By Kay Wilt
For the third time this year, the United States Postal Service (USPS) has asked the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) to approve increasing postage prices by as much as 2%, effective May 31, 2015. The standard 49 cent letter rate will remain the same, but most other classes of mail will increase.
Originally postage rates were to increase April 26, 2015, until the PRC rejected some of the rate increases twice. The PRC has already approved price increases for First Class letters, postcards and flats, as well as Special Services. The request just filed includes Standard Mail, Periodicals and Package Services.
If the PRC approves this proposal, all prices will increase May 31 including the First Class and Special Services pricing. Thankfully the USPS didn’t opt for increasing prices at two different times which would have caused a major headache for software companies, mail service providers and mailers!
A fact of life today for direct mailers is that postage keeps increasing. And postage continues to be a larger chunk of the direct mail budget. If direct mail is a key marketing channel for your company, it is critical that you know the basics on how mail is sorted and how it can be optimized to obtain the lowest delivery cost.
For most mailings, postage per piece can vary based on how the mail is sorted and optimized. It is important to determine the best strategy to get the mail in your audience’s hands in the time frame desired at the lowest possible cost. It is not an exact science to determine the best combination of postage rates, freight to ship mail to postal facilities and handling fees.
Ask your mail service provider what their strategy is when creating a mail plan for your programs. There are different postal options to deliver mail. Do they utilize a variety of options to deliver your mail, not whatever option best fits their equipment?
For an overview of postal optimization and the different methods that mailers can utilize to obtain the lowest overall delivery cost, download our Postal Optimization White Paper at http://www.j-quin.com/resources/postalwhitepaper.