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Why Small Businesses Need Mail Forwarding

Own a business? You probably need to deal with lots of mail too. Streamline your mail management by having all packages & snail mail forwarded and managed online.

 

Running a small business is never an easy task; depending on what industry and customers you are catering to, you have to deal with complex operations, HR, state regulations (and the list goes on.) What is more, is that there are several administrative tasks that require the attention of an already very busy owner. 

 

At the time of writing this blog, Covid-19 has set in as a new reality. Remote work places, social distancing and stay at home orders, have disrupted literally every business. The ones that were able to go online, were able to get through the storm and operate under new circumstances. Local businesses such as restaurants that were not heavily invested on digital alternatives, had no option but to shut down. 

 

Being able to pick up the mail, became critical; with everyone working from home, who is going to visit the office just to pick up the mail? Very inconvenient and a great time killer. 

 

Virtual address on a map

 

What Is Mail Forwarding? 

 

When you would normally receive mail at your business location, with mail forwarding, you are notifying the USPS to redirect the mail delivery and instead of sending to your former location, it forwards all mail to the new one. The best way to think of this, is if a business re-locates: what happens to all contacts who only know your former address? You would have to go through the list of all friends, business associates & customers, to inform them of the address (something not practical at all.)



With mail forwarding, all your mail gets redirected from your former location to your new location. All you need to do to get this process underway, is completed a change of address with the USPS. And within a few days, you’re all set to go. 

 

How to Forward Business Mail

 

Now, before we get on to the best way to start forwarding business mail (i.e. by signing up with a virtual mailbox service), let us take a look at how to just use the United States Postal Service to change your business forwarding address.

 

The first option that the USPS offers is opening a PO box. So, without further ado, we are going to get right into the details.

 

USPS PO Boxes for Business

 

PO boxes are offered at many local post offices and can be used for both personal and business use. They are secure, accessible, and easy to open online. But, it is worth noting that you still have to visit the post office once or twice a week to collect everything that came in; for some, this is enough to put them off.

 

Before you make up your mind, we will have a look at the pros and cons of using a PO box as your mail forwarding for business service.

 

The Pros of PO Boxes

 

  • It’s a secure way of receiving mail while you’re not in the office.
  • You don’t have to worry about packages sitting on your doorstep.
  • It is easy to keep confidential documents safe and private.
  • You can travel to your PO box whenever is convenient for you.
  • Some are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

 

The Cons of PO Boxes

 

  • You have no choice but to go to the physical box once, twice, or three times a week.
  • It isn’t as secure as a virtual mailbox since it is right next to everybody else’s box.
  • If your office moves far away, you will have to change your PO box as it won’t move with you.

 

USPS Business Mail Pickup

 

This option is for those of you who receive a lot of mail (or numerous parcels and packages that are too big for the largest PO box).

 

How Does It Work?

 

The post office will receive all of your business address mail forwardings once your office has moved or you have started working from home full time. Then, you arrange a time to collect all your letters, parcels, and packages, turn up, gather them up, and you’re all set!

 

How Do I Get Started?

 

If you’re interested (although we’d advise you to check out the pros and cons below before you settle), here is how to set up business mail pick up. It won’t take long, you will just need to supply two forms of ID and fill in a form.

 

  1. Find the PS Form 1093-C online.
  2. Print it out.
  3. Fill out the “Application for Post Office Caller Service” section.
  4. Take your completed form and two types of government-approved US identification. For your primary form, you can use one of the following (ensuring they are either federal, state, or tribal issued):
    1. State driver’s license
    2. Non-driver’s ID card
    3. Uniformed Service ID card
    4. US Armed Forces card
    5. Corporate identification
    6. US passport
    7. US passport card
    8. US university identification
    9. US permanent resident card
    10. Any ID card issued by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services
    11. US certificate of naturalization or citizenship
    12. Tribal identification card

For your secondary ID document, you can bring one of the following:

  1. Lease agreement
  2. Mortgage agreement
  3. Deed of trust
  4. Voter registration card
  5. Home insurance policy
  6. Vehicle registration card
  7. Utility bill
  8. Form I-94
  9. Vehicle insurance policy
  10. Decide which service option you want. This could be 1 year or 6 months.
  11. Pay the fee. Make sure you do this at the post office where you’ll be using this service is located. You can pay with a credit or debit card, cash, check, or money order.
  12. Pick up your business mail whenever you need to.

 

The Pros of Business Mail Pick Up

 

  • You can receive large items without worrying about whether they will fit in your PO box.
  • If there aren’t any PO boxes available, this is your chance to get an even better service.
  • You can pick up your mail whenever is convenient.
  • Your business can easily scale up without fear that it won’t be able to cope with the influx of mail.

