Address Verification

UPS Address Validation

By 25 March 2024May 4th, 2024No Comments
usps api address validation service

UPS Address Validation: How Accurate is it and what are the alternative options

Did you know almost 20% of all addresses provided to websites have a mistake? Incorrect or incomplete address data can lead to delays, failed deliveries, and even lost packages. It could be a massive concern for e-commerce companies.

A simple spelling mistake or wrong street address or zip/postal code can create shipment problems. You must avoid taking this risk with your deliveries and customers.

Leading e-commerce firms know this and employ cutting-edge address verification solutions to reduce unhappy customers. It saves them from customer frustration and a bad reputation.

They understand that these simple mistakes can cause costly problems. Address validation before processing shipments can save money on shipping costs for online businesses.

usps api address validation service

The UPS address validator is one of the most popular solutions for e-commerce and logistics companies.

You can use this service from United Parcel Service (UPS) to make the deliveries smoother and more reliable. This article will help you learn everything about UPS address validation. We will also understand some of the shortcomings of this solution and find a reliable alternative.

Why Should You Consider UPS Address Validation?

Any online business faces the problem of delayed and failed deliveries. Address validation becomes necessary for every shipping process to ensure accurate and timely delivery. You shouldn’t delay your shipment and frustrate your customers!

Up-to-date and accurate address information helps reduce expenses and optimize your operational costs. Address validation also boosts the overall customer experience by reducing delays.

Even e-commerce giants like Amazon and Ali Baba use address validation solutions for their shipments. They are taking additional measures to fight fraudulent activities such as stolen credit cards or fake addresses.

Address verification software solutions ensure legitimate purchases on your platform. You can also reduce the chances of disputes or chargebacks.

Many regions in the world enforce strict shipping regulations for online stores. Any breach of rules directly results in penalties.

You can avoid all these complications by using a solution like a UPS address validator.

💡 Also Read: USPS Address Verification

What are APIs in Address Validation?

APIs can be extremely useful for pinpointing geocoordinates, addresses, or POIs on a map. Primary use cases include;

Digital Vs. Manual Address Validation

Manual validation requires humans to cross-check and validate addresses. Many businesses use this time-consuming and labor-intensive process. However, this approach is always prone to errors and ineffectiveness. Validating large volumes of address data becomes challenging with manual methods. You have to spend day and night to verify huge datasets.

Digital address validation works with an automated process to validate addresses accurately and swiftly. These tools rely on algorithms, databases, and mapping software to cross-check and verify the accuracy of address data. Your e-commerce business can enjoy multiple benefits with automated solutions.

Let us draw a comparison between manual and digital validation;

Accuracy of the Solution
You will get higher accuracy with digital solutions than with a manual approach. Address validation software can use multiple sources to cross-verify and validate addresses. It drastically reduces the chances of errors.
How Fast is the Solution?

Digital verification can complete validation tasks within seconds to provide higher efficiency. In contrast, you will spend more time verifying addresses manually.

How Much Do You Need to Pay?

You will need to make an initial investment to use address validation services. However, it saves tons of money in the long run. Firms minimize labor costs and errors with automated solutions.

Scalability Possibilities

Manual validation always requires you to invest in additional staff to manage workloads. Companies prefer digital solutions to scale their operations according to their needs. They don't need to take other steps to avail scaling.

What are Some Interesting Capabilities of Address Data?

Most organizations only use address data to verify their customer locations. However, there could be more complex and fascinating use cases. These options can help a company improve its operations and decision-making process.

Let us examine some of the most helpful use cases for your company;

International Address Autocomplete

Your company could use an address validation solution to verify the information in your address database. What if you could only accept valid addresses at the entry point by suggesting deliverable postal addresses?

Address autocomplete is a convenient service that provides valid suggestions straight from their first keystroke. However, it would help if you looked for solutions that keep up with USPS and Canada Post Standards.

