USPS Announces Postage Rate Increase – Starts January 27, 2019

October 19th, 2018 Comments off

The USPS has proposed new postage rates to be implemented on Sunday, January 27, 2019, subject to approval by the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC). Listed below are the highlights of the proposed 2019 USPS rate increase for customers buying postage online:

 

First Class Mail Letters

  • The First Class Mail letter (1 oz.) rate for postage purchased at the Post Office is increasing by five cents to $0.55 from $0.50.
  • Each additional ounce for a First Class Mail letter will cost an extra $0.15 (a decrease from $0.21 in 2018).
  • First Class Mail Flats/Large Envelope rates are not increasing in 2019, remaining at $1.00 (1 oz.), with additional ounces costing $0.15.
  • Postcard rates are also not increasing in 2019, remaining at $0.35.
  • Customers who print postage online (via Stamps.com), the Metered Mail rate will now be a 5 cent discount compared to the Post Office price with rates increasing to $0.50 in 2019 from $0.47 currently.
  • Each additional ounce will cost an extra $0.15 in 2019, a decrease from $0.21 currently.
  • The five cent discount for online postage on a one-ounce First Class Mail letter represents a savings of 9% for consumers and small business owners.
First Class Mail – 2019 Rates
INCREASE PER LETTER – 2019 rates vs. 2018 rates
Mailpiece Weight 2019 2018 Increase
Letters – 1 oz. $0.55 $0.50 $0.05
Letters  – Additional Ounces $0.15 $0.21 ($0.06)
Metered Mail Letters (Stamps.com Rate) – 1 oz. $0.50 $0.47 $0.03
Metered Mail Letters (Stamps.com Rate)
Additional Ounces
$0.15 $0.21 ($0.06)
Flat/Large Envelope – 1 oz. $1.00 $1.00 $0.00
Flat/Large Envelope – Additional Ounces $0.15 $0.21 ($0.06)
Postcards $0.35 $0.35 $0.00
International Letters – 1 oz.
(Country Groups 1-9)
$1.15 $1.15 $0.00
International Postcard
(Country Groups 1-9)
$1.15 $1.15 $0.00

 

Priority Mail Express (Commercial Base Pricing)

  • Priority Mail Express will see an average increase of 3.9%.
  • A 1 lb. package going to Zone 8 using Priority Mail Express will cost $36.52 in 2019 compared to $35.04 currently.
  • The USPS is adjusting the DIM Divisor for Priority Mail Express packages over 1 cubic foot (1728 cubic inches) from 194 to 166.
  • Commercial Plus Pricing has been eliminated.
Priority Mail Express – 2019 Rates (Commercial Base Pricing)
INCREASE PER PACKAGE – 2019 rates vs. 2018 rates
Weight
(lbs.)
Zones
1 & 2
Zone
3
Zone
4
Zone
5
Zone
6
Zone
7
Zone
8
Zone
9
0.5 $0.70 $0.75 $0.80 $0.90 $0.99 $1.08 $1.21 $5.23
1 $0.76 $0.83 $1.03 $1.18 $1.26 $1.38 $1.48 $6.24
2 $0.80 $0.94 $1.18 $1.36 $1.45 $1.57 $1.71 $6.95
3 $0.85 $1.03 $1.40 $1.65 $1.76 $1.90 $2.05 $8.08
4 $0.89 $1.16 $1.57 $1.95 $2.07 $2.25 $2.41 $9.23
5 $0.93 $1.30 $1.67 $2.09 $2.33 $2.49 $2.67 $10.25

 

Priority Mail Express Flat Rate (Commercial Base Pricing)

  • Priority Mail Express Flat Rate Envelopes will also see a rate increase ranging from $0.70 to $0.72 depending on the envelope used.
Priority Mail Express Flat Rate – 2019 Rates
(Commercial Base Pricing)
INCREASE PER PACKAGE – 2019 rates vs. 2018 rates
Mailpiece 2019 2018 Increase
Flat Rate Envelope $22.68 $21.98 $0.70
Legal Flat Rate Envelope $22.80 $22.09 $0.71
Padded Flat Rate Envelope $23.18 $22.46 $0.72

