Direct Mail

How Much Does It Cost To Mail A Postcard

By 9 May 2024May 22nd, 2024No Comments
how to write a postcard

How Much Does It Cost To Mail A Postcard for Your Marketing Campaign

Sending postcards is an extremely affordable way to communicate when you are leveraging postal service. As per the 2024 recent update, the cost to mail the standard-sized, rectangular postcard via USPS is $0.53. However, the mentioned price is relevant only when you make a USPS postage purchase at the retail channel or through the Post Office, and it may vary for different classes of mail.

how to write a postcard

We all have memories of getting a postcard in the mail! Some are holiday cards from our loved ones, while others are from trips… But, there's one common thing among these postcards—the nostalgic feeling they create, a personal touch!

So, how about using the power of this impactful communication channel for your business?

“People love to be charmed, and postcards help you do that.”

But, there are many things to think about—design, sizes, and, importantly, the postcard mailing cost.

How much does it cost to mail a postcard? Is there any way to bag discounted rates?

We will answer these questions in this blog and guide you on how to avail yourself of the best USPS rates. Let’s begin!

Key Takeaways

  • Postcards come in multiple sizes, with the standard ones being the most economical.
  • Presorting your postcards can lead to lower mailing costs by saving the USPS time and effort.
  • For businesses looking to send postcards in bulk, USPS marketing mail and EDDM offer cost-effective ways to distribute large volumes of postcards.
  • There are different USPS mailing classes to choose from, such as First-Class Mail and USPS Marketing Mail, each offering different benefits and costs.

What Is a Postcard?

Before we dive into learning the cost to mail a postcard, let us clarify its meaning. Of course, USPS treats all mail items differently and charges postage accordingly. Thus, ensure to prepare your postcards based on the Post Office's specifications.

To avail of the lowest postcard postage rate, your items must be:

  • Rectangular
  • At least 3.5” high and 5” long, with a width of 0.0007”
  • Not exceeding 4.25” x 6” x 0.016”

It doesn’t stop you from mailing postcards of varied sizes, but you would have to pay more. You may think it is unnecessary, while many companies use square-shaped postcards to set themselves apart from other items.

But why should you mail postcards over other direct mailing materials, like letters and flyers?

Is it worth choosing this item and paying the cost of mailing postcards?

Not surprisingly, the answer is yes! With the postcard mailing cost being super affordable, postcard marketing has several other benefits, like:

  • Postcards are one of the most impactful marketing tools to help you target your intended audience. They allow you to grab the recipients’ attention in only a few seconds because all people need to do, is flip the postcards over and read.
  • You don’t need to spend a lot on the cost of mailing a postcard. They are the most affordable offline marketing items available.
  • Postcards are compact, leaving very little room to add your message. But, it is more of an advantage than a drawback because you can make your content more memorable. People are more likely to remember a catchy punchline than a few marketing sentences.
  • The postcard cost to mail marketing items is decent when you compare it to your ROI. Also, you can use postcards for various purposes, including inviting customers to an event, promoting the latest offers, introducing new products, etc.

How Much Is It to Mail a Postcard?

Did you know that the standard postcard postage rate is lesser than the price of a forever stamp?

A single stamp costs $0.60, whereas mailing postcards only cost you $0.44.

More reason to select postcards for your marketing campaign, right?

But, there are several USPS mailing classes you must choose from to mail your postcards to the recipients. And they all have different prices and speeds, urging clients to consider the factors carefully before selecting anything.

Below, we have described these options to help you understand which one fits your needs the most:

First-Class Mail

This mailing class is your default option to pay the cost to send a postcard to recipients. Most envelopes and cards you receive in your mailbox are First-Class Mail items. It is available for both on-demand and bulk mailing, making it an ideal choice for mailing marketing postcards.

Please note that the USPS prioritizes First-Class Mail items over Marketing Mail, Library Mail, etc. Thus, you can expect your items to reach their destinations within a short period—mostly one to five business days. Hence, you don’t have to spend much on the postcard mailing cost for speedy deliveries.

Yet, First-Class Mail is a little expensive compared to other classes because it is among the top-end USPS options. Also, you get several features, like eligibility for Certified Mail and insurance coverage. Thus, the cost to mail a postcard via First-Class Mail is between $0.44 and $1.16.

The good news is there is no minimum mailing requirement because First-Class Mail also offers non-presort options. But, you need to mail at least 500 postcards to avail of presort pricing and get the lowest postcard postage rate.

If you don’t have the resources to presort items, try using PostGrid’s direct mail API. We help you prepare and assemble your postcards efficiently. Here is what one of our many happy clients has to say:

“PostGrid’s automated printing and mailing solutions are a game changer. Do you want to presort items and pay low postage rates? Check. Do you need to verify your delivery addresses and see whether you can mail your marketing items to them? Check. The team at PostGrid takes utmost care to help your campaigns succeed.”

USPS Marketing Mail

You can also refer to the USPS Marketing Mail as Standard Mail. Typically, businesses use this service for mailing postcards in bulk and paying the least postcard mailing cost.

