Using the Direct Mail Cost Calculator

Sending direct mail is an impactful channel of advertising. The ROI is mostly positive, which makes direct mail advertising a profitable channel. However, a lot of companies are concerned about its cost. They have a notion that direct mail campaigns are always expensive and difficult to be conducted. With PostGrid’s direct mail cost calculator, you can check the cost of even the smallest campaigns.

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How to Calculate Direct Mail Cost?

It is very crucial to calculate the total cost while planning a direct mail campaign. The direct mail calculator allows you to compute the total cost of the campaign easily. This figure will give you a clear picture of every small detail. Also, you will see how every factor adds up to the direct mail cost.

For calculating the direct mail cost, you will have to enter or select from a number of sizes, printing, and mailing options. The prices of the options you selected will be added up, and a final number will be shown. Designing costs remain the same for any number of direct mail. But, the printing and delivery costs vary according to the quantity as well as quality.

For calculating ROI, you can also check out our Direct Mail ROI Calculator.

How to Use the Direct Mail Cost Calculator?

There are many selections to be made for using the direct mail cost calculator. All the factors that affect the costing are included. Marketers should select from the choices given in the calculator. All the prices will be listed, and the total direct mail cost will be computed after the required selections are made.

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The factors affecting the direct mail cost are

Type of Marketing Collateral and Its Size

Catalogs, flyers, postcards, letters, and brochures are some of the types of direct mail marketing pieces that marketers get to select from. The prices of all of these collaterals are different. The size of these pieces also adds up to the direct mail cost. If you have a low budget, consider small-sized collaterals. Sometimes, the size of the mailing depends on the message to be communicated.

Number of Direct Mail to Be Sent

The volume of the campaign also massively affects the direct mail cost. The smaller the size of the campaign, the lesser will be the cost. You will have to feed in a specific number in the direct mail cost calculator.

Format and Printing

Various paper stocks, ink, and coating options are available for direct mail. Thick papers and glossy coatings cost way more than thin papers and plain matte coating. The computation of direct mail cost is very flexible, owing to so many handy alternatives.

Printing costs vary drastically based on the number of pages, quality, size of paper, quantity, and colors. Bulk discounts are offered on large orders of direct mail.

Variable data printing is an option used for personalization on every direct mail. Although it can get a little expensive, variable data printing is worth it.

Kinds of Mailing Lists

There are different types of mailing lists that cost different amounts. On the one hand, residential lists are quite affordable. On the other hand, business lists typically cost higher.

However, the direct mail cost is exceptionally reduced when companies use their list. Plus, companies can build event-triggered lists themselves, using direct mail automation tools and integrating them with your CRM.


Normally, there are three ways to get your direct mail designed. Either you get it done in-house, you rent templates online, or you hire a designer. The first two choices cost much less than hiring a creative designer. The prices vary differently depending on the type of design you are looking for. The overall layout, copywriting, and colors also add up to designing costs. Remember that the designs and texts should be meant to engage and persuade.

Delivery Options and Rates

Postal rates for delivery greatly decide your direct mail cost.

  • First-class postage is the most expensive option, but it offers services like priority processing and faster delivery.
  • Standard mailing is exclusively available for sending out direct mail. It is also called the marketing mailing option. The costs for standard mailing are very reasonable. They usually take a lot more days to deliver as compared to first class.
  • Saturated mailing is ideal for sending direct mail only in a particular area. All the addresses in a saturated mailing list are located around each other bringing down the postage costs.
  • NCOA, CASS, and pre-sorting can fetch you huge postal discounts.

The direct mail cost calculator will show you different prices for every different option. Therefore, you get to select the options after seeing their prices.

A certain fee is fixed for each of the options which are all summed up and multiplied with the number of direct mail to be sent. The total amount hereby shown is the total direct mail cost.

Ways to Minimize Direct Mail Cost

A number of methods are used to reduce direct mail costs. Using the direct mail cost calculator will help you make wise choices. Additionally, there are some more things you can take care of:

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Build Your Own Mailing List

This brings down the complete cost of renting mailing lists. Moreover, the mailing lists that you build yourself are a lot more exclusive and useful. Although, you can start by renting some lists and sending out excellent direct mail to them.

Bulk Mailing

Bulk mailing will save you a lot of money. There are huge discounts available on bulk printing and mailing.

Get Your Mailing Lists Cleansed

Having a cleansed mailing list is more important than having a long mailing list. PostGrid offers address validation software and standardization. A cleansed mailing list increases your mail deliverability rate and eliminates wasted spending on returned mail.

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