I’m a big fan of anything that saves me time, and that goes double
if I also avoid waiting in line. (I tend to end up behind the little
old lady checking out the latest flower stamp designs at the post
office.) I’ve been testing out Stamps.com for the past few months, and
it’s quite handy for printing stamps, and impressive for doing more.
After downloading the desktop software I started using the service
to print regular stamps as I needed them. As the postage in my account
gets depleted, it’s just a button click to add more with a credit card.
You can print single stamps or full sheets of them on a regular printer
and the special stamp labels. Avery also now offers Stamps.com
compatible labels, so you can even get them from your usual office
However, simply printing out stamps is not the exciting part of the
service. While photo or logo stamps (available by custom order) are
cute, it’s the heavier duty shipping features that make Stamps.com an
appealing alternative to a traditional office postage setup for small
Calculate the right postage
I’ve been guilty of just sticking a ton of stamps on a large envelope,
knowing it’s too much postage but wanting to avoid a trip to the P.O.
All you need is a postage scale (a coupon for a free one comes with
your starter kit) and the Stamps.com interface does the rest with a few
Integration with contacts
Postage can also be printed directly on a single envelope or in batches
as part of a mail merge. The software can pull contact information
directly from your contact management system – Outlook, ACT, and others
– and will also print from within other applications. For example if
you’re in QuickBooks and need to mail an invoice, you can print the
envelope with address and postage on it from within QuickBooks.
Package shipping & ecommerce
Stamps.com lets users print shipping labels for packages on plain
sheets of paper, which eliminates the need for special labels
altogether. A very cool feature is integration with popular ecommerce
platforms including eBay, Yahoo, Amazon.com, Google Checkout and PayPal
Shops. The software will retrieve order data from these systems to
print the labels and postage, and then post the shipping details back
to the system so customers know the details of their shipments.
The “regular” stuff
Beyond the special shipping features, it seems that Stamps.com has all
of the usual shipping options covered: Express and Priority mail,
international shipping, COD, certified, registered, and insurance. You
can even order official USPS supplies like Express Mail Envelopes
through the software, and schedule pickups of Express and Priority
If anyone from your small business makes trips to the post office, I
think it’s definitely worth giving Stamps.com a try. And like a lot of
small businesses, this virtual post office is open way past 5pm.
Laura Leites, Managing Editor, Smallbiztechnology.com