 

The Cons of Business Mail Pick Up

 

  • You might not want to pay for a mail service that lasts a year or 6 months, especially if you are a start-up as it restricts you to one location.
  • You still have to travel to a specific location to receive your mail.
  • Could be quite time consuming depending on travel time.

 

Okay, now that you are familiar with the mail forwarding business address services that the USPS offers, it is time to show you where you should really put your money!

 

Why Does Your Small Business Need Mail Forwarding?

 

There are plenty of reasons why your small business needs mail forwarding! We are about to go through each one in turn but, if you haven’t got much time, just scoot down to the end of this section where you will find a quick-glance list.

 

So, if you are still with us, let’s jump straight into all the benefits you’ll reap once you set up a virtual mail forwarding service.

 

Convenience

 

When a package is shipped to you, and requires you to be around to pick it up, it can be problematic if you happen to be out of the office, visiting a job site or simply too busy to receive your parcel. What business owners end up doing, is signing up for a PO box to receive all packages and mail. That gives birth to a new problem; you need to allocate a certain day of the week to drive to your local post office location, stand in line, and get your mail. But what if you had someone sign for your package only with your authorization, and at the fraction of the cost of having your secretary do so? What if you could request that package is shipped on demand to your location, for up to 80% off typical shipping rates? The time saving and shipping costs advantage to this is pretty obvious.

 

Virtual mailbox on desktop and mobile

Mail Security

 

When you get mail at your location, it can usually be accessed by pretty much anyone who wants to get their hand on it. From ID theft, to mail theft and everything in between, having mail sit at a location without supervision or while you’re away, is probably not the best idea. When you have your mail outsourced, all packages are stored in a warehouse with 24/7 surveillance systems, and on-site security personnel. There is no safer place to store your snail mail, than at a mail forwarding facility. 

 

Security lock

Look Sharp

 

As a company, there is nothing worse than looking unprofessional, right? Well, if you are an online business, or have simply decided to register it under a PO Box or your home address, that comes with a number of issues.

 

Not only are there added security concerns that you need to consider (angry customers knowing your place of residence etc,) but your business does not look professional at all. A business registered with a post office box, surely does not look as good as a business registered under a real physical address.

 

business address location

Home Privacy

 

We already touched on this a bit, but when you decide you want to use your home address for business mail, you are exposing that address to literally every ill-intentioned person online. Angry customers, employees or investors, can know of yours and your family’s whereabouts with a simple Google search. Registering your business with a real physical address that is not your home address, keeps your privacy and family protected.

 

Crook spying on home

Permanent Address

 

What happens if you decide to move the location of your business? You need to keep updating all your contact info, informing customers of a move, and completing change of address forms with the USPS. When you register for a virtual address, this address is yours for life, regardless of where you are physically located. Think of it; do you change your phone number whenever you move? Why would you therefore need to change your mailing address when you do so? 

 

Streamlined Mail Management

 

When you sign up for a virtual business address, all employees are able to digitally manage incoming mail. There is no requirement of someone being on site, and virtually, from the comfort of their own office or home, they can make a few clicks and handle mail online.

 

The Quick Glance Pros and Cons

 

For all of you busy bunnies who don’t have time right now for our fully-fledged conversation, here is a speedy summary of everything we talked about above.

 

Ready? Let’s go!

 

business people shake hands

 

The Quick Glance Pros

 

  • Convenience — you don’t need to be around to pick up your important document or package, an expert mail handler will do it for you.
  • Mail security — all your mail will be held in a secure facility complete with 24-hour video surveillance and more. You won’t find anywhere safer than this!
  • Look sharp — having your home address as your business address does not look very professional. With a virtual mailbox, this problem is solved.
  • Home privacy — using your home address for business can get messy. Angry customers, unhappy investors, and raging employees will be able to find you and your loved ones incredibly
  • Permanent — you will never have to go through the hassle of changing your mailing address every time you switch offices!
  • Streamlined mail management — all your employees can access your office’s mail from a smartphone app or their computer. No one needs to be onsite.

 

Okay, so what are the cons here then? Everything has a downside, right?

 

Well, yes, but the advantages of signing up for a virtual mail forwarding service drastically outweigh the potential disadvantages. Regardless, we will chat briefly about the things that aren’t so good about a virtual mailbox system. (Hint: when we said “things” we meant “thing” as there is only one potential downside)!

 

The Quick Glance Con

  • Extra cost — this especially applies to start-ups. We have found that many new companies do not want to incur the extra cost that business address forwarding proposes. However, it is important to remember that a virtual mailbox will bring you a huge return on your investment (looking at the advantages above will tell you that!).

 

The Bottom Line

 

To summarize; using a virtual mailing solution for your small business can be a big time and money saver. The convenience, security and savings it provides you with makes all the sense in the world to test out — yes, even if you are a start-up company.

