Shipping items can be a real hassle for many people. You are usually faced with questions such as how big a box do I need? How much will it cost me? Who can I use to ship this? And the worst part is that all of your questions can’t be answered in one place. That is, until now. ShipHawk is a brand new web service that makes shipping a cinch.
I sat down with Jeremy Bodenhamer, co-founder and CEO of ShipHawk at TechCrunch Disrupt NY to learn more about the company he is building. In simple terms, “ShipHawk is to shipping what Kayak is to travel,” said Mr. Bodenhamer, who has an extensive background in the shipping industry. His last business was also in the shipping industry, he told me people would bring things in to ship and he would have no idea how to ship it. “My strategy,” he said, “was to just say yes.” And it worked, he grew the business by 400 percent and sold it, only then to start ShipHawk.
According to Mr. Bodenhamer, “Almost 65 million people in U.S. (100 million worldwide) are asking search engines packing and shipping questions — ShipHawk can answer them.” ShipHawk works well for retail customers and small businesses, simply go to the website, enter in what you want to ship and ShipHawk will give you the pricing breakdown for several different shipping companies, once you find the right shipper you can print a packing label, and then setup a time for your package to be picked up or ShipHawk will show you where you can drop it off.
With ShipHawk, there is no guess work on the shippers end. ShipHawk has a growing database of items so you don’t need to manually add anything. Plus if for some reason ShipHawk doesn’t have an item, you can add it.
While it’s obvious that ShipHawk is going to have a huge value proposition for eBay sellers, it will also benefit eBay buyers as well. The company plans to have an API that will integrate into eBay, letting buyers see the shipping price and even select other shipping options so they can get the item(s) they purchased on their terms and not have to be reliant on what shipping the seller has opted for.
While the shipping industry may not be the sexiest business, it is certainly an industry ripe for disruption. According to Mr. Bodenhamer, the estimated market size of the shipping industry is $200 billion, with $15 billion coming from the online market. Right now, ShipHawk is beta testing in Santa Barbara County, Orange County, and Los Angeles County and they expect to roll out nationwide by the end of the year.