Effective January 25th, 2015, the USPS enforced a new IMpB requirement as a result of which Stamps.com customers need to make adjustments to the way they use NetStamps for their packages. All USPS packages must now carry an IMpB tracking label. Designed to function like stamps, NetStamps do not carry a barcode like shipping labels, which is why there are some limitations around their use going forward.
This change only impacts First Class, Priority Mail, Priority Mail Express and Parcel Select packages. First Class letter postage is not impacted, for which Stamps.com customers can continue to print NetStamps, envelopes and mailing labels at the discounted Commercial Base rates.
Using the Stamps.com software?
You can still print postage for First Class packages, as well as Priority Mail, Priority Mail Express and Parcel Select packages on NetStamps, but at retail rates only. Additionally, these packages must be accompanied by the Form 400 USPS Tracking Label, which can be ordered at the Stamps.com Store. To continue receiving the discounted Commercial Base rates, print shipping labels for these packages.
Using Stamps.com Online?
Stamps.com Online customers will no longer be able to print NetStamps postage for First Class packages, as well as for Priority Mail, Priority Mail Express and Parcel Select packages. Use shipping labels instead! All shipping labels generated by Stamps.com already contain the IMpB-compliant tracking barcode and our customers will continue to receive discounted rates.
If you are creating PhotoStamps to use on your Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelopes (1 oz.), you will continue to be charged $5.60 for postage, but the Form 400 USPS Tracking Label will need to be included for these mailings.
Effective Sunday, January 25th, 2015, the USPS requires that all First Class, Priority Mail, Priority Mail Express and Parcel Select packages be shipped with an Intelligent Mail Package Barcode (IMpB) tracking label. First Class letters, Large Envelopes and Postcards are not affected by this new USPS requirement.
Packages that do not include an IMpB may face delivery delays as well as increased postage charges. Moreover, if you print postage online with a service like Stamps.com, the IMpB is required in order to receive Commercial Base and Commercial Plus discounts.
Stamps.com shipping labels already include IMpB barcodes!
Stamps.com customers printing shipping labels need not worry. All shipping labels generated by Stamps.com already contain the IMpB-compliant tracking barcode and our customers will continue to receive discounted rates.
Printing NetStamps? Learn how this update impacts you.
Stamps.com customers printing NetStamps are impacted by this update. Since NetStamps are designed to function like regular stamps, they don’t carry a barcode like shipping labels. Within the Stamps.com software, customers can still print NetStamps postage for packages but at Retail Post Office Rates only. A Form 400 USPS Tracking Label must be included. If using NetStamps with First Class letters, Large Envelopes or Postcards, Stamps.com customers will still receive discounted rates and will not need to include the Form 400 USPS Tracking Label. The Form 400 USPS Tracking Label is available for order at the Stamps.com Store. Stamps.com Online customers will no longer be able to print NetStamps postage for First Class Packages, as well as for Priority Mail, Priority Mail Express and Parcel Select packages.
Pay Retail Post Office Rates with a Postage Meter
Businesses that print shipping labels on a postage meter are also impacted by this USPS update. Since postage for a package using a meter is typically printed on “meter tape”, there is not enough space to print a barcode. Therefore, as of January 25th, 2015, metered postage for packages is not eligible for discounted shipping rates. Commercial Base rates are only available to shippers who have the ability to print their own unique IMpB tracking label. All other shippers can continue to use their postage meters but will no longer receive the discounted rates. Since costs can add up quickly without the commercial base discounts, high volume shippers may want to consider alternative shipping solutions. Moreover, these shippers need to ensure that each mail piece includes a USPS Tracking label (Label 400) to comply with the new requirement.
The USPS postage rate increase goes into effect on January 27, 2013. Stamps.com is hosting a free webinar for small business owners and e-commerce sellers to discuss how the USPS postage rate increase will affect mailing and shipping costs in 2013.
What: Free webinar on 2013 USPS Postage Rate Increase
When: Monday, January 28 at 11:00 a.m. PT/2:00 p.m. ET
Where: Register for FREE at https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/568309578
- Information on all USPS mail class rate increases
- Compare the new USPS rates to private carrier increases
- Learn about the new USPS products for 2013 including Standard Post and First Class Package International Service
- Find out about international changes to USPS Flat Rate service
- Learn how you can lower costs using exclusive online postage discounts