 

Priority Mail (Commercial Base Pricing)

  • Priority Mail will see an average increase of 5.9%.
  • A 1 lb. package going to Zone 8 using Priority Mail will cost $8.25 in 2019 compared to $7.76 currently.
  • Heavier weights for Priority Mail are seeing a rate decrease.  For packages weighing between 11 lbs. and 70 lbs., all shipping zones are seeing lower rates compared to 2018.  Cost savings range from $0.11 (11 lbs. Zone 1/2 = $10.67) to $1.37 savings (70 lbs. Zone 8 = $184.51) compared to 2018.
  • Medium weight packages (4 lbs. to 10 lbs.), traveling to Zone 5 and higher are seeing a decrease in rates compared to 2018, with costs being reduced by $0.17 (7 lbs. Zone 5 = $15.43) to $0.63 (5 lbs. Zone 8 = $20.40)
  • The Dimensional Weight (DIM) divisor for Priority Mail packages over 1 cubic foot (1728 cubic inches) is being adjusted from 194 to 166.
  • Priority Mail parcels in all shipping zones will now receive DIM pricing for packages over 1 cubic foot.  Previously, only Priority Mail parcels being delivered to Zones 5-9 received DIM pricing.
  • Commercial Plus Pricing has been eliminated.
Priority Mail – 2019 Rates (Commercial Base Pricing)
INCREASE PER PACKAGE – 2019 rates vs. 2018 rates
Weight
(lbs.)
Zones
1 & 2
Zone
3
Zone
4
Zone
5
Zone
6
Zone
7
Zone
8
Zone
9
1 $0.40 $0.28 $0.39 $0.45 $0.47 $0.49 $0.49 ($0.11)
2 $0.32 $0.36 $0.48 $0.35 $0.23 ($0.06) $0.06 ($0.16)
3 $0.41 $0.31 ($0.13) $0.00 ($0.36) ($0.05) ($0.06) ($0.22)
4 $0.40 $0.15 $0.12 ($0.31) ($0.43) ($0.48) ($0.54) ($0.27)
5 $0.40 ($0.17) ($0.25) ($0.32) ($0.48) ($0.55) ($0.63) ($0.31)

 

Priority Mail Flat Rate Boxes & Envelopes (Commercial Base Pricing)

  • Priority Mail Medium Flat Rate Box is decreasing by five cents to $12.80 in 2019 from $12.85 currently.
  • Priority Mail Priority Mail Large Flat Rate Box is decreasing by five cents to $17.60 in 2019 from $17.65 currently.
  • Priority Mail Padded Flat Rate Envelope, a popular option for e-commerce sellers, is increasing by $0.45 to $7.55 in 2019 from $7.10 currently.
Priority Mail Flat Rate – 2019 Rates (Commercial Base Pricing)
INCREASE PER PACKAGE – 2019 rates vs. 2018 rates
Mailpiece 2019 2018 Increase
Flat Rate Envelope $6.95 $6.55 $0.40
Legal Flat Rate Envelope $7.25 $6.85 $0.40
Padded Flat Rate Envelope $7.55 $7.10 $0.45
Small Flat Rate Box $7.50 $7.05 $0.45
Medium Flat Rate Box $12.80 $12.85 ($0.05)
Large Flat Rate Box $17.60 $17.65 ($0.05)
APO/FPO Large Flat Rate Box $16.10 $16.15 ($0.05)

 

Priority Mail Regional Rate (Commercial Base Pricing)

