We just entered a new decade, and many industries in the 21st century have seen great disruption while other sectors have been more stable and resistant to change. The USPS started off traditionally with a mailman who would carry mail by foot or on a horse. And although the means of mail transportation has changed over the years, paper mail still remains paper mail.
Even still, the idea of being able to drop a letter, parcel, or package into a PO Box somewhere – anywhere – and have it arrive at its ultimate destination (without spending a mountain of money on shipping) is something that we all have come to take a little bit for granted.
No, the USPS isn’t perfect. But it has been doing an amazing job ever since it was started generations ago – and is still a huge part of our day-to-day lives.
Yes, the volume of mail people exchange has dropped dramatically, but there are certain pieces of mail that cannot be delivered in any other way in this digitally centered day and age.
Which raises the question: Do you really need a P.O Box in 2020? Are there are any better alternatives available?
This is a question that you are really going to have to mull over, particularly if you are a business owner or entrepreneur these days. The odds are still pretty good that you are getting a decent amount of mail – and sending or receiving important business documents, packages, and parcels through the mail – which requires you to have some sort of mailbox solutions in place.
Let’s start off with the first question on the importance of maintaining a P.O Box. To answer that, you need to consider first what is easily replaceable (and has been replaced) by e-mail, what could potentially be replaced using a Virtual Mailbox, and of course what still needs to come in the old fashioned way.
It goes without saying that the majority of business correspondence is done now via e-mail. When you also consider social media giants like LinkedIn & Facebook, the amount of letters people need to actually mail out has been reduced significantly. And it doesn’t stop there, text messages, phone apps (think What’s App, Slack, Telegram) have kept the majority of written communication digitized.
Combine all of that with the ease in which we can create digital documents that all can be fired over the internet pretty quickly – reaching our recipient instantaneously – and it’s not hard to see why so many people are moving to a paperless world and embracing everything that digital communications have to offer.
If that covers the lion share of mail, then what else are people using the Post Office for, other than packages & Pizza ads?
Think of all forms of ID and official documents; have you ever received those text alerts that you owe money to the IRS? That’s right…the IRS never sends notices via a text or a phone call. Rather it uses your good ol’ USPS. What about other important documents such as ID’s, Passports, Driver’s License, Social Security Cards etc? Yes, these also can only be delivered to you using the Postal Service.
So there are definitely a couple areas where e-mail or What’s App may not come in handy.
We all know that while the digital revolution is in full swing (and has changed most every aspect of our day-to-day lives) there are still a lot of things that have to go through the mail, still a lot of demand for physical documents, packages, and parcels to be delivered, and still a need for the services that help get our mail to us and to our intended recipients.
But does that really mean you still need a PO Box to receive those documents?
Well, that’s an entirely different conversation altogether.
See, when you maintain a PO Box, that means that you are sharing that with pretty much anyone else that needs to send mail your way. That includes utility companies, relatives etc. So with every single item you get, you are adding an extra reason to go to the Post Office, deal with traffic & grumpy employees. And most of the time, the mail you get is probably spam anyway.
The truth of the matter is there are a whole host of nontraditional mailbox services and mail scanning options available today that never existed before.
Many of these services are designed to work in conjunction with our digital approach to communication, giving individuals and businesses an opportunity to get the best of all worlds – a legitimate physical mailing solution and digitized services – all under one roof.
The trick, of course, is finding the right service to move forward with so that you are leveraging the right platform for all of your communication needs. This can be a bit of a sticky situation to navigate, again in large part because there are so many different services out there promising the moon and the stars when it comes to results but not really ever able to live up to those expectations.
There’s A Better Way
What if those rare items that need to absolutely be sent via the USPS once every 5 years, are shipped to your address when they arrive?
In other words, what if you get the lion share of your mail (99%) virtually and only get official government documents (1%) delivered to you?
Think of the time you would save annually, driving back and forth from the post office, think of the gas you would be saving, and think of the convenience of checking all incoming mail from the comfort of your own couch & phone.
Not only that, but think of how much time you’re going to be able to save wondering if something has arrived at your mailbox, driving down only to find it empty, and then maybe skipping that errand for a couple of days in around – only to find out that your package or parcel has arrived and was waiting for you to pick up.