 

If you need to reach out with any questions about business mail forwarding or get a proposal, contact us here.

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Why do People Get a Virtual Mailbox? In 2020…

Before we get into why you should get a virtual mailbox, you’ll need to know what a Virtual Mailbox is. A virtual mailbox is a service that offers a permanent street address.

 

Basically working the same as a traditional PO Box with some digital enhancements, you’ll be able to enjoy the best of all worlds when it comes to these two completely different forms of modern communication.

 

You’ll be able to receive snail mail new this virtual mailbox just the same as you would at a physical address or at a PO Box, but after that mail has been received (packages, parcels, and envelopes – everything goes) and then goes through a digitization process that makes these solutions so special.

 

Once you receive mail at this address, its exterior is scanned and uploaded and you can decide whether to have it opened and scanned, shredded, or forwarded to a different address.

 

The best thing about this entire approach – and the number one thing that makes virtual mailbox services so different and so beneficial – is that you are in complete control of your mail in a way that just isn’t possible with any other approach.

 

The amount of control that you are able to exert over your mail – how it is handled, whether or not it is opened and scanned, how it is destroyed, or how it is forwarded to an address of your choosing – but you firmly in the driver’s seat.

 

Instead of having to handle your mail on the terms of the USPS, picking it up at the post office during specific hours, having to physically go there to get your mail, and dealing with all that headache and hassle you become your own postmaster.

 

It’s a game changing paradigm shift and there are plenty of reasons why so many smart and strategic business owners and individuals are making the switch to virtual mailbox is today.

 

Here are 5 reasons why you should get one:

 

Documents being removed from a folder

 

It prevents Identity Theft

 

 

Mail theft is one of the most common ways for someone to steal your identity. By rifling through your mail, a thief can collect:

 

  • Your name and address
  • Social Security number
  • Telephone numbers
  • Email address(es)
  • Employment history 
  • Credit card and bank account information
  • Pre-approved credit card offers

 

This information could allow them to easily run up credit card bills and commit fraud in your name.

 

The security of your mail is more important than most people would think. Is it really safe for your mailbox to be on the street where not only your neighbors, but strangers can walk up to it and pick a lock?  If you have a virtual mailbox, only you can access your mail online. And the warehouse your company stores it in is protected by an alarm system, security cameras, and a key-card lock.

 

When you really think about it, our traditional mailing system is anything but secure and locked down.

 

Sure, it is a federal offense to tamper with someone’s mail – and a huge crime to even open up a piece of mail that hasn’t been addressed to you – but there aren’t a lot of safeguards put in place to protect your package or your parcel as it moves through the mailing process and then gets delivered to your doorstep or to your PO Box.

 

There are a lot of “weak links in the chain”, so to speak, that can become compromised without a lot of effort – but even worse, those weak links can become compromised without you knowing there has been a compromise or without the USPS becoming aware of the compromised, either.

 

That’s a huge problem.

 

By taking advantage of virtual mailbox services you patch a lot of those flaws in a way that just wouldn’t have been possible going the “traditional” route the way that millions of Americans do with their mail each and every single day.

 

Bulgar exiting a home from the window

 

It Prevents your house from being burglarized

 

More people are beginning to realize the dangers of advertising when they go on vacation. 75% of burglars use social media to find their targets and ⅔ of burglaries occur when people aren’t at home.

 

But have you ever thought of how your mailbox advertises your whereabouts? 

 

An overflowing mailbox is an obvious sign that you’re not at home and an open invitation for a nefarious passerby to swipe your belongings. 

 

With a virtual mailbox:

 

  • no one is aware of your absence
  • There is no overflow, you can receive an unlimited amount of mail
  • If you expect an important document to arrive while you’re away you can just check your mailbox online while still enjoying your vacation

 

We live in a world that is a lot less accepting of privacy than ever before, with people online constantly looking for ways to identify individuals that they disagree with – often times over the smallest things imaginable.

 

The last thing you want to do is make it even easier for these individuals to find out where you live, to potentially burglarized your home, or even to terrorize you and your loved ones. No one wants to worry about someone that may mean them harm finding out where they live just because your mailing address is attached to your physical address.

 

With the help of a virtual mailbox service you’re able to eliminate those issues entirely, but you’re also able to eliminate the issues we highlighted above of overflowing mailboxes making your home look like an easy target.

 

The mail is kept safe and secure, you are still immediately notify about any packages or parcels that come into your mailbox – as they come in, in real time – and you have a whole lot more control over what happens to your mail moving forward.

 

It’s Great  For Small Businesses

 

Operating a business out of you home has many advantages. You choose your hours and there’s no commute. However, when it comes to receiving mail, you may have to use your home address which has many disadvantages:

 

  • Strangers now know where you and your family reside, any disgruntled customer or vendor could show up at your home 
  • If you are ever sued, the summons will be served at your home alerting the neighbors to your situation
  • You may appear less professional  
  • And as business is picking up, you’re also going to have to spend an enormous amount of time checking the mailbox

 

Being able to separate your residential address – or even just your business address from your mailing address – provides an extra layer of safety, security, and (some) on anonymity that business owners deserve these days.

