QR Code on Return Labels

On May 3, 2019 the Postal Service has updated the Merchandise Return Application (MRA) and the Web Tools API to provide consumers the ability to print a Quick Response (QR) code on return labels.

How to Create an EDDM Bulk Mailing

The USPS has released a handy fact sheet on creating Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM) bulk mailings.

Picture Permit Lets You Put Logo In Mail Indicia

The Postal Service has updated its requirements for the Picture Permit Indicia (PPI), which provides organizations the opportunity to include their corporate logo, brand images, or trademarks in the permit indicia space of First-Class Mail® automation letters and postcards, and all USPS Marketing Mail™ letters.

NEW PUB 199: Intelligent Mail Package Barcode Guide

The USPS has released an updated Publication 199: Intelligent Mail Package Barcode (IMpb) Implementation Guide for Confirmation Services and Electronic Verification System (eVS)Mailers.

CBD Oil Shipping Regulations Announced

The USPS has released Cannabidiol (CBD) shipping regulations.

Informed Visibility API Developer Toolkit

The Developer Toolkit provides information about using the Informed Visibility® Mail Tracking & Reporting (IV®-MTR) Application Programming Interface (API). The API enables the mailing industry to integrate mobile and web-based applications with near real-time IV-MTR data through a lightweight data exchange.

New Informed Visibility Mail Tracking & Reporting User Guide

This guide provides information about the United States Postal Service (USPS) Informed Visibility Mail Tracking & Reporting (IV-MTR) application, which allows mailers to track letter and flat containers, handling units (trays, tubs, and sacks), bundles, and pieces.

INFORMED VISIBILITY 2019: Provisioning Mail Quality Data

With the Informed Visibility Mail Tracking & Reporting (IV-MTR) application (, mailers are able to get mail tracking data for letter and flat containers, handling units (trays, tubs, and sacks), bundles, and pieces.

Informed Delivery Mailer Onboarding Guide

This comprehensive technical specification outlines the steps and criteria for submitting a serialized Informed Delivery interactive campaign via PostalOne! Electronic Documentation (eDocs).

Weather, Terrain Affect USPS Productivity OIG Finds

A new study from the OIG found that the most important external determinant of postal productivity is weather. Other factors include regional differences in real wages and terrain. The research identifies areas where productivity is much higher or lower than would be expected given their weather, cost of living, and ruggedness — giving postal managers a chance to address problem areas.

Charter For The Mailers’ Technical Advisory Committee

Here is the MTAC Charter updated March 2019.

Secure Destruction Mail Service – How it Works!

Secure Destruction Mail Service is available for First Class letter and flat mail only. First Class Mail, by postal definition, is a protected class of mail because it contains personal identifiable information that is subject to federal and state privacy protection laws.

Publication 199 Intelligent Mail Package Barcode (IMpb) Implementation Guide

The Implementation Guide to Intelligent Mail Package Barcode(IMpb)for Confirmation Services and Electronic Verification System (eVS )Mailers provides technical guidance for the implementation of the Intelligent Mail package barcode (IMpb )and file formats.These rules enable customers to meet IMpb requirements for packages and shipments with Extra Services.

New Mail.dat Technical Specifications

The USPS has released new Mail.dat Specifications on June 9, 2019.

New Enterprise Payment User Guide

The first edition of the Enterprise Payment (EPS) User Guide has been released, a must have document for mailers who want to automate postage payment. EPS provides customers enhanced security features, centralized balance and account management online, ability to pay for all products and services with one account, and convenient payment options.

New Address Information System (AIS) Products Technical Guide

The Address Information System (AIS) Products Technical Guide contains documentation on all AIS products, including Residential Delivery Indicator (RDI), Z4Change, ZIPMove, Zip+4, Five-Digit Zip Product, eLOT, Carrier Route Product, City State Product, and Delivery Statistics Product.

