Fulluv Scents has shipped internationally for years and most of our international shipments are first class. First class labels however, cannot be printed online via eBay, PayPal, USPS click n ship, or really any other method. So, every day we faithfully drug ourselves to the post office hoping to get the one clerk who was actually friendly with us.
Since November, 2010, I have been to the post office two times. We discovered that we can print international first class labels using stamps.com software. It is a paid service at $15.99 per month and so very worth it.
The benefits to us:
1. print ALL postage from one page within the software - huge time saver as all of the orders are on one page, unlike PayPal.
2. Pay for all postage at one time using a credit card on file. No more accounting for several items. It is one daily shipping debit to our account.
3. Postage is paid with a credit card - not PayPal - meaning we get rewards. With 1.5% back on our card, the rewards alone pay for the service.
4. Carrier pickup is arranged from within the software, which automatically calculates number and weight of packages.
5. A scan form is printed. This form is scanned by the carrier and PROVES that the item was received by the post office. The scan form is perhaps the most invaluable tool offered with this software.
6. Insurance is available for first class international packages - this is not available at all through the post office.
At a generous 50 cents and 45 total minutes per trip, we are saving about $14 in fuel, and 21 hours of time per month. The speed of printing saves at least 30 minutes daily, equaling another 14 hours per month. In consideration of the additional time saved in accounting for batches instead of individual postage payments an average of 40 total hours at minimum wage is nearly $300 per month. We are earning 1.5% in card rewards by paying with credit card. And our customers know that when we say we shipped an item, we can prove that the item was really shipped, whether domestic or international. Don't misread that. I didn't say we can prove delivery for untracked items. I said we can prove shipment, which does decrease shipping inquiries.
This service has undoubtedly become an invaluable part of our business and is recommended to anyone who ships a high volume of packages.