The traditional USPS mailing system is a little bit broken, little slow, and (honestly) a little outdated. There are a lot of huge advantages you can leverage when you move to a mailing service like US Global Mail, for example – and just one of them is having a much better and firmer understanding of everything that’s being delivered and when it has actually arrived.
It gets better when you consider that all mail items you receive are scanned externally so you can actually see who the sender is and whether it’s worth it to have it scanned or just shredded. Additionally, all incoming mail items will be added into your Virtual Mailbox and from there, can be organized & labeled, the same way you use Gmail. As an example; let’s say that you want to look at your Tax Records or IRS Notices from the 3rd quarter of 2019, you can just filter your inbox based by date and easily recover it. Virtual Mailboxes are terrific tools for documentation purposes and keeping track of all files. No more paper mess; not in this decade!
You’ll never again have to worry about piles and piles of physical documents accumulating, having to find a place to store everything, or scanning things manually so that you have digital records you can rely on later down the line.
Instead, mail scanning services work to handle all of that heavy lifting for you. They give you the digital documents save on any device you want (on multiple devices all at once), streamlining your mail reception assess and generally just making life a whole lot easier to navigate forward.
And what about mobility? If you need to spend some days (or months and years) out of the country or even out of State, having a virtual mailbox means you can always access your paper mail on demand. No need to wait until you’re back, nor rely on relatives & friends in picking it up for you. Many times, people who take a couple weeks to go vacation overseas, will leave all mailing concerns with their friends back home; but do you really trust your friends that much as to pick up your social security check, or go through your financial data? It’s definitely not the most reliable alternative and in some cases, not the safest either.
Nobody wants to worry about whether or not their physical mail is going to become compromised in these situations. This is especially true if you are running a business and expect sensitive or confidential documents to be sent through the mail while you are away.
Having a service that can hold onto those packages and parcels for you rather than hoping one of your friends or family members can take care of that is a huge advantage and should give you a lot of peace of mind.
Additional perks you would not get with a traditional PO Box, include the Check Deposit. Let’s say you get a check from the social security office – why would you want to drive to the post office, get the check, then head to the bank and deposit it if you could do all this with the click of a button? And speaking of easy to use apps and clicking on screens, any undesirable mail you can easily shred also from within the app.
This just isn’t the kind of service that you’re going to be get when you’re having all of your mail handled through the USPS. This kind of hybridization mail and banking (as well as scanning and shredding) all works to create a more streamlined approach to mail services, putting you in the driver seat and giving you a whole lot more control over the overall experience from start to finish.
Below is a full breakdown of all the benefits you get, when using a Virtual Mailbox.
So circling back to our original question on the importance of maintaining a PO Box in 2020, we think there are more perks with using a Virtual Mailbox as opposed to a physical mailbox (or PO Box,) and it’s even half the price (because it’s all stored in the cloud.) A good portion of people’s banking needs is done using an app or even online banking. Most (if not all) bills are also paid online. Why not also use your phone to get your Snail Mail?
At the end of the day, a lot of people are moving away from a traditional PO Box and instead looking to leverage services like those provided by US Global Mail – and it isn’t hard to understand why.
People today want more control over their physical mail, want to take advantage of dependable and reliable scanning services, and are looking to find ways to move their physical mail to the digital route without having to sacrifice the ability to receive mail at the same time.
There are plenty of options out there willing to promise the moon and the stars when it comes to results, reliability, and overall service capabilities.
However, time and time again the folks at US Global Mail are recognized as the best in the business – a trusted service that you know is going to continue to innovate and pioneer new mail solutions that you’ll be able to take advantage of as a customer.
It’s a good idea to have a look at the services they offer currently to see if they are a fit for your needs. You’ll find that they offer services for more complete and comprehensive man what’s available from the USPS (as highlighted above) and that they have plans and packages available for every individual – and every business – regardless of budgetary constraints.
There’s no better time than right now to take control over the traditional mailing process. Work with US Global Mail to change things up completely, digitizing everything that can be digitized, and streamlining and scheduling the rest to better suit your specific needs and your specific schedule.