 

As we highlighted above, nobody should have to worry about complete and total strangers – especially potentially disgruntled or unhappy customers or clients – showing up at your doorstep unannounced and unwelcome just because your mailing address was the same as your home address.

 

By adding this extra buffer layer you’re able to add a bit more protection and security for yourself, your loved ones, and your property.

 

The other benefits that you’ll enjoy – appearing more professional and more credible, enjoying more control over how your business mail is handled, etc. – go hand-in-hand with the security and safety benefits that you get out of a virtual mailbox account.

 

This is one of those “must-have” business investments you’ll want to make that pays out significant returns on its overall cost, and does so almost straightaway. It really doesn’t get much better than that!

 

Cartoon depiction of a pack & ship store

With a virtual mailbox:

 

 

For example:

Heather’s Flowers

1321 Upland Drive #XXXX

Houston, TX 77043

  • Your family’s privacy isn’t comprised
  • You can sort through company mail from your laptop
  • You can retain limited liability for business activity or debts

 

A stack of USPS folders

 

It helps you sort through your mail

 

When you order from a magazine, or give out your address to a store or business for that enticing coupon, marketers descend on your mailbox like a pack of wolves. No one wants to check their mail for an important letter only to go home with piles upon piles of junk mail that they’re now responsible for discarding

With a virtual mailbox you can:

 

  • discard junk mail before it ever approaches your doorstep
  • Scan or forward the important documents you’ve been waiting for

 

Some people even use their Virtual Mailbox address solely for sign up purposes, so their mailbox at home is reserved for more personal letters like grandma’s birthday packages.

 

Sifting through your mailbox can take a lot of time, especially if you are running a small business or are particularly active on mailing lists.

 

With a virtual mailbox you’re able to separate out your business mail from your personal mail, you’re able to have junk mail discarded before it even hits your hands, and you’re able to keep track of all the mail that you are receiving with digital records of that piece of mail, the information regarding who sent that mail, and important timestamp information that you may need moving forward.

 

Combine all of that with the digital archival data that you can easily search and scan (as necessary) and it isn’t hard to see how this modern mailing system is so much more advanced than the one we all have been using for hundreds of years.

 

Imagine being able to not only quickly sift through all of the mail that you have received, but also easily being able to search all of the mail that you have digitally – going back years, even – just the same way you would search for something online through Google.

 

That’s not the kind of feature you’ll likely ever get to take advantage of directly from the folks at the USPS.


You can access your mail from anywhere in the world

 

Some people may opt to have a P.O. box instead of a virtual mailbox, but this last reason will reveal while the latter is the smarter choice. What happens when you move? Maybe your spouse gets a promotion in another state or even another country? Maybe you’re retiring and want a life of nonstop travel? How are you going to get your mail? 

With a PO BOX:

 

  • You don’t have the option of going to pick it up in person anymore. 
  • Some will not forward your mail to you
  • Even if they do forward mail, they won’t sort through it, so you’ll have to pay for those extra pounds of junk mail

 

With a virtual mailbox you can:

 

  • have a permanent address you can maintain for anywhere in the world.
  • forward only the important mail at discounted rates
  • have your mail scanned and available online
  • Shop in the US and have your purchase shipped to you for less

 

Ready to get your own virtual mailbox?

 

At the end of the day, all of the benefits that we highlighted above only begin to scratch the surface of the advantages you’ll be able to leverage when you choose to move forward with your own virtual mailbox.

 

On top of that, there are very few negatives to moving forward with these kinds of services – and none of those drawbacks would be considered deal breakers by any stretch of the imagination.

 

When you choose to move forward with a trustworthy virtual mailbox company, a company that has a real reputation in the industry as being a legitimate operator, as constantly innovating and improving their services, and a company that is committed to offering great solutions at affordable prices, there’s next to nothing to worry about.

 

Obviously, you’ll need to do your research and due diligence. This is, after all, decision that is going to hugely impacted the way that you interact with your mail from here on out.

 

This is not the kind of decision you want to make on a whim.

 

At the same time, while you’re conducting your research and due diligence you shouldn’t at all be surprised to discover glowingly positive reviews of all that US Global Mail services bring to the table.

 

There’s a reason why these services are considered to be some of the best in the business, a reason why the customer service is so well-regarded, and a reason why US Global Mail is so frequently recommended by people that have actively switched to a virtual mailbox and are loving the results.

 

Sign up with US Global Mail and get a physical street address in the US and get notified of its arrival through your virtual mailbox!

