The UPS Store, Inc., the nation’s largest franchise system of retail shipping, print and business service centers, is now 5,000+ locations strong, the company announced today.
“The franchise now has a store within 10 miles of 84 percent of the U.S. population,” said Tim Davis, president of The UPS Store. “And with the benefit of a solid value proposition, continued innovation, committed franchisees and the backing of the UPS® brand, the prospect for growth in the years ahead is positive.”
The 5,000th store milestone arrives during a time when The UPS Store has experienced strong growth over the past several years. The network has continued to expand, recently adding more than 100 stores per year – this growth being a factor in the No. 4 overall ranking in Entrepreneur Magazine’s 2017 Franchise 500 list.
“The UPS Store® network is made up of dedicated individuals and families who are committed to serving small business owners, customers and their communities,” said Chris Adkins, vice president of franchise development for The UPS Store. “Each of our franchisees have played a critical role in our growth and the development of our products and services. We look forward to welcoming more franchisees into our network as we continue to challenge ourselves to find new ways we can bring convenience and value to our customers.”
One of the keys to the success for the brand has been an ongoing evolution to better meet the needs of small business owners. Over the years the retail concept has expanded to include a range of solutions for small business owners, making The UPS Store a one-stop shop for small-business support. Services offered typically include printing, notary services, shredding, mailbox and locker rental, and, in some cases, even inventory management solutions. This is in addition to the packing expertise and full range of UPS shipping services and delivery options available to meet the varying needs of customers.
Among the newest offerings is the Print on Demand service, which rolled out earlier this year in 19 markets across the country. This service enables customers – including business travelers as well as small businesses -- to enter a print job online, have it printed at a local store and delivered to them within the same day once the project is completed. 3D printing for prototypes or one-of-a-kind items is another example of how the company has innovated, becoming the first nationwide retailer to offer 3D printing at some franchised locations.
Besides an ever-expanding suite of services, The UPS Store is also constantly experimenting with ways to better serve customers by providing conveniently located services. In addition to traditional locations, The UPS Store has introduced alternate concepts including a store-in-store model, featuring small-footprint stores inside existing high-traffic retailers, such as pharmacies, hardware and grocery stores. The “Main Street Model” is another modernization, offering reduced franchise fees for people who want to start a franchise in a rural or underserved location.
Other non-traditional locations include university and hotel centers and allow franchisees to serve the surrounding community in addition to specific customers, such as students and hotel guests. At Belmont University in Nashville, Tenn., a new store opened this past April that will not only support retail customers, but will also serve as the central mail center for the university, handling all incoming mail and packages for approximately 8,800 students and employees.
As The UPS Store brand evolves, customers continue to benefit from the innovation of its parent company, UPS. UPS is dedicated to improving the consumer experience with innovations like UPS My Choice® and UPS Access Point™, services that provide customers control of how and when they receive their packages. Working together, The UPS Store is able to extend the reliability, flexibility and service that UPS is known for to each and every customer.