Address Geocoding

You must know that a postal address can be very vague when you want to navigate. Some address validation tools also provide the latitude and longitude of a postal address. This information is critical for planning delivery routes.

NCOA Verification

Every year, thousands of Americans change their residency. Businesses need help to track their customers. Some address validation tools use the National Change of Address database to keep mailing addresses current.

Address Insights

Many APIs use the power of address intelligence services to provide the demographics of an area. This information can be helpful for marketing and business decisions.

Who Can Use Address Validation Solutions?

Companies from different industries can streamline operations, improve customer experience, and optimize expenditure with address validation tools.

Here are some prominent sectors;

E-Commerce Stores

Online retailers could be the primary users of solutions like UPS address validators. They can ensure accurate deliveries and happier customers who receive shipments on time. It gets easier to identify and rectify shipment addresses. Your business can also expect lower customer complaints after implementing these APIs.

Logistics Companies

These companies depend on accurate address information to deliver packages timely and efficient. They must correct addresses to avoid costly errors or misdeliveries. Using a UPS address validation solution can prevent such consequences. Route planning is much easier when you have accurate address details.

Financial Institutions

Banks and other financial bodies must verify their customer addresses for fraud and Anti Money Laundering (AML) purposes. Address validation solutions can help these organizations to validate their clients' information swiftly. Cybercriminals have prying eyes over financial data and user segmentation.

What is the UPS Address Validator?

The UPS address validator is an API that helps determine the accuracy and deliverability of an address. It's a free API for developers to add UPS address validation to their shipping address forms.

The address validation service by UPS can be helpful in multiple businesses. However, it has several limitations that might limit professionals and companies. For example, the validator skips validating house and unit numbers and doesn't allow database address cleansing.

You must understand its features and limitations before implementing it into your systems. Otherwise, lacking features could create multiple obstacles in your business process.

How to Access UPS Validate Address Services?

You will find multiple address validation tools on UPS' online portal. Businesses must create an account with UPS to start using appropriate services.

The UPS address validator provides real-time address validation during the checkout process. It would help check the addresses at the point of entry to reduce shipping errors for your company.

You can also prefer using the UPS WorldShip software for validating addresses in bulk. This software is a lifesaver for firms with substantial address databases.

UPS validation address software provides different levels of address validation. You get basic and enhanced services for your addresses. The basic one helps you check address accuracy and fix minor errors. In contrast, the enhanced one confirms address completeness and ensures deliverability.

You must reconsider your specific needs to select the appropriate level of validation. The readers will further examine the different types of UPS address validation in this blog.

Domestic Vs. International UPS Address Validation

You will get two types of address validation services if you are using UPS WorldShip;

  • Domestic verification
  • International verification

The domestic address validation service helps correct and standardize US addresses. In contrast, international address validation can validate addresses from over 120 countries. Companies often choose a single solution.

The appropriate service depends on your requirements and business operations. The UPS domestic validation uses the official USPS database for verification and address correction. It assures you of accuracy, completeness, and correct formatting of addresses.

One can also avoid delays or additional fees due to invalid postal addresses.

The UPS international address validation service uses multiple databases and algorithms to work. It can verify and standardize addresses from over 120 countries. You can ensure your postal address is complete, accurate, and formatted according to the respective nation.

This solution is perfect when you are operating globally in multiple countries. Your employees will be fine with formatting the addresses according to regional standards.

How Does UPS Validate Addresses?

The UPS-validated address solutions can integrate well with any e-commerce website or point-of-sale application. You can validate address details whenever your customer provides information to you.

Your employees can also identify address errors before sending packages for delivery. The installation process of the UPS address validator is relatively simple. Its integration capabilities allow developers to include address validation capabilities in your website or application.

You can follow these steps to start using UPS validation address services without headaches;

Step 1: Integrate UPS Address Validator into Your System

First, your developers will need to sign up to get access. You will get an API key for your developers to integrate the UPS address validator into your software system.

