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Online Shipping Services Get Easier

USPS, Stamps.com move to simplify shipping for e-commerce merchants.

Although the World Wide Web has forever altered the way people communicate, advertise and shop, the postal service finds solidarity with online sellers who rely on “snail mail.”

The U.S. Postal Service and Stamps.com are both placing their focus on those small e-commerce merchants by creating services aimed at making shipping more efficient and advertising more centralized.

USPS has upgraded its Click-N-Ship service by increasing its address book capacity, doubling its cart load and tripling the online refund period. Users can also save their labels in PDF format and should be able to more easily find and track labels, according to USPS.

Additionally, USPS will soon test Click-N-Ship for Business, as well as launch Every Door Direct Mail, a tool that will allow merchants to specify the neighborhoods they want to target for mailers.

“Most importantly, it’s a gateway product. It brings small businesses to the mail,” says Paul Vogel, president and chief marketing and sales officer of USPS. “Every Door Direct Mail allows small business to target customers near their place of business with a free online mapping tool. There is no need for names, street addresses—they just choose the market coverage by row, by neighborhood, by ZIP code, or even by city.”

Stamps.com is also looking to be an efficient and effective resource for online sellers, says Eric Nash, director of online marketing at Stamps.com.

It released a free 2012 Priority Mail Rate Guide that’s intended to help sellers determine the shipping costs of Priority Mail in the eight USPS shipping zones. The rates reflect online purchase costs—as opposed to the more expensive option of purchasing at the post office—and includes Regional Box rates to help compare its sometimes-cheaper rate to the Priority Mail rate.

About the author

Sarah Brown
Sarah Brown is a freelance writer who writes about e-commerce and small businesses. She recently graduated from Chico State with a journalism degree and is also a budding online entrepreneur, having launched two Web businesses and her own line of handmade products. Opinions expressed here may not be shared by The Online Seller and/or its principals.



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