ways to pay postage
The postal service offers three different ways to pay for commercial postage.
your submission permission
You need a postal mailing permit for commercial mailings, whether using pre-made stamps, postage evidencing indicia systems, or permit printing. Please note that there is a permit fee and an annual fee for this type of submission.
Reading: Usps direct mail specifications
With pre-made stamps, you get the personalized look of one-piece mailing without the price tag. Prepaid stamps are available for the following classes of mail: Presorted First Class Mail, Presorted First Class Mail Postcards, USPS Regular Marketing Mail Service, and USPS Nonprofit Marketing Mail Service.
Pre-stamps are recommended for relatively low-volume bulk mailings if you or someone in your company affixes a stamp to each mailing. you can also have a private mail service provider apply the stamps by machine.
You can buy postmarked stamps in bulk at the post office window where you have your postage permit. Postage with pre-stamps must be taken to the post office where you have your permit. they cannot be left in a collection box or given to a carrier.
postage evidence systems (postage meter or pc postage®)
postage evidence systems include postage meters and pc postage products. allow you to print postage marks directly on your mailings or on a tape measure or labels that you then apply to your mailings.
what is the difference between a postage meter and pc postage products? Postage meters are devices that can print one or more postage denominations on a mail or tape measure. you can rent them from designated manufacturers.
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pc postage is software from a usps-approved third-party vendor that shippers can use to pay and print their postage using a computer, printer, and internet connection. both are convenient ways to pay for postage and keep track of postage costs.
If you already have a postage meter or computer postage account, using it to send direct mail advertising might be a smart choice.
Although you can use the same postage meter for all your mail, you must request permission to use the meter for business mailing. additionally, special markings are required for commercial shipping that can be applied with your meter seal. that saves you an extra step.
Using a postage meter and computer postage, you pay for postage in advance and top up your account as your balance runs out.
Permit printing is the most popular and convenient way to pay for high-volume shipments. Instead of using pre-made stamps or a postage meter, print postage information in the top right corner of your mailpiece. this postage block is called “indices”.
you print the hints when you print the rest of your correspondence. if you already have a printed correspondence without the permission print, you can use a rubber stamp.
To use permit printing, you must set up a postal account (called an “advance deposit account”) at your local bmeu where you will deposit your mail. when you bring your shipment to bmeu, the total postage is deducted from your account. it’s like having a checking account at the post office™.
at the local business mail entry unit (bmeu) office
save money with automation pricing
You can receive even greater discounts if your business shipment qualifies for automation. To qualify, your mailings must be 100% barcoded using an Intelligent Mail® (iMB®) barcode encoded with the correct delivery point routing code and prepared for high-speed mail processing equipment. postal service speed.
A mail service provider or printer can help you prepare your mail to qualify for these special prices. contact your local bmeu to discuss if automation is right for your mail.
making your customers respond easily
If you want to encourage potential customers to respond to your direct mail, Business Response Mail® (brm) or Courtesy Response Mail™ (crm) services may be good options.
With brm, you give customers a way to reply to you without shipping costs. It’s a bit like sending them a self-addressed, stamped envelope, except you don’t pay postage unless they actually use it.
you will need to purchase an annual permit to use brm. You’ll pay postage on the mail your customers return, plus a piece charge for each brm piece returned to you.
When designing a brm mailing piece or label, you should check with your local post office and have your proofs approved by usps before printing, as the piece must conform to a specific format. You can find more information about the brmarrow_right_alt templates on the usps® postal explorer website.
crm is another way to make it easy for potential customers to respond to you, but in this case, you don’t pay the postage. crm consists of pre-addressed postcards or envelopes that are given to customers, who apply the postage themselves.
This helps facilitate faster response time and more accurate response delivery. crm templates are also available on the postal explorerarrow_right_alt website.