USPS 2019 Mailing Promotions Final Calendar Released

Here is the final calendar of all 2019 postal promotions mailers can take advantage of to get discounted postage rates

New Pub 199: Intelligent Mail Package Barcode (IMpb) Implementation Guide

The USPS released Publication 199 to provide technical guidance for the implementation of the Intelligent Mail package barcode (IMpb) and file formats for Confirmation Services and Electronic Verification System (eVS) Mailers.

Postal Regulatory Commission 2018 Annual Report

The Postal Regulatory Commission Fiscal Year 2018 Annual Report to the President and Congress. The report provides a summary of the main activities undertaken by the Commission throughout the year.

USPS 2018 Annual Compliance Report

The United States Postal Service hereby submits its Fiscal Year 2018 Annual Compliance Report (ACR or Report). The Report is provided pursuant to 39 U.S.C. Section 3652, which requires the Postal Service to file with the Postal Regulatory Commission, within 90 days after the end of each fiscal year (FY), a variety of data on costs, revenues, rates, and quality of service, in order to “demonstrate that all products during such year complied with all applicable requirements” of title 39.

Eight Principles For Successful Direct Marketing

Freedom Graphics made a USPS presentation that identifies 8 principles for successful direct marketing from having a clear objective to evaluating success by life time value. Here is the powerpoint presentation

Updated: Guide to Move Update

The USPS has issued an updated Guide to Move Update. The Move Update standard is a means of reducing the number of mailpieces in a mailing that require forwarding or return by the periodic matching of a mailer’s address records with change-of-address orders received and maintained by the Postal Service.

USPS Mailpiece Design Approval Knowledge Base

The Postal Service has launched a Mailpiece Design Approval Knowledge Base, to provide consistent and universal evaluations of mailpieces entered through Business Mail Entry Units (BMEUs).

Millenials & The Mail: OIG Report Shows Promise

The OIG found that while Millennials check their mail less frequently than older generations, their overall satisfaction with the Postal Service is similar to older age cohorts. They generally want more convenience and customization, suggesting that USPS provide more self service, advance knowledge of mail and parcel deliveries, and customer loyalty and benefits programs.

Using Mail To Build Brands

The OIG reports ads designed to elicit an emotional response or that used metaphorical symbols of the brand’s value were generally more effective for branding than ads that described a product’s function. Two previous studies by the OIG pointed to physical advertising’s strength in leaving a lasting impression and its ability to make an emotional connection with consumers. This time, the OIG extended its research to examine how physical advertising compares with digital advertising for branding purposes.

USPS Enterprise Payment System Account Creation Fact Sheet

The new Enterprise Payment System (EPS) replaces the current product-centric payment with a centralized account processing system enabling customers to pay and manage their service online using a single account.

Enterprise Analytics PDF Report At MTAC

The USPS made a presentation on Enterprise Analytics at MTAC’s June meeting, detailing a plethora of mailing issues and solutions including Informed Visibility, CASS/MASS, change of address, and more.

2017 Household Diary Study Released With Good, Bad News

The new 2017 Household Diary Study was released, detailing the use of mail and packages by American consumers.

GAO Releases Review Of USPS Capital Spending Processes

This GAO report: (1) describes USPS’s projected capital spending over the next 10 years and (2) assesses whether USPS’s processes support its ability to address uncertainties and risks that affect its capital spending.

Transactional Mail Today & Tomorrow: New OIG Report

From the OIG: This paper examines the recent history of First-Class transactional mail sent and received by households.

Creating An Enterprise Payment System Account

The USPS has released updated information on creating an Enterprise Payment System (EPS) account. EPS allows customers to pay for Postal products and services through a single account, called the Enterprise Payment Account (EPA).

USPS Guides To Informed Visibility Mail Tracking & Reporting

The USPS released two important guides for Informed Visibility Mail Tracking & Reporting.

PostalOne! Contingency Plan: When You Can’t Submit Documents Electronically

The PostalOne! External Contingency Plan is a detailed description of what to do in the event that a system outage prevents you from submitting documentation electronically.

PRC Releases 2017 Annual Report; Outlines Ratesetting Changes

The Postal Regulatory Commission issued its 2017 Annual Report to the President and Congress which includes commentary on its proposed changes to the postage rate-setting system.

