USPS Intelligent Mail Package Barcode
Are you ready? If not, we can help.
There’s a lot to know about the Intelligent Mail Package Barcode, and the stakes are pretty high. For example, an average 2.5 pound book, shipping Bound Printed Matter, would cost 79 cents more without the IMpb. If you do drop shipping, it’s even worse, because you lose those discounts too. If you’re not ready, we can help get you there quickly and efficiently.
Intelligent Mail Package Barcode (IMpb)
Effective January 2013, the USPS requires an IMpb bar code for all parcel/package services.
If you don’t have it, you lose your presort discounts.
If you drop ship, you lose that privilege and discount.
Effective January 2014, there is also a 20 cent penalty per piece.
You must submit a data file, which is not a Mail.Dat, to the USPS for each shipment.
There is a strict certification process for the barcode printing, and the data file.
IMpb Related Services
Guidance through entire certification process.
Programming and consultation in preparing the new label format.
Pre-certification examination of label samples to catch formatting errors.
Advice in passing the print quality standards.
Ability to format the labels and send you print-ready PDFs.
Programming and consulting in creating the package data file.
If desired, we can prepare and transmit the file on your behalf.
We provide as much or as little help as you need in a fee for service structure.
Have you wanted an online store or promotional website? Maybe you’ve even tried to make one. There are a lot of options out there. Some companies will offer you a “free” website, only to discover they have high monthly charges, limited features, and lack user control. Then you find out you’re locked in and can’t easily move your site if you decide you don’t like the service.
Here’s how we’re different. We use inexpensive, standards based tools and modules to build your site quickly, saving money. We don’t sell the domain name and hosting. Rather, we help you make those purchases from the best companies. You’re always in control. We take care of the technical stuff and let you concentrate on presenting your products and services with your unique voice and vision.
We have worked with numerous publishers and store owners, and have researched and developed several special features you can easily take advantage of. For example, our online stores all feature Google Shopping Feed modules. This means you’re able to present your products to customers without having to pay expensive seller fees on sites like Amazon and eBay.
Other features include, lead tracking, slideshows, custom formatting and more. If the standard tools and themes don’t look or work the way you want, we can modify them to suit your needs.
Whatever you have in mind, we can help make it happen.
Mail Manifesting with Bound Printed Matter
When you’re shipping books, there’s no cheaper way to do it than using USPS Bound Printed Matter (BPM). BPM is around $1 cheaper per book than Media Mail. However, unless you’re mailing 300 or more of the same book, you may think you can’t use those rates. That’s where Mail Manifesting comes in. You start by printing identification numbers on the labels. You then account for those numbers on a special report. Once you’ve done this, the USPS will allow you to mix books of different weights and sizes into one bulk mailing. One extra feature of BPM, the USPS now offers free tracking!
On days you don’t have 300 pieces to qualify for the bulk rate, single piece rate on Bound Printed Matter (available for 50 pounds of mail) is still about 50 cents cheaper than Media Mail.
Our Mail Manifesting solution is different than most. Other companies want you to pay a large price up front, and big annual license fees every year. We allow you to pay as you go. Depending on your volume, we can offer a low price per piece, per file processed, or a flat rate per month if your volume justifies it.
There are USPS permit fees and certifications you’ll need, but we guide you through their process to make everything as easy and seamless as possible.
If you have a shipping system, we can probably integrate into it. We’ve been providing this remote mail manifesting solution to book printers, distributors and publishers since 2003. We have our process very optimized and simplified. You export a file to us and within 30 minutes you receive the files and paperwork you need for the USPS. We can also provide (or even post) files with the tracking data for your website. If you don’t have a shipping system, we also offer products to serve that need.
Not sure if BPM will help you? If you send us a simple data file (zip code, weight, ship date), we will perform a free analysis to determine your best shipping option.
ShipSYS Shipping System Released to the Public
We have been developing the ShipSYS shipping and inventory control system for over two years. Previously, this was only available as part of a custom programming project. However, we have now created a packaged system that is suitable for general release.
