USPS

New USPS EDDM Mapping Tool Shows Costs For Individual Carrier Routes

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A new “enhanced” mapping tool at the U.S. Postal Service’s EDDM website allows business customers to select individual routes for mailings and also shows costs per route.

The tool can be found online at https://www.usps.com/business/every-door-direct-mail.htm (select the “Use the Tool Now” option).

I pulled up the information for my post office’s ZIP Code and delivery routes by entering 75214 in the search field. I found that my delivery route (13) is one of the more expensive routes for full coverage mailings, costing $140.51 for delivery to 969 delivery points. (This route has several apartment complexes.) The carrier route next to mine (Route 12) has the cheapest cost, at $38.28 for delivery to 264 addresses.

Both are tremendous deals. If a business wanted to deliver to all 17, 799 deliveries in the ZIP it would only cost $2580.86.

I’ve seen very few EDDM mailings for my route, primarily because of the demographics. The routes with the highest number of mailings have been to routes with homes in the $300,000 plus range, with the routes with the million dollar homes being hit the most.

For the right business – primarily service businesses such as dry cleaners, pizza delivery companies, etc. – EDDM presents a great opportunity to target selected neighborhoods at very attractive rates.

But I’m concerned that EDDM is too much of a great thing and will eventually pull advertisers away from mailings that bring in more revenue, ultimately bringing down USPS revenues. I’m also concerned that customers will eventually rebel against more ads in their mailboxes. Ultimately, I see mail as items with addresses. (Even ADVO/Valassis mailings have/had either an address or accompanying card with address.) I’m concerned the USPS will be competing against itself, and with major mailing partners, with a totally new service that best can be described as a flyer service.

With that said, if the USPS is going to do something it might as well do it right. Here are a few ideas to make the service better:

1. The online mapping tool is great. How about a map in local post office lobbies too?

2. To discourage companies from abusing EDDM with flimsy, cheap mailings that might look trashy to customers and denigrate the service, require mailings to be either two sizes (letter size and legal size) printed on a quality of paper designated by the Postal Service.

3. Instead of an official postage imprint, use this space to advertise the EDDM service with a Mr. ZIP type logo and EDDM website address.

4. Require every EDDM mailing to have a cover sheet with the following additional information: 1.) Barcode to scan when delivered  2.) If the mailing is for residential, businesses, apartments, or all. (I’ve had a couple of partial mailings and had no idea if the mailings were intended for residential, business, or apartments.)

5. Additionally, develop delivery guidelines that take into account the fact these pieces do not have addresses. Here’s a couple of reasons why:

a. My delivery unit has been told by the Area Manager in order to make our “numbers” we should split six routes a day. If each of these routes are split among four or five carriers, then it’s difficult to split the mailings for each route. Sometimes part of the mailings are not delivered all in the same day and the next day part of the EDDM mailings will still be at the carrier case and the carriers the next day sometimes don’t have a clue as to what portion of the route still needs an EDDM mailing. So what happens is portions of the routes will receive more than one mailing and other portions will receive no mailings. The USPS should require that each set of EDDM mailings be accomplished in the same day. Additionally, this will alleviate the possibility that carriers will pass off the mailings to another carrier or even to another route in order to make their day easier.