Logistics has always been a tricky affair. There is a multitude of things to keep in mind while handling operations, right from the start when the product gets picked up to the point when it is delivered. Most companies need to function as precise as clockwork and standardise all their operations to achieve their delivery targets. However, private companies or businesses are not the only ones who make use of such facilities. An efficient and well-connected logistics network is a necessity for entire nations. Delivery of goods is no longer a luxury but an essential public service. As such, many countries own and operate their own official postal or delivery companies, which operate at low or subsidised rates for the good of the public. The United States Postal Service is one such company.
2) What is USPS?
The United States Postal Service, USPS for short, is a postal agency owned by the United States Government. Its main responsibilities are carrying out postal as well as delivery services in the United States and its insular areas. Unlike private carriers, USPS reaches each and every address in the US, delivering to over 160 million locations throughout the country. It also has a significant international presence when it comes to sending shipments or deliveries from the United States. It delivers to over 180 countries across the globe.
3) Why do People use USPS?
Many things set USPS apart from other carriers or delivery agencies. The most obvious difference is that it is a federal organisation operated by the US Government. However, it also provides many benefits that draw customers towards USPS to use its services:-
3.1) Free Pickup
USPS allows customers to set their own convenient pickup times for packages, free of cost. They can easily schedule a time for the parcel to be picked up right from their doorstep. The caveat is that at least one of the packages being picked up should be using a USPS expedited service, such as Priority Mail.
3.2) Delivery to Military Addresses
USPS allows customers to send shipments or mail to military addresses throughout the world, and that too at subsidised domestic rates. They do, however, require the customs information so that the package reaches the correct location without being held back.
3.3) Tracking Facilities
Just like newer private carriers, USPS has also begun to use technology to maintain records of shipments and allow customers to track them easily. They can now check the delivery progress via phone or text at the click of a button.
3.4) Discounted Rates
With USPS being one of the most popular and widely used postal carriers, it has agreements in place with numerous logistics platforms to offer discounted rates up to a certain volume or quantity of shipments.
3.5) Free Supplies
USPS allows customers to make use of their free supplies such as envelopes, stamps, stickers, labels, and even boxes. This service is usually availed only when sending shipments through certain classes of mail.
USPS offers a very convenient postal service, namely USPS Click-N-Ship. It offers hassle-free international shipping. The shipments can be shipped directly from the home or office. Click-N-Ship also offers free boxes and envelopes and printable customs documentation as well as shipping labels. Today, we shall mainly read about the feature of creating and printing labels.
4) USPS Shipping Labels
With the Click-N-Ship service mentioned above, customers can quickly create and pay for USPS shipping labels. These labels are available for almost all mail classes, such as the Priority Mail, Express Mail, and Global Airmail Parcel Post classes. In most cases, even postage is included.
While not necessary, the prudent option would be to properly weigh the packages before generating USPS shipping labels. This can be done easily using a scale. The reason for this is that if the weight turns out to be more than mentioned, you might have to pay additional USPS postage charges. Alternatively, you can also use the Flat Rate envelopes instead, which allow you to mail any weight that fits inside the box or envelope. The charges range from a low fee of $4.05 to $14.40.
Payments for these can be made using a card, and the labels can also be quickly printed at home using a personal computer, and printer. If required, customers also have the option of printing Click-N- Ship labels without postage. The Click-N-Ship service will automatically find the ZIP codes as well as calculate the respective postage charges.
5) How to create USPS Shipping Labels?
In order to create shipping labels for your USPS packages, all you need to do is to buy Priority Mail or Priority Mail Express postage for the packaging. Before making any decisions, you might want to compare prices and service types. You can calculate the required prices as per your postage and shipment weight, and then a label will be generated. You can add any insurance if needed, or even any additional delivery instructions or services that you might require. Next up, you can easily print the generated labels sitting at home as shown below.
6) How to print USPS shipping Labels?
To print USPS shipping labels at home, you will need a printer and a personal computer, as well as a free USPS account if you don’t have one already.
- Enter the package’s ship-to address and weight. Alternatively, opt for the Priority Mail Flat Rate boxes.
- By default, tracking facilities are turned on and there is usually a fee of $50 per package for insurance purposes.
- If the shipment is to be sent internationally, you will need to fill out the customs documentation.
- The label is then created. Once you have made the payment, you can then print it within minutes.
- With the label printed, you will want to schedule a pickup time for the package.
If you’re not near your computer, you can also visit the site on your smartphone or tablet and create the label there. Once the label is created, you can pay for it and send it to your printer.
7) USPS Shipping Label Broker
If you are away from home or do not have access to a printer, you can easily make use of the USPS Label Broker service. It works by providing customers with a QR code and a Label Broker ID. Busy customers can use the QR code to access the labels which are printed by USPS associates right at the Post Office location when the customer is ready to send the shipment. If they choose not to print at the post office, they can also print the labels themselves from USPS.com when they do have access to a printer.
Today, we took a quick look at USPS and the way it manages shipping labels. As can be seen, customers have a lot of choices when it comes to the way they choose to generate or print USPS shipping labels. They can either opt for flat-rate mail classes or pay as per weight. They can print by themselves at home, or they can use the Label Broker to print directly at the post office. Best of all, most of these services are done at a relatively nominal charge as USPS is a federal agency and does not have to meet profit requirements as other private carriers do. All in all, it is definitely a solid choice if you are looking for a reliable channel to send a quick shipment both domestically and internationally.