As much as technology has revolutionized communication, there are some things that just need to be sent by "snail mail." Whether you're sending a legal notice, a check, or an original document, many types of business correspondence depend on the US Postal Service.
In fact, the USPS processes around 4.93 million pieces of mail every day. That brings up another concern: mail getting lost.
One way to make sure your documents get to their destination is to use USPS Certified Mail. Read on to find out if certified mail can help your business.
Benefits of Using Certified Mail for Business
There are plenty of ways certified mail can benefit customers in the private sector. However, the service is even more useful for business communications. Here are just a few benefits you can enjoy:
1. Proof of Mailing
There are many situations in business in which the date you sent a document is crucial. If you just drop a letter in the mail, you have no proof that you ever sent it, much less sent it on time. You also have no control over when it reaches its destination.
With certified mail, on the other hand, you have black-and-white proof that you upheld your end of the bargain.
2. Track the Location of Your Correspondence
Another great benefit included in certified mail is mail tracking. If your client or business associate is waiting for the document, it helps to tell them where it is and when you expect it to be delivered.
While you can purchase a tracking number for other types of mail, it's an added fee in those cases. Certified mail, on the other hand, includes tracking automatically.
3. Proof of Delivery
Let's say you're sending a legal document to a company or a client. It may not be a situation that warrants a process server, but you need documentation that the person has received it.
In this case, certified mail is a great asset. This service requires a signature on delivery. If the recipient has a post office box, a notice is left in their box and they need to sign for the item at the desk before receiving it. This gives you not only delivery documentation but a personal signature from the recipient acknowledging the item.
As with tracking, you can purchase proof of delivery for other mailing services, but it's an added expense. The delivery documentation is already included in certified mail.
4. Higher Prioritized Delivery
In an official sense, the delivery time for certified mail is the same as either first class or priority mail (whichever option you choose). However, that certified mail sticker does add an extra priority to your item.
This means you can usually expect your item to arrive near the earlier end of the delivery window rather than the later end.
5. Record Retention
We mentioned above how vital it is to have a record of the documents you send, include the send date and delivery date. In some cases, this information is still relevant months or years later.
With certified mail, these records are retained for two years by the USPS. While they also retain records from tracking numbers purchased through other services, they only keep these records for four months.
As an added layer of assistance, you can access these records through the USPS' website as needed. If you need to provide the information for legal purposes, letting the information come from a third party also adds more credibility.
6. Convenience of Labels On Demand
Certified mail used to have the drawback of inconvenience. Businesses would have to take the time to go to the post office during its limited office hours and wait in line to send their documents.
Today, however, there are services available that let you create and print a certified mailing label on your computer. It takes less time than a visit to the post office and you can create your label when it fits into your schedule.
Some of these services also maintain a record of your certified mail. This adds yet another safeguard against losing important information.
7. Extra Protection Against Loss or Theft
We'd be remiss if we didn't mention a fear every mail customer has: their item getting lost. It's happened in the past, and no business owner wants to take that chance.
When your item is marked as certified mail, everyone who handles it knows that it's being tracked. It's an extra layer of accountability that makes them less likely to be careless with your item.
In some cases when people think a piece of mail was lost, it was actually stolen from their mailbox. This type of theft isn't uncommon. However, you eliminate this risk with certified mail. Rather than being placed in a mailbox, anyone can access, the item must be handed to the recipient directly.
8. More Cost-Effective Than Private Shipping Services
You might say, "None of these benefits are exclusive to the USPS' certified mail." It's true that you can get many of the same benefits when you send your documents through a private shipping service.
The problem is that these shipping services are much more expensive. No matter what industry you're in, no business wants to spend more money to get the same service they could get from a cheaper alternative. Especially if you send many documents, these savings add up.
How to Send a Document with Certified Mail
Certified mail is often overlooked, but it holds a long list of benefits that can help any business. When you combine the convenience, the assurance of delivery, and the cost savings, it's a win for all involved.
If you're interested in learning more, read up on USPS certified mail. If you're ready to start using the service, create an account to start your next shipment.