If you use a postage meter, you already enjoy the flexibility of having access to postage at any time of the day or night. So why switch to online postage? To give your business another level of convenience and to reduce costs. In addition to letting you purchase postage via the Web, online postage vendors supply complimentary software so that you can manage mailing lists and print your mailing labels right along with your shipping labels. You can also track and confirm your shipments, and send automatic e-mails to alert customers that their packages have shipped. More good news—signing up for online postage typically costs a good deal less than what you’d pay for a lease on a postage meter. And you won’t need to pay for those pricy software updates that postage meters require when postage rates change. Here’s how the online postage process works:
- Download software from your online postage vendor’s site.
- Weigh your envelope or package and determine your postage.
- Print your postage and mailing labels using your computer printer or a label printer. Your postage labels include a bar code that indicates the postage amount and the zip code of the address to which you’re mailing.
Pick an online postage vendorOrder online postage through the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) or one of its preferred vendors.
Print your labels fasterIf you’re printing hundreds of postage labels, you can save time by using a label printer that accommodates label rolls.
Turn postage stamps into marketing toolsSometimes a no-nonsense postage label just won’t do. Give your postage some marketing muscle with customized postage stamps that feature your logo or other images that promote your company.
Stock up on mailing suppliesYou can’t print your postage and send your packages if you don’t have labels, envelopes and other tools of the mailing trade.
USPS Rate Calculator.
- When deciding which online postage vendor to use, check the system requirements to make sure that the vendor’s software is compatible with your computer’s operating system (including your version of the operating system) and your printer.
- Most of the online postage vendors offer a free trial period. Take advantage of it to make to sure they deliver what they promise. If they don’t offer the trial period to you up front, ask about it.
- When designing customized postage stamps, avoid the temptation to include cute or controversial images unless they fit your company’s image.