 

How to rent a virtual mailbox

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Moving/Traveling? Get your USPS mail online, in minutes!

When you’re traveling or living abroad, the preparation can come with a lot of headaches. Do you have all of the essentials? What are you allowed to bring?  And once you actually arrive the list gets longer!

 

We are, after all, talking about moving and living abroad. It isn’t like moving down the road, crosstown, or even across the country. There are a lot of moving parts that are going on behind the scenes with this decision, and there’s going to be the inevitable headache and hassle of moving house in general combined with having to handle moving to another country completely.

 

The last thing you want to do is add any extra “mental baggage” to your plate when you already have so much to juggle. You’ll want to take care of as much as you can while you are still in the states, recognizing that there are probably going to be a couple of things that fall through the cracks that you want to navigate after you are situated in your new home abroad.

 

Figuring out how to get your mail should be the least of your problems, but the solution isn’t always so obvious.

 

This is not something that you can afford to juggle around later down the line. You’re probably getting some pretty important documents in the mail right now (bills, tax information, identifying documents, etc.) and not only will you continue to need to get those pieces of mail moving forward – but you’re also going to need to make sure that those sensitive pieces of mail do not end up in the wrong hands, too.

 

Thankfully though, there are a couple of things you can do to make getting your mail when you are abroad a whole lot easier than it ever used to be – all while taking advantage of the best mail scanning services available.

 

In the rest of this detailed guide we cover all of the fundamentals you’ll need to know about getting the most out of these kinds of services, digging deep into the benefits that services offer while at the same time highlighting the important considerations you’ll need to focus on before you sign on the dotted line and have anyone open and scan your mail for you.

 

Ready to dive right in?

 

Let’s get right to it!

 

How do I get my mail when not at home?

 

One option you have is asking family or friends to check your mail. While that may seem simple enough, it’s actually not. Do you really want your friends or family reading through your bank statements and IRS notices? If you don’t want them to open it, how will they know which one’s important and which one is junk mail? They may not have the time to run to the post office as often as you need them to and you can end up overextending your wallet to pay for mail you don’t need. That’s where mail scanning comes in.

 

Plenty of people operate under the impression that they’ll be able to have their friends, family members, or even some of their trusted neighbors handle their mail – but as we highlighted above, who wants to pass all that responsibility off on to someone else that’s likely already juggling plenty of responsibilities on their own?

 

This is something that you’re going to want to hire the right professionals to help you with, and thanks to services like those provided by US Global Mail for example the process is pretty simple and straightforward.

 

You’ll be able to rely on the expertise of seasoned professionals in the mail scanning and mail forwarding industry that can keep your personal and private correspondence exactly that – personal and private – while still providing you with unlimited digital access to all of your important mail pieces almost instantly.

 

It’s tough to beat those kinds of benefits!

 

Smart phone & computer user interface of a virtual mailbox

 

How does mail scanning work?

 

After signing up for a mail forwarding service, any mail that’s addressed to your home will be redirected to a new address at a facility. As soon as it arrives, the outside of the envelope is scanned and uploaded to a virtual mailbox. Then, you have a few choices: 

 

  • See who the sender is and decide if you want the mail to be opened and scanned for you to read it asap
  • Ship to where you are
  • Securely shred it if it is junk mail like an unwanted catalog

 

As we highlighted a moment ago, all of this critical information regarding your mail is going to be forwarded to you directly along with a digital scan of the envelope or the outside of the package/parcel as well.

 

You’ll have the opportunity to have that piece of mail opened up and scanned digitally (securely and without compromising your privacy), with those digital files sent to you directly immediately upon scanning for your use and convenience.

 

On top of all that, you’ll also be able to have all of your digitally scanned mail pieces saved directly in a database that is 100% searchable and easy to cross reference. This is a huge benefit for those that want to be able to archive their physical mail similarly to the way that they archive their email.

 

Finally, the ability to send and forward that mail to your physical location (domestically or overseas) quickly as well as the ability to have those documents shredded and destroyed securely rounds out the big benefits you’ll be able to enjoy when you move forward with an organization like US Global Mail.

 

US Global Mail mail scanning process

 

Is Mail Scanning Quick and Reliable?

 

It depends; some services, like US Global Mail scan mail contents within 2-4 hours after your request but others can take up to 24 hours or more.

 

Services that have lots of addresses and usually have mail shipped from those locations to their central location before it is scanned can take several days for scans.

 

As a general rule, though, you can expect to have your mail scanned (mail that you choose to have scanned, that is) up and ready to rock and roll on your digital US Global Mail dashboard in just a few hours.

 

The scanning process is quick and super accurate, guaranteeing a 1:1 digital replica made of the actual mail pieces that you want to have added to your digital dashboard. You’ll be able to read that document in stunning high definition resolution, can then print that document at your physical location if you need a hard copy, and also have the ability to have the actual physical piece of mail sent to you directly (something that should take a couple of days to a week or more, depending entirely on your final destination).

