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Choosing the Best Method to Send Your Next Mailing

mailblog

PUT A STAMP ON IT!

Postal regulations have a habit of changing ALL the time! Because of this, several factors need to be considered when determining which method will work best for you. Let AlphaGraphics Kansas City help you understand how to choose a mailing method.

FIRST CLASS MAIL

Basically every piece of mail you put a stamp on!  First Class mail is processed by the USPS on a priority basis. This means that it goes to the front of the processing line. It can be more expensive, but there are times when First Class Mail is worth the extra cost. The speedy delivery times and included extras make it a smart choice for business communications and important documents.

  • Size – Standard sized envelopes weighing less than 13 oz. qualify for the basic stamp rate.  Increased size or weight will require additional postage.
  • Delivery Time – Locally delivered in 1-2 days, nationally within 4-5 days.

Special Considerations:

  • Mail will be forwarded at no charge for a period of 1 year.
  • Undeliverable mail will be returned to you at no charge with the reason for non-delivery.

FIRST CLASS PRESORT

Receive the same First Class priority processing but with a deep discount of up to 20% off traditional First Class Mail. However, you must ship a minimum of 500 pieces and do some preparation to qualify for the discount.

  • Size – Same as First Class Mail. Standard sized envelopes weighing less than 13 oz.  Increased weight or size increases postage rate.
  • Delivery Time – Locally delivered in 1-2 days, nationally within 4-5 days.

Special Considerations:

  • All of the same extras included in First Class Mail.
  • Addresses must be NCOA address updated and CASS certified.
  • Mail is delivered to the USPS in presort order.
  • Can use an indicia or 1st Class Presort Stamps are available.

STANDARD MAIL

Standard Mail is the new term for “bulk mail”, and if you want to go way back, it used to be called 3rd class mail. At almost half the price of first class, this is one of the least expensive postage choices. It enables you to send more items for less money.  You must mail a minimum of 200 pieces.

  • Size – Ship anything under 3.3 ounces for the same rate or heavier for a little bit more money.
  • Handling – Standard Mail is processed by the USPS on a “time available” basis, meaning the post office gets to it when it can.
  • Delivery Time – There is NO guaranteed delivery time, only “typicals”.  Local mail is typically delivered in about 3-6 business days. National mail can take anywhere from 1-4 weeks… sometimes it’s faster… but sometimes its even slower.

Special Considerations:

  • Mail is processed on a “time available” basis, so not a good option for time sensitive mailings. Don’t use Standard Mail if you have a deadline or expiration date associated with your mailing.
  • Forwarding and return service are not available for this option.  DELIVERY IS NOT GUARANTEED!
  • Mail is not always processed at the post-office it is delivered to.  It may be transferred to another processing center that has less work.

NON-PROFIT RATE

The non-profit rate is a discounted rate of Standard Mail that is only offered to non-profit organizations. Non-profits receive an even deeper discount than traditional Standard Mail, sometimes up to 70% less than the cost of first class.  Be warned, Non-Profit does not have a first class rate so this mail is SLOW!

  • Size – The same as Standard Mail. Ship anything under 3.3 ounces for the same rate or heavier for a little bit more money.
  • Delivery Time – It’s processed exactly the same, so the “typical” delivery times of 3-6 business days locally and 1-4 weeks nationally still apply.

Special Considerations:

  • While tempting, nonprofit rates shouldn’t be used for time sensitive materials like event invitations or campaigns with expiration dates.
  • To receive this discounted price, non-profit organizations need to complete application form 3624. More information on form 3624 can be found here.
  • Forwarding and return service is not available for this option.  DELIVERY IS NOT GUARANTEED!

Deciding which service best suits your needs can be confusing and difficult. Let AlphaGraphics Kansas City use our knowledge and experience to help you choose the best option for your project. We consider all the elements of your mailing to get the most cost effective rate that fits your needs and meets your deadline!

 

AlphaGraphics Downtown Kansas City

Posted by AlphaGraphics Downtown Kansas City