USPS Eases Simplified Addressing

WASHINGTON, DC—In a move the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) believes will help businesses grow, particularly small businesses that currently don’t use the mail because they can’t afford it, the agency announced that it is easing the rules on simplified addressing to allow businesses to begin using the format on city delivery routes. The USPS also expects to garner millions of dollars in new revenue from the change.

Simplified addressing enables business mailers to use mail delivery route information, instead of names and exact addresses, to reach target customer groups in specific areas, according to the USPS. It has long been an accepted addressing option on rural routes and for government mailings.

Effective Jan. 2, 2011, simplified addressing was expanded for use on saturation flat-size mailpieces and irregular parcels delivered on city routes. Saturation mail is defined as mail delivered to every address within a geographic area, and flat-size mail includes large envelopes and flyers often used for advertising. Irregular parcels, such as rolls and tubes, are parcels that cannot be processed on automated equipment because of their unique shape.

While the expansion of simplified addressing does not change existing prices or classification standards for Standard Mail flats, the USPS says it can lower costs by reducing mail preparation time and eliminating the need for address list purchases and on-press personalization.

Standard Mail offers a lower price on postage in return for the commercial mailer doing extra preparation work, such as presorting the mailing. It allows mailers to address pieces to “Postal Customer” when complete coverage on any designated delivery route is intended.