Step 2: Include Addresses in Your Delivery System

Your employees or customers can enter their postal addresses after you connect the UPS address validator API. The system will send a verification request to the UPS API to ensure the accuracy and relevancy of the information.

Step 3: The UPS Address Validation Process Will Do Its Job

The UPS address validator API compares the address against its database. You will get a response after the validation process. The customers or employees can know if the address is valid or invalid.

Step 4: Provide Validation Results

You can show the saved details to the customer after the validation process. They will also know that the address provided is deliverable. In some situations, the postal address could be correct but may not be residential in some cases.

It is always a good idea to help the customers to acknowledge that their address is residential or business.

💡 Also Read: UPS Address Verification

Problems with UPS Address Validator Principle

United Parcel Service is a shipping carrier. It's no surprise the validator aims to help their package delivery system. UPS workers handle the parcel from initial receipt to the recipient's doorstep.

The validator API focuses on getting appropriate street or “close enough” information to the delivery location. You cannot trust the solution for its accuracy and completeness.

The “close enough” principle provides vague information about the address. UPS doesn't include granular data and hard-to-maintain address elements. They must consider the number of units, suites, buildings, apartments, and houses.

It simplifies the maintenance of the code base. However, it makes it harder for drivers to validate granular elements. Companies often ship the items to addresses that don't exist. You could risk higher chances of lost, returned, or delayed packages.

UPS is not the only company that follows the “close enough” principle. FedEx, Google Maps, and Bing Maps also ignore the granular elements of the address.

They aim to reduce their code complexity and decrease errors in the data entry. All these services leave the scope of mistakes to get the correct address.

Terms of Service Limitations with the UPS Address Validator

Let's start with what the UPS address validator allows you to do.

The company only allows users to use their address validation services to ship packages with their delivery service. Any other innovative use case is a violation of their terms of service.

It is an extreme limitation compared to other address validation APIs. These are some examples of policy violations;

  • Checking address deliverability for mail and packages for other postal carriers.
  • Standardizing, cleansing, and validating your address database.
  • Validating your customers' billing addresses.
  • Data analytics with user address records.
  • Anything use case unrelated to shipping packages with UPS.

There are minimal things you can do with UPS address validation solutions. You will be fine if you deliver your mail or shipments with UPS. However, companies have more use cases for address validation. It gets into the dilemma of reconsidering your choices.

How Fast is UPS Address Validation?

The UPS address validator is not famous for its validation speed. It can take up to 700ms per single address address lookup. In contrast, some solutions can do the same with a 100ms response time.

You cannot run a batch list if you integrate the tool into your system. You can only check one shipping address at a time. This experience may not be suitable for business users with heavy requirements.

The implementation will take a week for a skilled developer. You will need months without expert developers on your team. One can instead look for other solutions that take less time to implement.

Metadata You Get from the UPS Address Validator

You will get three points of address details if you are using the UPS address validation solution:

  • Valid or invalid.
  • Confirmation if the address is present in their database.
  • Suggestions for +4 ZIP codes.

This information is sufficient if you only want to deliver your packages. However, a more comprehensive solution is necessary to address data intelligence.

It becomes easier to make critical business decisions with;

  • Geocode
  • Time zone
  • RDI
  • Congressional district
  • FIPS code
  • Census information

The API Doesn't Work Well with Building, Suite, and Apartment Numbers

Some regions in the United States have dense populations despite the nation's massive area. Around 39 million Americans live in apartments. We must also consider secondary addresses like departments, office suites, units, and rooms.

Address validation UPS won't tell you about these apartments or their unit numbers. Their API doesn't validate the building number or secondary number. There are chances of errors even if your physical address is accurate.

UPS validation address solution will need to include these details in the verification process. We understand you don't want your decisions based on incorrect or incomplete data.

Imagine you deliver a $1000 product to an incorrect apartment building or unit. The delivery driver will either return the package or make a wrong delivery.