You must follow several steps to become eligible for sending Standard Mail. You must acquire a permit and prepare your postcards according to the prescribed weight and dimensions.

Bulk mailing helps you reduce the per-piece cost to mail a postcard, making Standard Mail much more affordable than First-Class Mail. But, it also means that the delivery times are longer. You may need to wait up to 21 working days for your postcards to reach your intended recipients.

The minimum volume to send Standard Mail is 200 pieces. However, nonprofits can bag a special Nonprofit Standard postcard postage rate, offering considerable discounts and concessions.

Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM)

Not having the necessary resources must not prevent you from marketing your products and services. There is always some way to connect with your prospects and customers. And you can get started instantly with the low cost of mailing a postcard!

“Stopping advertising to save money is like stopping your watch to save time.” – Henry Ford.

Thus, the USPS provides a door-to-door mailing service to businesses—EDDM. It lets you send marketing materials to every house in a neighborhood or locality at a low postcard mailing cost. You can also select the ZIP code you want to target.

So, how much is postage for a postcard if you opt for EDDM?

Fortunately, EDDM is the most affordable option to mail postcards at only $0.20 per item. The reason is that the USPS does not need to handle mail sorting and processing. The carrier only transports the postcards and drops them off at every address in your selected areas.

Compared to Standard Mail, EDDM postcards arrive between two to 15 business days. There are no minimum mailing restrictions! But, you cannot mail more than 5,000 mail items at any ZIP code in one day.

Fortunately, all eligible nonprofit organizations can also get discounts on the EDDM postcard mailing cost. Thus, they can contact potential donors and volunteers by spending only a fraction of their marketing budget.

Presorted Vs. Non-Presorted Postcard Postage Rate

Presorted mail is not an actual USPS mailing class. It’s a service that Post Office performs in its mail processing activities. But, if you finish the task instead, you save the USPS tons of time, effort, and money. Thus, it passes on the savings to you by offering a low cost to mail a postcard.

But, you cannot presort if you only mail a few postcards. You need to keep up with the minimum mailing requirements for presorting, bulk mailing, and getting discounted postal charges.

Remember, you need a permit and special software to presort your mailpieces. Thus, you cannot do it in-house and require a direct mail service provider like PostGrid.

Editor’s Note: These prices are for standard-sized postcards. You may need to pay extra on your postcard postage rate if you mail square-shaped or oversized postcards. However, PostGrid’s direct mail API and software can help you mail postcards of any size at industry-best pricing. Therefore, you don’t need to limit your campaign because of the rigid specifications.

The Different Postcard Sizes You Can Use For Your Marketing Campaigns

There are several postcard sizes, but remember that they dictate how much to send a postcard!

Here are the most popular categories of postcard sizes you can use:

Standard Sizes

You can only ship standard-sized postcards if you want to qualify for the default cost of a postcard stamp of $0.44. These sizes include:

  • 3” x 4”
  • 4” x 6”
  • 4.25” x 5.5”
  • 4.25” x 6”

You may ask how much is postage for a 4 x 6 postcard! The answer is simple—$0.44 as it’s the standard postcard stamp cost. It doesn’t matter what the size is; your standard postcards must follow USPS specifications.

If you mail postcards exceeding these sizes, the USPS considers them as letters or parcels. However, you can stick with a 4.25” x 6” postcard because it’s popular, and you can use it to communicate your message to your audience effectively.

Along with a low postcard mailing cost, standard sizes also have other advantages, like:

  • The USPS can process and deliver standard-sized postcards more quickly than others
  • You spend less on printing
  • You can make your postcards look like coupons and urge readers to save them for their next purchase

Jumbo Postcards

They are slightly bigger than standard postcards but offer more space to fit your artwork. Thus, businesses that need to add more content to their postcards use jumbo postcards for their marketing programs. But, you need to pay the standard letter mailing price instead of the postcard postage rate, which amounts to $0.60 per piece.

Below are the most commonly-used jumbo postcard sizes:

  • 5” x 7”
  • 5.5” x 8.5”
  • 6” x 9”
  • 6.5” x 9.5”
  • 6” x 11”

You only need to add 16 cents to the cost of mailing postcards to benefit from larger sizes. They help your postcards stand out from the crowd in your recipients’ mailboxes. Also, these items are more appealing and responsive compared to standard sizes.

Oversized Postcards

At PostGrid, we come across several queries asking what is the postage of a postcard.

While smaller postcards get several benefits from low rates to presorting options, oversized postcards garner massive publicity.

But, only use oversized postcards if your messaging is apt for them. In short, your content should decide which size you must use. Often, brands selling high-ticket items use oversized postcards to make a statement. But, the cost to mail a postcard beyond the jumbo sizes is relatively high.

Here are the popular sizes for oversized postcards:

  • 5.5” x 8.5”
  • 6” x 9”
  • 6.25” x 9”
  • 6” x 11”
  • 11” x 15”

Let us get back to what it costs to mail a postcard—you can expect to pay between $0.58 to $1.16 per item on oversized postcards because they fall under the ‘flats' category.