Regional Rate Box A

  • Closer shipping zones (Zones 1/2 through Zone 5) are seeing bigger rate increases from $0.55 (Zone 1/2 = $7.65) to $0.61 (Zone 5 = $8.76).
  • Packages traveling to farther shipping zones are seeing a smaller rate increase – going up by $0.26 (Zone 7 = $10.55) and to $0.40 (Zone 8 = $11.20)

Regional Rate Box B

  • Other than Zone 1/2 where the rate increase is $0.64, the increase is relatively small at $0.08 (Zone 3 = $8.50), $0.03 (Zone 4 = $9.40) and no rate increase for farther Zones 5-8.
Priority Mail Regional Rate Boxes – 2019 Rates
(Commercial Base Pricing)
INCREASE PER PACKAGE – 2019 rates vs. 2018 rates
Box
Type
Zones
1 & 2
Zone
3
Zone
4
Zone
5
Zone
6
Zone
7
Zone
8
Zone
9
A $0.55 $0.60 $0.72 $0.61 $0.53 $0.26 $0.40 $0.31
B $0.64 $0.08 $0.03 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00 $0.00 $0.58

 

First Class Package Service (Commercial Base Pricing)

  • Overall rates for First Class Package Service will increase by 11.9%.
  • Zone-based pricing is being added to First Class Package Service in 2019.
  • Any package going across the country (Zone 8) is seeing a significant rate increase going up from $0.43 (Zone 8 – 1 ounce = $3.09) to $1.43 (Zone 8 – 13 ounces = $5.53)
  • 13 ounce packages in particular are rising across all zones, increasing $0.84 (Zone 1/2 = $4.94) to $1.43 (Zone 8 = $5.53)
  • Heavier items weighing 15 ounces to 15.999 ounces are seeing a smaller increase, going from no increase at all (Zone 1/2 = $4.94) to $0.59 (Zone 8 = $5.53)
First Class Package Service – 2019 Rates (Commercial Base Pricing)
INCREASE PER PACKAGE – 2019 rates vs. 2018 rates
Mailpiece Weight Zones
1 & 2
Zone
3
Zone
4
Zone
5
Zone
6
Zone
7
Zone
8
Zone
9
1 ounce $0.00 $0.02 $0.04 $0.10 $0.18 $0.30 $0.43 $0.43
2 ounces $0.00 $0.02 $0.04 $0.10 $0.18 $0.30 $0.43 $0.43
3 ounces $0.00 $0.02 $0.04 $0.10 $0.18 $0.30 $0.43 $0.43
4 ounces $0.00 $0.02 $0.04 $0.10 $0.18 $0.30 $0.43 $0.43
5 ounces $0.39 $0.41 $0.43 $0.49 $0.57 $0.70 $0.84 $0.84
6 ounces $0.26 $0.28 $0.30 $0.36 $0.44 $0.57 $0.71 $0.71
7 ounces $0.13 $0.15 $0.17 $0.23 $0.31 $0.44 $0.58 $0.58
8 ounces $0.00 $0.02 $0.04 $0.10 $0.18 $0.31 $0.45 $0.45
9 ounces $0.48 $0.51 $0.54 $0.62 $0.72 $0.85 $0.99 $0.99
10 ounces $0.32 $0.35 $0.38 $0.46 $0.56 $0.69 $0.83 $0.83
11 ounces $0.16 $0.19 $0.22 $0.30 $0.40 $0.53 $0.67 $0.67
12 ounces $0.00 $0.03 $0.06 $0.14 $0.24 $0.37 $0.51 $0.51
13 ounces $0.84 $0.88 $0.92 $1.02 $1.14 $1.28 $1.43 $1.43
14 ounces $0.56 $0.60 $0.64 $0.74 $0.86 $1.00 $1.15 $1.15
15 ounces $0.28 $0.32 $0.36 $0.46 $0.58 $0.72 $0.87 $0.87
15.999 ounces $0.00 $0.04 $0.08 $0.18 $0.30 $0.44 $0.59 $0.59

 