 

Woman holding a phone in her hand that shows virtual mail

 

Is Mail scanning secure?

 

Again, this depends on which company you choose. Some companies are vague about their security measures and do not list them clearly on their site.

 

It is of the utmost importance that you double verify that the mail scanning and mail forwarding service you choose to move forward with is trustworthy and reputable.

 

While there are a lot of great companies in this industry offering fantastic services, like industry leaders US Global Mail, there are also a lot of fly-by-night operations out there that promise the moon and the stars but may not be quite as reliable or as secure as you are expecting.

 

It wouldn’t be fair to say that these fly-by-night or smaller time operations are acting maliciously (the overwhelming majority of them are not). It’s just that they do not have the experience, the infrastructure, or the protocols to guarantee the safety and security of your mail and sensitive information contained within the way that companies like US Global Mail can.

 

This is why research and due diligence is such a huge piece of the puzzle. You can afford to have someone handling your mail that you haven’t fully vetted and verified ahead of time.


To do your homework:

 

Here are 5 questions to ask to check if mail scanning is secure:

  1. What is the scan process?
  2. Is the scan encrypted during upload? Where is it stored- local machines or cloud?
  3. Are employees require to have background checks?
  4. Do they track every touch to your mail piece and record that info?
  5. Do they shred discarded mail?

 

If the service you’re looking at can answer yes to all those questions, your mail is actually a lot safer than it would be in actual mailbox!

 

Is Mail Scanning affordable?

 

Yes. Especially since you can read the contents of your mail ASAP and not have to ship it to yourself, wherever you are!

You certainly won’t have to spend a small fortune on mail forwarding and mail scanning services from companies like US Global Mail, and won’t have to spend anywhere near as much money as you might have renting an oversized PO Box through the USPS to hold and capture all of your physical mail for months (if not longer) on end.

 

Combine that with the fact that the USPS simply isn’t going to offer the same mail scanning or digitizing services that you get from a reliable company like US Global Mail – not to mention all of the other benefits that an organization like this offers (including check cashing, for example) – and it becomes a no-brainer the specialty services rather than go in a different direction.

 

It’s not a bad idea to research your options to find the best deal in the market, but expect leaders in the industry to offer the most competitive prices without cutting corners as far as safety, security, or privacy protections are concerned.

 

The odds are pretty good that you’ll be able to find a mail scanning and forwarding service that fits your needs and your budget perfectly if only you’ll do a little bit of due diligence to double verify that things are good to go!

 

Which services offer mail scanning?

 

We have complied a list of the popular mail forwarding services that include mail scanning here. Pick one that works best for you.

 

Of course, we would like to recommend ourselves- US Global Mail– as the very best one out there!

 

US Global Mail has a sterling silver reputation in the mail scanning and mail forwarding industry, a reputation built on the back of thousands of clients in the United States and worldwide taking advantage of these services on a day to day basis for a number of years.

 

Best of all, this sterling silver reputation isn’t something that US Global Mail speaks about exclusively.

 

You’ll be able to independently verify the services with just a little bit of research online, and the odds are good that you’ll come across an overwhelming flood of glowingly positive reviews that support this fantastic reputation, too.

 

Combine all of that with very affordable pricing, a whole host of ancillary services that help to separate this company from the rest of the pack, and an overall approach to your security and privacy you just won’t find elsewhere and it’s not difficult to see why so many people choose US Global Mail over competitors time and time again.

 

A smart phone that has the mailbox flag on it

 

Does USPS offer mail scanning?

 

Via Informed Delivery you can an email from the USPS with an image of the outside of your mail. You can digitally preview your mail and packages scheduled to arrive that day.

 

Informed Delivery allows you to view greyscale images of the exterior, address side of letter-sized mailpieces. Images are only provided for letter-sized mailpieces that are processed through USPS’ automated equipment.

 

So while that is convenient, you cannot read the contents of your mail. That can only be done with a mail scanning service. If you’re only looking for a scan of the envelope itself (which can sometimes be a little bit hit or miss) this may be something that you’re interested in for sure.

 

Informed Delivery is definitely a fantastic service to take advantage of if you are going to be staying in the United States. But the moment that you start to consider moving abroad – or even traveling extensively overseas – you’ll want to look at more purpose built mail scanning and mail forwarding services like US Global Mail.

 

The USPS is somewhat limited in their abilities to innovate and to improve their services the way that a more flexible organization like this one can, through no fault of their own aside from the fact that the federal government is calling all the shots.

 

If you’re looking for a more complete and comprehensive solution that gives you total control over your mail it’s really tough to beat the suite of services and solutions provided by US Global Mail – services and solutions that are being expanded on and approved upon day after day!

