Prices and Discounts
are determined by the type of mail you are
sending. Pricing is based on the mail piece size, shape, weight, content of the
piece, delivery service standard desired and any special services needed.
Postal pricing is
divided into two basic categories; retail and commercial. Retail pricing is
also referred to as "single-piece". Single-piece mail simply means
you pay the full postage price (putting a stamp on a letter is paying
single-piece postage). Many mailers pay single-piece postage even though they
are doing large mailings. Why? Because they don't want to do any extra
preparation work—they don't have the time, or it's just not cost effective for
Commercial pricing is
a cost-effective way to send merchandise, ads, flyers, bills, and other
messages. Commercial prices are lower for one reason: you do some of the work.
By properly sorting and transporting the mail, the USPS offers you a reduced
rate since you did some of the work for them. The downside to this approach is
that it can be a significant investment because it takes time to learn how to
prepare and sort the mail, apply and pay for required permits and fees, as well
as invest in proper equipment.
Commercial Prices = Postage Discounts
As previously mentioned, the Postal Service offers lower
prices for "bulk mail” because you do some of the work that otherwise would
have to be done by the USPS. This type of "worksharing” is actually a win-win
for both the mailer and the USPS; mailers make an investment in time and
technology, the Postal Service's costs are reduced and you pay less postage.
The term "Bulk
Mail" refers to quantities of mail prepared for mailing with reduced
postage and generally refers to commercial mail. In addition, "Bulk Mail” means
discounted First-Class Mail® and advertising mail (called Standard Mail® by the
Postal Service™). Discounts are available for other classes of mail, too, and
it's important to know The Postal Service uses the terms "bulk" and
"presorted" interchangeably. In order to receive many of the postage
discount commercial prices, you need
to mail in bulk, and perform some level of mail sortation.
Finally, to be
eligible for postage discounts, you must be able to do "bulk mailings.” To
qualify as bulk mail, your mailings must meet
specific minimum quantities that are prepared as
a specific class of mail at reduced postage. For instance, First-Class Mail
requires a minimum of 500 pieces for each mailing. Standard Mail requires 200
pieces or 50 pounds for each mailing.
If you need
assistance in deciding on an option, in-house vs out-source, might best suit your
needs please refer to the sub-menu items in our Mail Decison section. Whichever option you choose – the
NAPM is your choice for staying on top of your mailing and postage bottom line.
NAPM for Your Business
The NAPM is a nonprofit trade association of
firms concerned with postal workshare programs, especially discounts for
presorted automation mail. We offer our members a variety of services that
benefit their businesses which subsequently benefit yours. Our services
include: Advocacy, Industry Networking, Information and Education, and
Solutions & Support. Please take a look at our About Us section to see how
we can be one of the best mailing decisions you can make for your business.