Parcel Select Ground (Commercial Base Pricing)

  • Shipping rates for Parcel Select Ground will decrease by an average of 1.3% in 2019.
  • For parcels weighing between 3 lbs. and 18 lbs. and traveling to farther zones (Zone 5-9), every cell is seeing a rate decrease in 2019.
  • Parcel Select Group is also seeing a rate decrease for all zones for parcels weighing between 21 to 70 pounds
  • The Dimensional Weight (DIM) divisor for Parcel Select Ground packages over 1 cubic foot (1728 cubic inches) is being adjusted from 193 to 166.
Parcel Select Ground – 2019 Rates (Commercial Base Pricing)
INCREASE PER PACKAGE – 2019 rates vs. 2018 rates
Weight
(lbs.)
Zones
1 & 2
Zone
3
Zone
4
Zone
5
Zone
6
Zone
7
Zone
8
Zone
9
1 $0.30 $0.18 $0.29 $0.31 $0.28 $0.25 $0.20 $0.20
2 $0.22 $0.26 $0.38 $0.20 $0.04 ($0.30) ($0.23) ($0.23)
3 $0.31 $0.21 ($0.23) ($0.20) ($0.60) ($0.34) ($0.40) ($0.40)
4 $0.30 $0.05 $0.02 ($0.51) ($0.67) ($0.77) ($0.88) ($0.88)
5 $0.30 ($0.27) ($0.35) ($0.52) ($0.72) ($0.84) ($0.97) ($0.97)
6 $0.29 ($0.60) ($0.59) ($0.62) ($0.27) ($0.51) ($0.60) ($0.60)
7 $0.01 ($0.33) ($0.68) ($0.36) ($0.34) ($0.55) ($0.63) ($0.63)
8 ($0.39) ($0.16) ($0.27) ($0.71) ($0.47) ($0.57) ($0.66) ($0.66)
9 $0.19 ($0.06) $0.11 ($0.75) ($0.49) ($0.59) ($0.69) ($0.69)
10 $0.05 $0.08 $0.13 ($0.79) ($0.51) ($0.62) ($0.73) ($0.73)


Media Mail

  • Media Mail rates will increase by 2.95% in 2019.
  • A 1 lb. package traveling to Zone 8 will cost $2.75 in 2019 compared to $2.66 currently.
Media Mail – 2019 Rates
INCREASE PER PACKAGE – 2019 rates vs. 2018 rates
Weight
(lbs.)
2019 2018 Increase
1 $2.75 $2.66 $0.09
2 $3.27 $3.17 $0.10
3 $3.79 $3.68 $0.11
4 $4.31 $4.19 $0.12
5 $4.83 $4.70 $0.13
6 $5.35 $5.21 $0.14
7 $5.87 $5.72 $0.15
8 $6.39 $6.23 $0.16
9 $6.91 $6.74 $0.17
10 $7.43 $7.25 $0.18

COMING SOON:  Next week, we will outline the 2019 rate increase for International shipping options.

7 Online Marketing Mistakes To Avoid

October 12th, 2018 Comments off

Online marketing can open up your business to a whole new world of customers, drive your sales up, and even help you connect with buyers on a deeper level. But what happens when you’re doing it all wrong? Read on to find out how these seven online marketing pitfalls could end up costing you dearly.

1. Not Making Use of Ad Targeting

With online ads, like social media promotions, you can reach tens of millions of people, but the wider you cast your net, the more it will cost you. What you need to focus on is maximizing your ad dollars and that doesn’t mean overspending. It means making the most of the money you do spend. Geo-targeting your ads to reach only the users who have access to your products, or targeting the age groups your product is geared towards will give you more revenue for your ad spend. Plus, it will save you from wasting money on users who are very unlikely to become customers.