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NY, CA, TX, FL – what state should your mail forwarding address be in 2020? The answer will surprise you!

So, when you are ready to sign up for a mail forwarding service after you do all the due diligence (rates, plans, shipping prices, trustworthiness etc,) do you look for a service that lets you reserve an address in the same state you are moving out of?

 

Don’t. Your mail forwarding address should be state-agnostic. Really, its a virtual address, in the cloud. So the state does not matter one bit. There are far more important criteria that you should consider, when choosing this important service. Click here for a list of important factors to consider & associated pricing.

 

One of the biggest advantages of moving forward with a virtual address is that it does not have to be tangibly associated with your actual physical location – wherever that might be on the planet today.

 

There’s absolutely no reason whatsoever you could be sitting on a beach in Miami while using a virtual address based out of New York City – using that same address when you decide to spend a month in Thailand, a week in Moscow, or a weekend in Paris.

 

In fact, some would argue that the biggest leverage you get out of a virtual address is the fact that it isn’t ever tied to your physical location. Why waste that big benefit when you don’t have to?

 

Let’s dig a little bit deeper into where you should set up your virtual address moving forward!

 

World traveler stepping on the top of a Globe map

 

Does the state of my address matter? Will I become a resident & pay taxes in the state in which I have my mail forwarding address?

 

Once you fill out a change of address form with the USPS, it will forward your mail to that address, irrespective of where in the US it is. And US laws don’t make you liable for taxes in any state without living there. Just having an address in the state does not mean you become a resident of that state.

 

Just to be perfectly clear, this means that you can have a mailing address set up through your forwarding service based out of Reno, Nevada while your business, your job, and your entire life is headquartered in Saginaw, Michigan.

 

There’s no rules, no regulations, and no laws restricting you from having this kind of setup. On top of that, there’s absolutely zero penalty whatsoever to having your mailing address physically separate from your physical address.

 

As long as you still pay your state and federal taxes based on the rules, regulations, and laws dictating that based upon your physical location and where you have earned your income you have no worries at all.

 

On the flip side of things, it’s important to understand that you are not going to be able to use this mailing address from a company like US Global Mail as proof of residency somewhere else.

 

Florida citizens do not have to pay state income taxes, but that doesn’t mean that a US Global Mail based out of Tampa, Florida while you are living and working in New York City gives you those same tax benefits.

 

That’s just not the way the system works and it’s critically important that you understand that going forward.

 

How does it work?

 

You can simply forward your mail from your existing address to the address of the mail forwarding company, and no one will be wiser! That is no one will know what your new address is – they will keep sending you mail at the old address and USPS will redirect it to your  new address. The redirect request with the USPS will work for 6 months at a time and will have to be renewed. This option is also great when you don’t want to move your address permanently and expect to cancel the mail forwarding service at some time in the future.

 

There are a whole host of other benefits you get to take advantage of when you move forward with a mail forwarding service like US Global Mail, too.

 

We are talking about benefits like:

 

  • Extra anonymity and privacy with these kinds of mailing addresses
  • The ability to eliminate junk mail from your life forever
  • An opportunity to know EXACTLY what has been sent to you before you check your mailbox
  • An opportunity to digitize your entire mail reception history for your own personal records
  • The chance to search that digital record quickly, easily, and effectively
  • Check-cashing services that have all checks redirected to your bank directly to be deposited ASAP

 

… And that’s just the tip of the iceberg!

 

It’s not hard to see why so many people choose to take advantage of mail forwarding services today.

 

Condominiums in downtown Miami

 

Fancy/Premium addresses:  Mail forwarding companies or commercial mail receiving agencies (CMRA’s) sometimes will offer a choice of several states and addresses to you. Your personal mailbox number could potentially be in New York, Florida, Texas, California, the possibilities are endless! However, these fancy or “premium” addresses can come at a steep price; often a discreet +$14.99 is hidden somewhere! Watch out. And don’t pay for something you absolutely will get no additional value out of. Instead choose the service that works best for your needs.

 

Truth be told, those “premium addresses” are almost never worth the extra price tag.

 

Sure, the vanity address can be cool – for little while – but who is really paying attention to your address (your mailing address, anyway) enough for that to matter?

 

The odds are pretty good that they shine out those premium, fancy vanity addresses will wear off pretty quickly. Well before the price tag comes down, anyway.

 

All the money you would have spent on those vanity addresses can be redirected to get a couple of months – or even a year – of quality mail forwarding and mail scanning services from an organization like US Global Mail, without missing out of any of the benefits those addresses would have brought to the table.

 

When is having an address in a particular state important?