Also Read: Best Letter Sending Services

How to Mail Postcards Efficiently?

Now that you know how much to mail postcards, you must draft a proper plan to print and ship them correctly. Everything from design to mail tracking can affect your campaign results significantly. Thus, we have compiled the steps below for your reference:

Get Your Artwork Ready

Designing a postcard artwork can be tricky because you don’t have a lot of room. You must select your words wisely and decide which size you need to avail of the standard cost to mail a postcard.

Once you settle on these things, assemble your elements to form an eye-catching layout. Ensure that your target audience can relate to your message and find the postcard helpful.

Print

Printing is the most crucial part of your postcard marketing strategy. You can try saving on the cost of mailing postcards, but your printing should be top-notch.

Your postcard design must look crisp and clear on your paper stock. Choose a heavier paper option that can give your postcards a warm feel. 

Insert an Address

Postcards have a designated area to write the delivery address. Writing it elsewhere can lead to delivery failures and mail returns.

You cannot expect USPS to spend time looking for the address when it delivers nearly 128.9 billion items annually.

Furthermore, you should follow the postal addressing guidelines to bag the standard cost of mailing postcards. Otherwise, you may need to pay a high postcard postage rate and still end up with a return.

Use the correct US address format and standardize it correctly. Also, try using the right fonts and colors to make the addresses visible.

Attach the Stamp

Place the stamp on the upper-right corner of your postcard on the backside. It should be above the recipient’s mailing address. The stamp's price should cover the postcard mailing cost accurately.

Post Your Items

The final step involves lodging your postcards for mailing after assembling your mailpieces and paying the correct postcard postage rate. Though dropping off a few postcards in the mailbox is simple, posting them in bulk would take some effort.

You may need to carry your postcards to the Post Office, a primary requirement for options like Standard Mail. Perhaps, there are designated postal outlets where you must drop off the items. And the cost to send a postcard is deducted from your account automatically.

Sounds simple? If yes, you are good to go! But, the reality is that these steps take months of planning and execution. Also, it is daunting to add tracking mechanisms to in-house mailing campaigns or avail of other advanced features.

Thus, you may not get the desired results even after spending a lot on the cost of buying and mailing postcards.

Now is the right time you use the old saying—Don’t work hard, work smart!

You only need to find ways to streamline your efforts and get the most out of your campaign. Luckily, PostGrid’s direct mail API is readily available for you!

Also Read: Send Postcards Online

How Can PostGrid’s Direct Mail Services Help You Avail of a Low Postcard Mailing Cost?

Assuming that you want to reduce the cost to mail a postcard and save time, automated solutions are the correct answer to your problems.

You no longer need to undertake the above steps and still lag behind your competitors. PostGrid’s direct mail services help you design, print, and distribute postcards speedily and effectively.

You may select any option you want, depending on your preferences. Also, there are no minimum or maximum mailing limits, restricting you from expanding your operations. Our API is scalable and can help you send any number of items anywhere in the US and the world.

Thus, you can stop worrying about what is the cost to mail a 5 x 7 postcard or how to capture response data. PostGrid can do everything on your behalf while you:

  • Get in touch with your targeted audience using segmented lists. PostGrid helps you compile such lists from scratch using several demographics.
  • Avail of more discounts on the cost to mail a postcard by adding Intelligent Mail Barcodes, ZIP+4 codes, etc., using our services.
  • Cross-check your mailing addresses with USPS’s authoritative database to add missing details and check validity. Our solutions offer a 99.99% deliverability guarantee to ensure your postcards arrive at the correct locations.
  • Skip paying an additional postcard mailing cost by printing and mailing items at PostGrid’s all-inclusive rates. Our pricing plans help you can pay-as-you-go and not commit to long-term, unnecessary contracts.
  • Track your postcards in real-time to check progress and follow up on time.
  • Monitor your campaigns and measure the results precisely.
  • Trace respondents using custom QR codes and personalized URLs.

More than 1,000 clients across the country rely on PostGrid’s online print and mail solutions to send offline items. They don’t need to spend time thinking about how much postage for a postcard or the different methods to confirm their customer data. Now, they can focus on their business and enjoy the campaign results.

“A while back, we nearly gave up on direct mail because it wasn’t working for us. We spent thousands of dollars every six months, but our campaigns failed. PostGrid helped us get out of that phase and give snail mail another chance. Now, we mail 1,000 mailpieces weekly, and the results are astonishing. We also conduct triggered campaigns on specific occasions, which helps us get a 20% jump in sales conversions.”

– Marketing Head of one of the brands we worked with!

Conclusion

Postcards are the best marketing tools for businesses from all sectors because they generate the most responses. Also, the postcard mailing cost is relatively low, making them a safe option for promotional campaigns.

Furthermore, PostGrid’s direct mail software and API simplify the process of producing and shipping postcards. You can now easily connect with your audience emotionally and retain more customers by only paying a postcard postage rate.

If you are keen to know more about PostGrid’s solutions to help you avail of a low cost to mail a postcard, click here.

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