What is a Postage Meter?

Learn what postage meters do and how they can help your small business save money
what is a postage meter
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Similar to a printing postage with a direct thermal label printer, a postage meter is a device that allows you to print postage at home or at your office. However, meters are a whole lot more than just printers. Postage meters come with scales built into them, allowing you to weigh your package or envelopes with extreme accuracy.

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Metered Mail vs. Stamped Mail: What’s the Difference?

Different from relying on traditional stamped mail, many businesses use metered mail to process and purchase postage for bulk letters.

Metered mail runs through a postage meter, which comes with a weighing scale, and effectively “prints” the sufficient amount of postage onto envelopes. Metered mail tends to be more reliable than using regular First-Class stamps, since meters calculate the exact amount of postage needed based on your envelope’s exact weight. This removes the risk of paying incorrect amounts for postage (for instance, underpaying or overpaying).

Metered mail also features reduced rates, so that the postage paid on each piece of mail works out slightly cheaper than it would be if you use a regular First-Class Mail Stamp. This difference in price allows many businesses to capture significant savings—but the exact value of how much a business saves all depends on how much mail they’re sending out in the first place.

How Using a Postage Meter Can Benefit Your Small Business

Using a meter can save your small business a lot of time and money. Believe it or not, most small businesses aren’t weighing their shipments accurately! Therefore, they end up overpaying (or underpaying) for postage. It’s a common problem that we see all the time, especially for new E-commerce businesses. Postage meters take guessing out of the equation, so you end up paying for the EXACT amount of postage that you need—no more, no less!

Additionally, they also reduce the likelihood of failed deliveries due to illegible addresses. Therefore, you save time that you would normally spend on returned shipments or reprinting shipping labels.

Pro Tip: You know how important it is to save money on shipping for your eCommerce business. Every dollar counts! Studies show that small businesses can shave off about 20% of their total shipping and mailing costs by using a meter. Just some food for thought.

How Can I Get My Hands on a Postage Meter?

The most common way to get your hands on a meter is to rent one for a monthly fee. We recommend going through a company called Pitney Bowes. Feel free to head over to their website and browse through some of the various options. If you’re on the hunt for one, our favorite is the Pitney Bowes’ SendPro+ Postage Meter. It’s a relatively inexpensive option for sending out both packages and regular mail…and you can process up to 65 pieces of mail per minute!

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