 

If you have a business and you are based in Florida and you need to bill your customers, it makes total sense to have a billing address in the city or at least the state you operate from. From a customer standpoint, it looks less suspicious. They won’t have to question the authenticity of who they are sending their money to. Certain health care providers will also require you to reside in the state you are covered in to maintain your insurance rates. The rates for insurance coverage can vary state-to-state. If you like the plan you currently have, it would be very important to maintain an address in your current residency state. If you are trying to be discreet about moving or traveling abroad, then you do have the anonymity of maintaining your residency state address. Other than those few areas though, there’s no issue in having an address in a different state; rather it’s just a preference. In that case, those options are certainly available to you!

 

The real big benefit in moving forward with a mail forwarding service that lets you pick where your new mailing address is located is the freedom you are afforded with that choice.

 

If you want your customers to feel like you are more of a local business than you are, by all means pick and address near where most of them live – even while you run that business from across the country or across the world.

 

If you want your customers to feel like you are more of a “global business”, don’t be shy about picking a mailing address in any of the major financial hub cities in the country – cities like New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Boston.

 

If you just want an extra layer of security and protection when you give up your mailing address, pick and address that sits squarely in middle America. Something in Ohio, something in Iowa, and something in Wisconsin works just as well as anything else!

 

The freedom for you to pick and choose where you are new mailing address is located is a huge advantage you don’t want to overlook.

 

The Dallas skyline

Vanity Addresses: are they really worth it?

 

So, you’ve researched a few mail forwarding companies; one company offers a real street address in Nevada. Another company offers 3 street addresses (one in Wisconsin, one in Texas, and one in New York etc.) In this example, let’s say the Wisconsin address is their standard address. The Texas and NY addresses are premium (meaning they cost more.) Standard mailbox prices are usually “free”, or, included in the price of membership. The prices for a premium address can range anywhere from an extra $4.95 per month and all the way up to $12.95 per month.

 

So the real question is: what is the value in these “premium” addresses? Is it just the address itself? The location? Convenience? Why would you want to pay extra for a mailing address? Here you will find, transparent pricing with no hidden fees nor unnecessary addresses that beef up your bill.

 

It all comes down to your expectations, your budget, and the kinds of services that come included with that new “premium” address.

 

If you are paying a mountain of money for nothing more than a vanity address, is it really worth the extra expense, headache, and hassle to move forward?

 

Or would you rather spend that money on a full-service, top to bottom mail scanning and mail forwarding organization that offers a whole host of other benefits on top of a new, discrete mailing address?

 

The choice is yours and yours alone. Only you will be able to know what your best fit the be.

 

Payment Example

 

You want a personal mailing address to give out to your friends and family and you want a separate address for your bills and taxes, all on the same account of course:

 

  • Standard mailing address on an individual plan, $25/mo
  • Premium mailing address on an individual plan $25 + $4.95/mo
  • Separate 1583 forms for the addresses which need to be notarized
  • One forwarding request (you can only have one open at a time via USPS), then reach out to everyone who needs your change of address

 

A lot of the premium address locations are UPS storefronts. Not a private office or warehouse that deals specifically with commercial mail and package forwarding, a UPS store. Which is why these addresses are not equipped to handle all incoming mail and packages. They literally are not built for it. On top of that, each location will handle mail differently, since the UPS stores are not owned or managed by the CMRA, the possibility of errors occurring increases dramatically.

 

Delayed access to mail

Another issue with using vanity addresses is that often times the mail from those addresses is sent to the company central warehouse for processing. This means a delay for 3-5 business days on your mail. Using the company central warehouse address gets you access to your mail much quicker.

 

For example, at US Global Mail, we enter all mail received within 12 – 24 hours in customer virtual mailboxes.

 

Access to digital mail through the virtual mailbox

Final thoughts:

 

In a nutshell, if you absolutely cannot live without an address in a particular state, use the mail redirect option with the USPS and keep forwarding your mail. That lets you keep your address intact.

 

Otherwise, simply do a permanent change of address with the USPS and rest easy. You will get your mail via a Virtual Mailbox anyway!

 

At the end of the day, it really does come down to your goals, your expectations, and your budget.

 

There are a lot of options out there to pick and choose from – including moving forward with the USPS. But services like US Global Mail provide a lot of benefits that the USPS simply cannot provide right now and may never be able to offer in the future, too.

 

Look at how you hope to take advantage of these mail forwarding services today and in the future and choose a service that’s going to best align with those goals. Find a service that is affordable, reputable, and reliable and you won’t have any headache or hassle moving forward.

 

Best of luck!

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Access Urgent Mail in Minutes!

Nothing can be more frustrating than not being able to access your stuff whenever you want. As an expat, this might just be a new way of life for you. Limited access to your bank accounts, unreliable Wi-Fi, unstable cellular connections etc., the list can go on; it just isn’t as readily available as you were once used to. In this scenario, stuff is in reference to your mail!