It took a long time for the price of a postage stamp to break the 50 cent barrier, but once it did in January 2018, that number didn’t last long. In just over a year, a new 2019 postage rate chart went into effect.
How much is a postage stamp going to set you back in 2019? Well, it’s still a round number, with a 5-cent increase: a first-class letter now costs 55 cents to mail. How much is a book of stamps, you ask? A book of 20 Forever stamps for standard 1 oz. First Class letters will cost $11.00.
The new USPS rates went into effect on January 27. Here’s what you need to know about the rate changes, as well as the best way for direct mail marketers to cut costs despite the increase.
Overview of Postage Rates 2019
The nickel increase was the largest single-price rise to a postage stamp in United States history (although the 1991 4-cent increase saw a larger percentage jump when the stamp went from 25 to 29 cents). Nonetheless, this year the cost of mailing a single letter will go up by 10%. That’s a major difference. Thankfully, that’s not the cost increase for marketing or non-profit mail. Price changes have gone into effect across the board. You can check out a more detailed view of the entire 2019 postage rate chart here and the full price list here. As a direct mail marketer, what you are no doubt most interested in is how the rate increases affect bulk, commercial and marketing mail.
A Closer Look at Postage Rates 2019 and Marketing Mail
The Increase Is Smaller for Metered Mail
In contrast to the five-cent increase for the first-class stamp, metered mail has gone up only 3-cents, from 47 to 50 cents. For any businesses not using metered mail, now is a better time than ever to make the switch.
Presorted Standard Mail Sees the Smallest Increase of All
For those using commercial mail, the price increase does not seem too bad, with a 1-cent increase for Standard and SCF Standard Pre-Sorted letters, and no change for First Class Presorted. However, the picture is always more complex; a whole host of factors, including sorting and prices for individual types of mailings, can vary and impact overall cost.
Beat the Increases with Better Sorting
For many mail marketers, the biggest changes in costs are not so much about increases in the actual rates as they are about changes concerning how the USPS charges for sorting. The post office has begun cracking down on discounts it had previously been giving, including making STC regulations tougher and enforcing existing regulations more closely.
- January 2019 saw the largest increase in the price of a first-class stamp
- The prices now are 55 cents for a postage stamp and $11.00 for a book of twenty stamps.
- Metered Mail changes slightly with a small increase, and Pre-Sorted Mail has the smallest increase.
- Possible increased business costs will depend highly on sorting discounts.
Are You Taking Full Advantage of Commingling?
Commingling can help you to save money on your direct marketing campaign despite the postage rates 2019 increase. There are a whole host of benefits that commingling can provide your business. Curious to learn more about how exactly commingling works? We’re always happy to answer questions about how we can use this powerful tool to cut costs on your marketing budget. Give Ballantine a call at 973-305-1500 to learn how you can keep mailing costs down.
I'm the Director of Digital Services and Partner at Ballantine, a family-owned and operated direct mail & digital marketing company based in New Jersey. and started in 1966 by my great uncle!