Ask Randy: USPS Updates

What can you tell us about the recent postage price announcement?

    The pattern continues of price increases happening two times a year, one increase in January and one increase in July. In January we saw an increase of 1.2% for Marketing Mail.

    In early April, the USPS filed a notice with the Postal Regulatory Commission to increase First Class postal rates by roughly 7% from $0.68 to $0.73 and increase broader postal products by 7.8%. If approved, these increases will take effect on July 14th, 2024.

    Stamp prices alone have increased 36% since 2019. The USPS has stated, “These price adjustments are needed to achieve the financial stability sought by the organization’s Delivering for America 10-Year Plan”. The statement goes on to say, “USPS prices remain among the most affordable in the world.”

    What changes can we expect next year for the USPS promotions?

      The USPS filed their proposed 2025 promotions with the Postal Regulatory Commission featuring two new promotions and a new add-on program providing customers an additional 1% discount. We expect the final determination of modifications and approvals by early June. Here is the breakdown of the proposed edits –

      Updates to Existing Promotions

      Starting in 2025, all per-piece discounts and incentives will be applied before calculating promotional discounts.

      Tactile, Sensory & Interactive Promotions (4%)

      -Decreasing from 5% to 4%.

      -Gloss paper stock alone will NOT qualify for this promotion as in the past.

      Rebranded Promotions

      Integrated Technology Promotion (3%)

      -Formerly known as Emerging Technology Promotion.

      -Will continue as a flexible 6-month window.

      -USPS is considering mandating personalized QR codes for qualification instead of general QR codes.

      First-Class Mail Advertising Promotion (3%)

      -Replaces the Personalized Color Trans promo.

      -Encourages additional marketing content on transactional First-Class letters and flats.

      New Promotion Introduced

      Continuous Contact (3%)

      -This new discount is designed to promote continuous touch points to a household address two or more times during the promotion period.

      -Each mail piece must be iterative or complementary, not duplicative.

      New Add-On Promotions

      For any mail piece that participates in other promotions (other than Reply Mail IMbA Base/Primary Promotion), the customer can add on a 1% discount for Informed Delivery or Sustainability. The Postal Service plans to offer these promotions from January 1, 2025, through December 31, 2025.

      First-Class Mail automation letters, cards, and flats and USPS Marketing Mail automation letters and flats that meet the promotion’s requirements are eligible.

      The Informed Delivery Add-On/Upgrade Promotion:

      -Offers an additional 1% discount for mailings that incorporate best practices and techniques in their Informed Delivery campaigns.

      -There will not be a separate stand-alone Informed Delivery promotion in 2025.

      – Must be combined with another promotion to qualify.

      The Sustainability Add-On/Upgrade Promotion:

      -Encourages mailers to adopt a higher level of recyclable paper in their mailings by offering an additional 1% discount to mailers who prove their printer is using one of several approved certifications.

      -Certification logo must be printed on the piece or envelope. (SFI or FSC). SPC is already equipped with these certifications to help you qualify.

      -Must be combined with another promotion to qualify.

      What is the status of the Electric Delivery Vehicles?

      The USPS unveiled its first electric vehicle charging station at its South Atlanta Sorting and Delivery Center. These stations will continue to roll out at hundreds of new centers nationwide. 25,000 new vehicles are coming this year and 100,000 more over the next four years.

      What can our clients expect from the 2024 National Postal Forum?

      This year the National Postal Forum will be hosted in Indianapolis, Indiana from June 2nd through June 5th. The theme of the event is “Connecting at the Crossroads,” promising valuable insights and networking opportunities. USPS Postmaster General Louis DeJoy will lead the opening session, where the USPS will reveal updates, enhancements, and other important information. The exhibit hall sold out with over 160 exhibiting companies.

      SPC will once again have a large presence at the NPF. Come visit us at booth #1308.

      The National Postal Forum offers an unparalleled opportunity to network and forge valuable professional connections within the dynamic mailing and shipping industry. Gain exclusive USPS insights, hear from industry experts, and delve into cutting-edge technology applications.

      Randy Weiler, SPC’s VP of Postal Affairs and Logistics, and the SPC team are here to field any of your USPS questions. Simply send your question in an email to #AskRandyand we will respond with an answer.

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