Common Errors to Avoid While Using UPS Address Validation

Even the basic functionalities could be better. You must be aware of the common errors that can occur with valid address UPS.

Ignoring these errors can lead to delayed or undeliverable shipments. UPS address validator could be better for advanced use cases. You must regularly update your address database to avoid dissatisfied customers and lost revenue.

Best Practices to UPS Validate Address

Developers and employees can use several tips to improve their validation success with the UPS address validator;

  • Ensure the correctness and consistency of your addresses.
  • Regularly update and maintain your address database.
  • Provide extra sections for suite numbers or apartments.

You can also try using alternative address validation solutions. They can fix errors in your address data to streamline your delivery operations. Cross-checking the data with other sources will improve the accuracy level.

Many firms use this method to find discrepancies in their address data before dispatching shipments.

Advantages of UPS Address Validation for E-Commerce Businesses

Implementing the validator into your e-commerce application or website will streamline the buying experience. Companies must use these tools to automate their processes and reduce manual work.

The following are some notable advantages of using address validation UPS for your company;

  • You can avoid data entry errors by customers. Rectifying spelling mistakes is possible when you validate the address UPS. It will deliver your shipments to customers safely without delays. Faster deliveries are everything for e-commerce businesses.
  • The address validation service API can verify international addresses. Your American business can make swift and accurate deliveries to your global customers. It will save you from the trouble of formatting addresses according to different postal standards.
  • Your customer support team can perform better by quickly looking up and confirming addresses. They can even mitigate the risk of angry customers from misplaced packages.
  • The integration of the UPS address validator can automate the shipping process. You won't need to make further edits to the address data.

Future Trends in Address Validation for E-Commerce

The true potential of address validation solutions will see significant advancements with artificial intelligence and machine learning. These technologies will further boost the accuracy levels and reduce delivery errors.

Businesses will achieve significant cost savings in their shipping operations. Address validation solutions are already considering blockchain technology for better security and decentralization. Companies can ensure higher shipping information accuracy and avoid fraud. The decentralized infrastructure will eliminate unauthorized access and ensure transparency.

Your company also needs to consider the environmental impact of its shipping operations. These days everyone is talking about being carbon neutral and supportive to our planet. It will be a future trend to make companies environmentally friendly with address validation solutions.

Address validation software is necessary to optimize the routes and reduce carbon footprint. You can also save on fuel and time to deliver shipments.

Geolocation and geocoding API technologies are also gaining popularity among address validation tools.

Their integrations can verify addresses with geographic coordinates. It provides a more precise and efficient method of confirming addresses. Conventional postal addresses could be complex and ambiguous for professionals and businesses.

Why is PostGrid Address Verification API Better than UPS Address Validation?

A traditional API like the UPS address validator is full of limitations and constraints. You cannot execute advanced use cases with this solution. A reliable address verification API is necessary to autocomplete, verify, validate, and standardize your addresses according to postal standards.

PostGrid address validation API is the ideal solution for e-commerce and logistics companies to optimize their operations. It can work with multiple postal carriers to give the most accurate results.

Real-Time Address Validation Has Never Been This Easy

PostGrid’s API can verify and standardize hundreds of addresses within seconds. You can always ensure that no invalid postal address enters your database.

You Get Certifications from CASS and SERP

PostGrid's API gets certification from USPS and Canada Post to ensure the highest accuracy in the verification process. It cross-verifies your queries against the official database of credible sources.

A Highly Scalable and Integrable API

The API can adapt to any volume of address data for smoother implementation. You can even run bulk verification jobs by uploading a CSV file. We also ensure the smoothest integration of our API with your existing software solutions. There's no need to write a single line of code for this integration.

Geocoding Capabilities

You won't get these advanced capabilities with UPS address validation tools. PostGrid lets you obtain latitude and longitude information for postal addresses. This information gives you a precise idea about its location and helps you plan delivery routes.

Sign up now to move beyond UPS address validation.

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