersk is the largest shipping company in the world.

Q: What is green shipping? A: Green shipping refers to practices that reduce the environmental impact of shipping, such as using biofuels and reducing carbon emissions.

Q: What is the Panama Canal? A: The Panama Canal is a waterway that connects the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, facilitating global trade.

In conclusion, the shipping industry plays a crucial role in our global economy, facilitating trade and promoting cultural exchange. By understanding the trends, benefits, and challenges of the industry, shippers can make informed decisions that will help them succeed in an ever-changing marketplace.

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