Using Online Postage for Your Business
It seems that everything can be managed online today, and your business postage needs are no exception. In addition to ordering mailing supplies and looking up postage rates online, you can also use online tools to print postage and mailing labels right from your office.
There are five ways to print postage online. The first is to go through the U.S. Postal Service's own website. If your computer needs additional software, it can be downloaded for free through the Click-N-Ship portion of the website. You can print Priority or Express mail labels for shipping inside the United States. For International deliveries, you can print labels for International Priority Mail, International Express Mail and Global Express Guaranteed. There.s no membership fee required to print labels using Click-N-Ship and additional services, such as postal insurance and signature confirmation, are also available to purchase. Delivery confirmation is included automatically at no additional charge.
Your remaining choices are to use vendors licensed through the U.S. Postal Service. These include eBay, Stamps.com, Endicia and Pitney Bowes, Inc. These services vary in terms of pricing, materials and equipment offered. One benefit is that some of these services actually allow you mail letters and packages for less than you would if you went to the post office to mail the same package.
Ebay and PayPal work together for the benefit of the many people who use these popular sites for the sale and purchase of goods. To use this service, you don.t need to purchase or download any software, or deposit money into an account . you pay for postage as you go. You can print most of the same labels using the eBay postage function as you can with Click-N-Ship, with the addition of parcel post and medial mail. You can also choose to purchase postage insurance as well, with a limit of $500. Many people who sell on eBay find this an especially convenient service, as they can automatically print a label with the correct postage and address once the buyer makes their payment through PayPal.
Stamps.com works a little differently. For this service, you pay a monthly fee, but again, you use your own printer to print out the postage. Stamps.com also has the advantage of allowing you to print personalized postage stamps. The service usually offers a free trial that includes supplies, a scale and sometimes free postage. For this reason, Stamps.com is perhaps the best known of the USPS authorized vendors. You can save up to 80% using their service over a traditional postage meter and they boast over 400,000 happy customers who have printed more than $1 billion in postage using their service.
Endicia is another service that allows you to print labels for international and domestic mailings. While you don.t have to purchase or lease any hardware to use their service, they do offer a stand-alone label printer, as well as a scale that can interface with your computer. Pitney Bowes operates on a similar model . you rent a postage machine and scale unit through their service and use it to print off postage from your office.