Monday, April 18, 2011

Monday Madness - USPS Shipping Rates Increase

With lots of and the United States focused on income taxes, I was taken by surprise when I heard the news about postal rate increases. Regular letter rates will be staying the same, but shipping packages will cost a little bit more.  If you're like me, you probably cut it pretty close on what you charge to ship your Etsy products.

The new rates for the USPS went into effect Sunday, April 17, 2011.  Stamps.com has a list of changes for the postal rates.  If you want to determine what your new shipping Prices will be, the USPS site has the information plus a postage rate calculator.  When cool resource I didn't know they had is the prepaid Forever flat rate Priority mail boxes.  You can pay the flat rate now at lower prices and then use them to ship whenever. This concept is similar to the Forever postage stamps, which are bought at current postage prices and can be used any time in the future.

Since these rates are already in effect, you'll want to go through your product listings and reevaluate the shipping prices you are charging as soon as possible.  The easiest way to quickly changed the shipping amount on multiple items for your Etsy shop is to click on Your Account.
  • Now, look at the menu on the left side of the page. Under Shop Settings, click on Shipping & Payment.  
  • There, you can create a shipping profile to cover different items with similar weights or shipping needs.  
  • For example, I have created profiles for very small items, small items, digital delivery, and heavier items. Whenever I add a new product to my shop, I can choose the shipping profile that best fits that item, saving me some time on entering information.  
  • Once you've created the profiles, this same page will allow you to apply the profiles to multiple items in your shop by clicking on Apply Shipping Profiles to multiple listings.
  • I'm sure you'll find this useful not only for postal rate increases, but also for changes in the costs of packaging materials or to correct items that you accidentally placed in the wrong shipping category.
Photo courtesy USPS.com
 In another interesting bit of news from our dear postal service, somebody neglected to pay attention to the detail of the new Forever Stamp depicting the Statue of Liberty.  The USPS printed billions of stamps with the famous image before finding out they had accidentally used a photo of the Statue of Liberty replica that is part of the New York-New York Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas rather than one of the real Lady Liberty herself.  Having visited both versions of this American icon, I can tell you that the real statue has more streaks and discoloring due to the weather and is made from completely different materials. Nice picture, though. :-)

3 mad comments:

Jennifer said...

Thanks for posting this, as I knew the change was coming but couldn't remember when. I also love the links you included and the tutorial on shipping profiles. Your blog is a great resource!

Suzanne said...

Thank you Karen - caught me unaware.
Looks like I have to fix my shipping as I have many items under 3 ounces. I'm posting this link around.

Debbie @ OtRD said...

I didn't know about this increase! Thanks for posting about it.

Just found your site for the first time and enjoying it.

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