Address Quality Census Measurement and Assessment Process (AQCMAP) Fact Sheet

Fact sheet on the USPS’ Move Update Census-based approach.

Move Update – Green and Secure Final Rule

The USPS has implemented a new method for measuring compliance for meeting the Move Update requirement using a Census based approach. USPS uses scans from Mail Processing Equipment to confirm that addresses for First-Class and USPS Marketing Mail letters and flats are updated to include change-of-addresses (COA) within 95 days of the mailing date.

PRC Financial Analysis Of USPS Released

The Postal Regulatory Commission has released its financial anaylsis of USPS for Fiscal Year 2017.

Understanding Postal Governance

In 2016 the OIG released an excellent report on the Board of Governors:
“The concerns about the Postal Service’s governance model and the potential confirmation of a new slate of governors make this an opportune time to explore the history of the Board, its rationale, and barriers to effective operation. A close reading of this history sheds important light on the Board’s role and the challenges the Board has faced in the past.

Riding the Returns Wave: Reverse Logistics and the USPS

From the OIG: Reverse logistics is not just forward logistics backwards; it is more complex and more expensive. Yet it is becoming more prominent, since return rates for ecommerce purchases are three times higher than for traditional physical retail. The Postal Service handled 148 million return packages in FY 2016, but its share of the returns market is smaller than its share of the outbound parcel market, indicating a potential opportunity for growth.

OIG Report: The Future Of Correspondence Mail

Although the decline of First-Class Mail volume rightfully gets a lot of attention, it is important to understand the underlying trends affecting its key segments, including correspondence mail.

2018 Changes to Postage Payment: USPS Enterprise Payment

by Bob Schimek, Senior Director of Postal Affairs, Quadient and Industry Vice Chair, Mailers Technical Advisory Committee

Guide to USPS Acronyms and Abbreviations

New mailers sometimes have a challenging time learning Postal acronyms. This reference guide provides a listing of common postal abbreviations & acronyms and can be shared with customers …

Autonomous Mobile Robots and the Postal Service

Autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) use sensors and navigation technologies to transport goods around an open space without a human controlling them. Different forms of autonomous robots have been used in postal sorting centers for years, to move containers and pallets between sorting machines.

OIG: Positive Public Perception of Mail Delivery Robots

A large majority of Americans believe delivery robots will be in use within the next five years. Many more say they like delivery robot concepts than dislike them — particularly if the robot will help mail carriers.

Secure Destruction: A Primer For Mailers

Secure Destruction eliminates UAA Return to Sender mail at the USPS facility. Secure Destruction was created in response to mailers asking to reduce handling costs for “Return to Sender” mail with Privacy Protected Information (PPI). It applies only to letter-sized First-Class Mail and is destruction is performed by USPS employees in postal facilities.

PRC Issues 2017 Annual Compliance Determination: Progress and Challenges

The Postal Regulatory Commission issued its Annual Compliance Determination (ACD), a mandated assessment of the U.S. Postal Service’s compliance with pricing and service performance requirements in fiscal year 2017 (FY 2017).

“Mail Anywhere” Program Customer Participation Guide

The Postal Service has launched the new “Mail Anywhere” service that allows a customer to use the same permit at every mailing location across the country

How USPS Adapts To Digital World

Gary Reblin, the USPS Vice President of Product Innovation, recently gave a presentation on postal strategy in the digital world entitled “Adapting to a Changing Marketplace”.

New Informed Visibility Mail Tracking Guide

This updated guide provides information about the United States Postal Service (USPS) Informed Visibility Mail Tracking & Reporting (IV-MTR) application, which allows mailers to track letter and flat containers, handling units (trays, tubs, and sacks), bundles, and pieces.

ADDRESS SERVICE REQUESTED: New USPS Guide To Ancillary Endorsements

Ancillary service endorsements are used by mailers to request an addressee’s new address and to provide the USPS with instructions on how to handle undeliverable-as-addressed pieces.