ShipSYS allows for the importing of order data from Amazon, eBay, Half.com and Zencart. It can also be easily extended to import from other systems. It prints packing slips, shipping labels and assists in inventory management. It is integrated into our Remote Bound Printed Matter Mail Manifesting solution. As such, it is primarily designed for businesses that sell books, but can be utilized by anyone. After shipping tracking data can be uploaded back to the selling site.
The system is also growth ready. It ships as a pre-packaged file and database server, providing multi-user access right out of the box. You may not need more than one shipping station to start, but you can add as many as you need without extra licensing fees.
We all know, it’s hard to do anything without a computer. A computer can’t do anything without software. That’s where we come in. Whether you need a multi-user order processing and inventory system, or a web page for your coffee shop, we can help you find the best balance between investment and benefit. If an existing program will do what you need, we can locate it for you. If there isn’t a pre-built solution, we can create a custom system to meet your requirements.
One of our newest products is the ShipSys shipping system. This is a suite of programs designed to provide inventory, packing slip and label printing services for small businesses. The customer is able to import files from Amazon, eBay, Half.com, Zencart and other sources. Packing slips and pick lists are printed. As the items are shipped, tracking data is captured for reporting back to the source selling system. It is integrated into our Remote Mail Manifesting system to allow low-cost USPS shipping, but also provides support for tracking of other shipping methods. The system can be as simple as one workstation, or can scale to support as many shipping stations as needed, all tied to a central server.
Of course, we have developed many web pages over the years, which often involved importing and converting data from prior versions. Web pages have covered a variety of genres, including business information and promotion sites, product based eCommerce sites, stock and decorative photography sales. We have also built web-based inventory and process control systems that allow multiple sites to share information, and even allow customer access to relevant data (and prevent unauthorized access to the system, or to other customer’s information).
An example of this was called Job Ticket. It was set up for a direct mail shop. It was built as a web page in order to provide online access to inventory and job ticket information from multiple locations and devices. Customers can be allowed access to see their inventory and job status. Office personnel have access defined by their business role (Production, Administration, etc). In this situation, security was crucial, both to prevent unauthorized access to the system, and to prevent one customer from gaining access to information related to another customer.
Keeping up with the USPS is a moving target. Their rules and technology are constantly shifting. This presents dangers and opportunities to any business involved in mail or parcel shipping.
We’ve been writing programs and developing procedures to meet USPS regulations since the 1980’s. We know what works, and how fast we have to move when things change. More than that, we know who to ask if we need to clarify a rule, or resolve a dispute in what a rule means.
Want to start a mail house, move your mailing services in house, find the best rate for a new project, or just need help in lowering your distribution costs? Talk to us before you mail, you’ll be glad you did.
We provide USPS Mail Presort and data processing services for a large number of printers, publishers, and mailers. In general, the customer provides a data file, and we process it through in-house and commercial software to provide USPS documentation and label or invoice output (usually PDF files for customer printing).
One of the highlights of this service is our Remote Mail Manifesting service. In this, customers send data files to our systems. They are automatically sorted and prepared as a manifesting mailing. Data files are returned to the customer and transmitted to USPS.
All of these services are pay as you go, saving our customers thousands of dollars in terms of software purchases and license fees, not to mention the postage savings from USPS rules compliance and optimization.
There comes a time in every software system, you need to move on. However, you don’t want to lose the important data you’ve accumulated in the old system, and you certainly don’t want to spend the time and money to rebuild it!
We started dealing with data when magnetic tapes were still in use, yet we’re as current as the latest data access and control systems.
There’s more to a successful data conversion process than programs and data. Our experience has allowed us to develop procedures to analyze and understand the data structures for the input and output file formats. This allows us to determine the most efficient and accurate mapping of the data. More importantly, our procedures ensure data quality, with multiple tests and comparisons of the information throughout the process.
Whether you need to import a mailing list, or convert a website from one eCommerce platform to another, we have the tools and techniques to make your project a success.
Need to find the best software or hardware for a particular application? Perhaps you need an independent opinion in evaluating competing bids on a project. Maybe you’re considering custom software, but you wonder if a commercial package would serve your needs.
Whatever your technical question or problem, we provide the experience and knowledge to help you make the best decision for your business.