As a business owner that frequently uses the mail to correspond with existing customers and market your services to potential customers, you’ve probably wondered if rather than managing your mailing needs by hand, you should streamline the process by getting a postage meter. 

To help you make an informed decision, we have compiled answers to some of the usual questions business owners have about postage meters.

  1. What is a postage meter?

A postage meter is a machine that prints postage directly onto a piece of mail or piece of adhesive tape which you then affix to your mailing piece.

  1. How can my business benefit from a postage meter?
  • A postage meter will save your business time because you’ll no longer have to make trips to, and wait in line at, the Post Office to purchase stamps. Instead, you can download postage 24/7.
  • A postage meter will save your business money because postage purchased through a postage meter costs less (you get the commercial rate) than if you bought stamps from the Post Office. In addition, postage meters automatically calculate rates and weigh your mailing piece, so you’ll never apply more postage than necessary.
  • No more licking stamps.
  1. How do I get a postage meter?

You can’t buy a postage meter. They can only be leased from one of 5 providers that are authorized by the USPS. You can find a local provider by searching “Mailing Equipment” on Google.

  1. How much does a postage meter cost?

The authorized providers determine how much it will cost to lease a postage meter. As a ballpark though, you can expect to pay $25-$45 a month for a low volume machine. If you’re going to be sending out a high volume of mail each month, the cost to lease an appropriate postage meter can be as high as $1,000 per month.

  1. How do I know which postage meter is right for my business?

There are a variety of postage meters to choose from. A basic meter can be quite small and require the user to hand feed each mail piece. They are ideal for a company that sends out less than 100 mail pieces a month. At the other end of the spectrum are large postage meters that can fold, stuff, weigh and apply postage. These are ideal for companies that need to send out anywhere from 10,000-20,000 mail pieces per month.

The best way to determine which postage meter fits your business needs is to speak with a postage meter rep.

  1. Is the cost of a postage meter tax deductible?

Yes. Leasing a postage meter is a tax-deductible business expense.

  1. Are there any disadvantages to having a postage meter?

Depending on your business and your mailing needs there may be some turn offs to getting a postage meter. 

  • If you want a postage meter you have to commit to a lease that will be anywhere between 1-5 years. The monthly lease payment could be as low as $25 and as much as $1,000.
  • In addition to the monthly lease payment, your postage meter comes with other costs i.e., ink and postage tape.
  • A postage meter is a piece of equipment which means it can break down. If it does, you will have maintenance costs to pay for.
  1. Is a postage meter the only option if we don’t want to manage our mail manually?

No. As an alternative to the manual processing of mail or a postage meter, some companies and organizations will opt for an online mailing service such as Switch.

Web-based Switch handles the envelopes, stamps and sending of your mail. This means you don’t have to spend time stuffing envelopes, managing mailing supplies, dealing with postage meters, or taking trips to the Post Office.

Best of all, you can try out Switch for free. There are no leases to commit to, monthly fees, credit required, commitments or minimum usage. You only need to pay when you want to post a letter.

Eliminating the manual processing of mail can have a positive impact on your business

The more efficient your company runs, the more time you will have to focus on serving clients and growing your business. Whether you opt for a postage meter or an online solution like Switch, removing the task of manually managing your company’s mail from your employees’ hands, will save employee hours, reduce your mailing spend and enhance the speed and accuracy of your mailing process.