INFORMED DELIVERY GUIDE: How To Submit Your Ad For Emails

This comprehensive technical specification outlines the steps and criteria for submitting an Informed Delivery interactive campaign through the Mail.dat file format via PostalOne Electronic Documentation (eDocs).

OIG Report On Certified Mail

To continue to provide this highly valued and trusted service in an affordable and attractive way to Postal Service customers, Certified Mail could be modernized through various technological advancements.

USPS Enterprise Payment Fact Sheet & Documentation

The Postal Service has released a fact sheet about using its Enterprise Payment System, which lets mailers pay for multiple permit accounts from one centralized account.

USPS Pub 199: Implementation Guide to Intelligent Mail Package Barcode (IMpb)

The Implementation Guide to Intelligent Mail Package Barcode (IMpb) for Confirmation Services and Electronic Verification System (eVS) Mailers provides technical guidance for the implementation of the Intelligent Mail package barcode (IMpb) and file formats.

How To Let Others See Your IV Mail Tracking

The USPS has released a form that allows a Delegating Company (i.e., Mailer ID (MID) Owner) to provide authorization for delegation of mail tracking visibility to a Receiving Company within the IV Mail Tracking & Reporting application.

New USPS IV Mail Tracking & Reporting User Guide

This guide provides information about United States Postal Service (USPS) mail tracking through Informed Visibility (IV), which allows mailers to track letter and flat containers, handling units (trays, tubs, and sacks), bundles, and pieces. IV does not provide mail tracking data on packages, to include associated containers, handling units, and bundles.

Mail Collection Box Management Reviewed By OIG

Mail collection boxes are used primarily to collect mail from customers. Nationwide, there were about 153,000 collection boxes at the end of fiscal year (FY) 2016; however, the U.S. Postal Service has been removing underused boxes, with about 14,000 boxes removed over the past five years.

International Mail Terminal Dues Report By GAO

The Government Accounting Office (GAO) issued a public version of its August 2017 report on International Mail and Terminal Dues. Information on international revenues, costs, and volumes for international mail that USPS has deemed proprietary has been omitted from this report.

MTAC User Group Guidelines

The Postal Service has released guidelines for the management of MTAC (Mailers’ Technical Advisory Committee) user groups.


The Postal Service has released a PDF on the basic design elements for flats.

Address Element Correction (AEC) User Guide, Order Form Released

The Postal Service has released its AEC and AEC II Address Element Correction USER GUIDE for the quality process developed by the USPS with industry support.

Secured Destruction Program Guidelines Released

The USPS has released its Secure Destruction guidelines. As part of its going efforts to improve service and enhance the sustainability of the mail, the United States Postal Service (USPS) has developed a new Secure Destruction (SD) Service option. Secure Destruction is an opt-in mail service offered by the Postal Service under its USPS BlueEarth brand of sustainable customer programs.

New USPS Enterprise Payment System Lets Mailers Pay From Centralized System

The U.S. Postal Service is upgrading its payment architecture for enterprise and business customers. The new Enterprise Payment System (EPS) will replace the current product-centered payment with a centralized account management system that provides enhanced security features, centralized balance and account management, and a self-service customer experience.


The Postal Service has released USPS Publication 6850, Streamlined Mail Acceptance for Letters and Flats, which contains the policies and processes for the verification of eligible business mailings using tools provided by Intelligent Mail Full-Service, eInduction, and Seamless Acceptance.

Latest Mail Household Diary Study Released

The 2016 HOUSEHOLD DIARY STUDY from the United States Postal Service has been released.

Ten Common Mailpiece Design Mistakes

The Postal Service has identified the ten most common mistakes they encounter with mailpiece design — and has published a handy document on how to improve your mail.

2017 Postal Promotions Technical Information

The USPS released a handy chart detailing technical requirements for the 2017 postal promotions.

Informed Visibility User Guide Released

This guide provides information about United States Postal Service (USPS) mail tracking through Informed Visibility (IV), which allows mailers to track letter and flat containers, handling units (trays, tubs, and sacks), bundles, and pieces.

eInduction Penalty Assessment Worksheet

The electronic Induction (eInduction) process streamlines the preparation and induction (how and where the mail physically enters the Postal Service mailstream) of drop shipments and expedited plant load mailings.