2. Undervaluing Social Influencer Promotions

While traditional ads are excellent and the targeting feature makes them much more lucrative, discounting social influencer marketing is a big mistake many small businesses make. If you are careful in selecting an influencer with a large and engaged fan base, who already has the audience you are specifically looking to target, and whose content is in line with your business, you can see a real impact with social influencer campaigns.

3. Buying Fake Social Followers

Investing in black market services to help boost your numbers almost always backfires on brands. Even if your following is high, users can see when engagement is low – and so can Google! This may actually blacklist your website or social channels and decrease the confidence users will have in your brand. Smaller, more engaged audiences always outperform accounts with tons of followers and minimal interactions. Some brands also turn to automated commenting with bot services, but again, this will hurt your business more than anything else.

4. Not Offering Enough Rewards

Customers can have a hard time trusting a new brand on the market. Offering rewards like free shipping, discounts, or other limited promos can encourage your potential client base to give you a try. It’s also great to reward loyal customers so they continue to share your brand with others. Long-term, rewards work in your favor.

5. Not Providing Content

Whoever said users don’t want to read much online was sorely mistaken. Users actually prefer to connect with brands online and engage with them prior to making a purchase. Providing quality content can increase your connection to your potential consumer base and encourage customers to trust your brand more readily. Your content doesn’t need to be excessively lengthy. Choose quality over quantity and make sure everything you post adds value to your website and your reputation.

6. Not Engaging with Followers

Posting great content to your website and social channels is a good start, but you have to go the extra step and connect with your users on a more personal level. When followers comment, you should interact with them. This is your chance to reply, ask another question and really start a conversation with them. Opening up communication with your fan base can boost your engagement and encourage new followers.

7. Not Tracking Your Social Successes and Failures

Whether it’s promotions or social influencer campaigns, you need to keep track of conversions. This way, you will know exactly which ads are working and which aren’t. Some techniques work well in theory, but in practice, may not be right for your particular business. You need to find out which promotions work best for your brand and avoid wasting money on ads and campaigns that aren’t converting into revenue for you. You should also track the page views and shareability of your content to find out what your audience wants and appreciates.

Customer Care Team Member Spotlight: Andrew

October 5th, 2018 Comments off

 

We’re super excited to be celebrating our 12th Annual Customer Care Week at Stamps.com during October 1-5, 2018. Customer Service Week is a nationally recognized event devoted to acknowledging the importance of customer service and honoring the people who provide it at its best. At Stamps.com, our award-winning Customer Care team helps us shape our mailing and shipping product, being the eyes and ears for our customers to alert us to issues and suggest new product features.

In honor of Customer Service week, we would like to introduce you to Stamps.com Customer Care team member Andrew as he shares the challenges that Customer Support agents deal with every day and the most memorable call he has received.

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Customer Care Team Member Spotlight: Glenn

October 5th, 2018 Comments off

 

We’re super excited to be celebrating our 12th Annual Customer Care Week at Stamps.com during October 1-5, 2018. Customer Service Week is a nationally recognized event devoted to acknowledging the importance of customer service and honoring the people who provide it at its best. At Stamps.com, our award-winning Customer Care team helps us shape our mailing and shipping product, being the eyes and ears for our customers to alert us to issues and suggest new product features.

In honor of Customer Service week, we would like to introduce you to Stamps.com Customer Care team member Glenn as he shares how being bilingual has helped him better serve customers.

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Customer Care Team Member Spotlight: Carlos

October 4th, 2018 Comments off

 

We’re super excited to be celebrating our 12th Annual Customer Care Week at Stamps.com during October 1-5, 2018. Customer Service Week is a nationally recognized event devoted to acknowledging the importance of customer service and honoring the people who provide it at its best. At Stamps.com, our award-winning Customer Care team helps us shape our mailing and shipping product, being the eyes and ears for our customers to alert us to issues and suggest new product features.

In honor of Customer Service week, we would like to introduce you to Stamps.com Customer Care team member Carlos as he shares what makes his work fulfilling.

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