IV Mail Tracking Roadmap for 2017 Released

The Postal Service released time frames for Informed Visibility mail tracking in 2017.

Informed Visibility PDF: The Power of Information

A detailed PDF of Informed Visibility shows the power of information available to mailers to track their mail and delivery performance.

Address Change Service (ACS) Information Guide

Many mailers are unaware of Address Change Service and ancillary endorsement options that help comply with Move Update standards, detailed in this handy ACS Information Guide.

Postal Payment & Acceptance MTAC Presentation

Here is Pritha Mehra’s MTAC presentation on Postal Payment, Acceptance and Education.

USPS White Paper: Getting Direct With Direct Mail

As marketers continue to explore methods of advertising – social, search, email – it’s now possible to reach consumers anytime, anywhere.

USPS Thinking Inside & Outside The Parcel Box

The OIG identifies eight innovation opportunities for the parcel box, providing use cases and an explanation of how the Postal Service has used the innovation in the past.

Shipping Process Strongly Influences Customer Loyalty

The major reasons a customer makes a repeat online purchase are linked to logistics and transport such as free shipping, return options, delivery times and shipping updates. There is an undeniable link between your shipping process and your customer’s satisfaction, detailed in new report.

New Mail.dat Specs From USPS

The Postal Service released the new Mail.dat Technical Specifications publication effective March 17, 2017. The 375-page document details steps for exchanging electronic data with the PostalOne! system using the Mail.dat file format.

USPS Files Move Update Assessment Process

The Postal Service’s Address Quality Method and Assessment Process notice has been filed in the Federal Register. The notice lays out how the USPS will quantify address quality and assess penalties for mailers.

How Other Nation’s Price Mail

The USPS Office of Inspector General found that in five countries price regulation has recently become more flexible in two ways – through a reduction of scope of products that fall under price regulation or allowance of higher price increases on regulated products.

How Aflac Improved Address Quality

Aflac’s Address Standardization Project was initiated to find a new address validation software system to streamline processes, continue the company’s record of being USPS compliant, retain current postage discounts, and to mitigate any potential fines due to poor address quality.

Direct Mail Starter Promotion Details Released

The 2017 Direct Mail Starter Promotion program requirements have been released by the USPS.

USPS Emerging Technology Promotion Reqs Released

The USPS has released requirements for its 2017 Emerging And Advanced Technology promotion that gives postal discounts for participants.

Informed Visibility Data Dictionary Available

The USPS released its Informed Visibility Data Dictionary describes the data attributes available in the external-facing Informed Visibility®(IV®) Mail Tracking & Reporting system.

Customize Your Postal Permit Indicia

USPS Picture Permit Indicia (PPI) is an updated USPS offering that provides organizations with the opportunity to creatively add value to their mailpiece.

A New Approach in Delivering Corporate Services

BY JOE FREEMAN, Operations Specialist, Canon Business Process Services — (This article appeared in the Official Mail Guide, Fall 2016 – Winter 2017 Edition.) How a healthcare industry leader tapped used mail management services designed to help support the organization’s commitment to quality.

Best Practices For Improving Mailing Address Quality

An MTAC work group has released an outstanding 37-page guide to best practices for address quality to reduce Undeliverable-as-Addressed (UAA) mail.

Mailers Can Use Street Address Of Their PO Box As Mailing Address

The United States Postal Service offers customers the option of using a PBSA as an equivalent of the customer’s traditional P.O. Box-style address. The customer’s mailing address may be either a PBSA, which is street-style address for the Post Office where their P.O. Box is located, or the traditional P.O. Box-style address.

USPS Manifest Mailing Guide Released

The Postal Service has released an updated Pub 401 Guide To The Manifest Mailing System. Manifest mailing is an automated system that allows a mailer to document postage and fees for all pieces in a mailing paid via permit imprint indicia.

International Mail Security Report By OIG

The Inspector General issued the Inbound International Mail Operations report, which much of the critical information blacked-out (redacted).

GPO Releases New Style Manual

The U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO) has issued the 31st edition of the GPO Style Manual, the first update since 2008 and the latest edition since it was first published in 1894.

USPS Address Information System Products Guide Released

The Address Information System (AIS) Products Technical Guide is a consolidated user guide containing documentation on all AIS products.

UPDATE: Informed Visibility For Your Mail In 2017

The USPS has released updated information on Informed Visibility. The Postal Service is introducing Informed Visibility® (IV®), which provides the mailing industry with powerful insight into the USPS mailstream.

VIDEO: Amazon First Drone Delivery

Amazon successfully completed its first autonomous drone delivery in Cambridge, England.

SUPER COOL: Interactive Mail Delivery Standards Map

The Postal Service has introduced a dynamic delivery services map that lets you identify 3-Digit ZIP and city and plug in originating or destinating service. The result: a color-coded map that shows you what the service standard is.

Share Mail Product Info Released

The Postal Service has released information on Share Mail, a postal product that lets users send Single-Piece First-Class Mail without affixing a stamp.

Cost Of Downtime In Print and Mail Operations

Bell and Howell Releases Report on Cost of Downtime in Print and Mail Operations; Addresses downtime, preventative maintenance, data protection and recovery.

Informed Visibility Data Dictionary Update Released

The USPS released an updated Informed Visibility Mail Tracking & Reporting External Facing Data Dictionary.

Share Mail aka Alternate Postage

The Postal Service has released information on Share Mail, a postal product that lets users send Single-Piece First-Class Mail without affixing a stamp.

USPS Doing Better Than Projected

In 2011 the Postal Service released projections on future mail volumes and revenue. The projections showed a troubled picture of the USPS amid declining mail volumes, internet competition, and the recession. They turned out to be wrong.

OIG Report On Use Of Private Contractor Studies

The Office of the Inspector General released a report on USPS use of private contractor studies, stating the Post was unable to produce 30 of the 97 studies it asked to see

Mail Use Study Reveals USPS’s Shifting Role

The Lexington Institute analyzed the recent USPS Household Diary Study and came to some interesting conclusions

Public Perception Of Drone Delivery Mixed

The Inspector General examines public perception of drone delivery

IMpb January 2017 Compliance InfoSheet

USPS Webinar PDFs on IMpb Compliance

Intelligent Mail Options For Smaller Mailers

USPS Guide to Intelligent Mail services for small mail operations

VIDEO: How Mail & Packages Are Processed By USPS

A great video that shows how mail is processed by the Postal Service.

Mail Household Diary: Mail Use & Attitudes In FY 2015

The USPS has released its annual Mail Household Study which details what Americans receive in the mail and how they use mail in 2015.

OIG Releases Report On Mail Processing Operations

Inspector General’s Continuous Improvement of Mail Processing Operations

How Technology Can Make Mail Irresistible

USPS Chief Marketing Officer On The Secrets Of Irresistible Mail

PRC Releases 2017-2022 Strategic Plan

Postal Regulatory Commission identifies key areas to manage as postal regulator.

Mail An E-Mail Address

The Postal Service will soon be able to deliver mail that just has an email address.

Best Of USPS’s Omni-Channel Campaign

Postal Service’s CMO details effective omni-channel campaign during holiday season.

JLS Tests Neopost’s IS-6000 Mailing System

Legendary lettershop uses latest postage meter mailing system and loves the results.

Using Informed Delivery To Add Value To Mail

One of the nation’s largest mail printers shows how Informed Visibility brings control.

Direct Meets Digital: From Evolution to Revolution

Lettershop shows how digital is transforming the direct mail business.

How Lithographic Communications Cleans Data

Printer needs a way to keep customer data clean. Finds solution.

New Inserters Bring Dynamic Results for Mailer

High volume print-mail service bureau finds solution for manufacturing documents.

The Future Of Ad Mail

The OIG offers five scenarios on the future of advertising mail in a special report.