Comparisons & Guides

USPS (United States Postal Service) vs Pitney Bowes

April 18, 2024
Last Edited:
June 19, 2024
Read time:
7 min
Anthony Robison
CEO & Founder
Anthony Robinson
Founder & CEO @ ShipScience

USPS (United States Postal Service) vs Pitney Bowes

When it comes to mailing and shipping, businesses have two main options: the United States Postal Service (USPS) and Pitney Bowes. Both offer a range of services to meet various mailing needs, but the question remains: which one is better? In this article, we will take you through a detailed comparison of USPS and Pitney Bowes, covering everything from their history and services to postage rates, customer satisfaction, and reliability. Let’s dive in.

History of USPS and Pitney Bowes

Established by the founding fathers in 1775, the USPS is the country’s oldest and most prominent postal service. It serves 160 million delivery points, processing over 470 million mailpieces every day. Pitney Bowes, on the other hand, was founded in 1920 as a postage meter manufacturer. Over the years, it has evolved into a technology company that offers a range of mailing, shipping, and e-commerce services.

Despite being the oldest postal service in the country, the USPS has faced numerous challenges in recent years. The rise of digital communication has led to a decline in traditional mail usage, and the organization has struggled to adapt to the changing landscape. However, it remains a vital part of the country’s infrastructure, providing essential services to millions of Americans every day.

Pitney Bowes, on the other hand, has been at the forefront of innovation in the mailing and shipping industry. In addition to its traditional postage meter business, the company has developed a range of cutting-edge technologies, including software for tracking and managing packages, and solutions for e-commerce businesses. Today, Pitney Bowes is a global leader in the field, with operations in over 100 countries around the world.

USPS and Pitney Bowes: What do they do?

USPS offers a wide range of mailing and shipping services, including first-class mail, priority mail, express mail, parcel select, and global express guaranteed. It also offers ancillary services like PO Boxes, mail forwarding, and international mail.

Pitney Bowes, on the other hand, offers mailing and shipping solutions for businesses of all sizes, including postage meters, shipping software, and global e-commerce solutions. It also provides services like mail presorting, address validation, and tracking.

One of the key differences between USPS and Pitney Bowes is their target audience. While USPS caters to individual customers and small businesses, Pitney Bowes primarily serves larger businesses with high-volume shipping needs. Additionally, Pitney Bowes offers more advanced technology solutions, such as data analytics and customer engagement tools, to help businesses optimize their shipping processes and improve customer satisfaction.

Advantages of using USPS for mailing needs

  • Extensive network making it easy to access and send mail to any part of the country.
  • Affordable rates, particularly for small and lightweight parcels.
  • Various services catering to businesses, including bulk mail discounts, Every Door Direct Mail, and postage stamp customization.
  • Free Saturday delivery, ideal for e-commerce businesses needing fast and reliable shipping.
  • Commitment to sustainability with eco-friendly initiatives, such as using alternative fuel vehicles and promoting recycling.

Advantages of using Pitney Bowes for mailing needs

  • Personalized solutions tailored for small and medium-sized businesses.
  • Cost-effective postage rates for both domestic and international shipping services.
  • A variety of mailing software and hardware solutions to streamline processes.
  • Accurate address validation and mail tracking services.
  • Expert guidance and support for optimizing mailing and shipping operations.
  • Training and resources for staying up-to-date with latest mailing trends and regulations.

Disadvantages of using USPS for mailing needs

  • May not offer the same level of tracking as private carriers like FedEx and UPS.
  • May not be the most cost-effective option for larger and heavier packages.
  • Long wait times in post offices, particularly around the holiday season.
  • Potential for delayed deliveries, which can affect customer satisfaction.
  • Possible service cuts and closures due to financial challenges.

Disadvantages of using Pitney Bowes for mailing needs

  • May not be as accessible as USPS, particularly in remote areas.
  • Risk of system outages or hardware failure.
  • Services may not be as affordable for small-scale businesses.
  • Lack of flexibility in services compared to USPS.
  • Longer processing time for international mail, which can delay business communications.

How much does it cost to use USPS for mailing?

The cost of using USPS for mailing depends on the service you choose, the size and weight of your package, and the destination. For example, the price of a first-class stamp is currently 55 cents, while priority mail starts at $7.70. USPS also offers bulk mailing discounts and volume-based postage rates.

USPS also offers additional services that can affect the cost of your mailing, such as tracking or insurance for a package, which may incur additional fees. For international mail, costs vary based on the destination and weight of the package. It’s advisable to check the USPS website or speak with a representative to determine the most cost-effective option for your needs.

How much does it cost to use Pitney Bowes for mailing?

Pitney Bowes offers various pricing plans depending on the services you require. For example, its SendPro Online service offers a monthly subscription fee of $4.99, while its Postage Meters start at $19.99 per month. Additionally, Pitney Bowes offers volume-based discounts on postage rates for businesses that send a large volume of mail.

Comparison of postage rates between USPS and Pitney Bowes

Comparing the postage rates of USPS and Pitney Bowes is a complex process, as it depends on several variables, including package size, weight, and destination. In general, USPS tends to be more affordable for smaller and lighter packages, while Pitney Bowes may offer cheaper rates for businesses sending heavier or bulkier packages. It is best to compare the two services’ rates based on your specific mailing needs to determine which one is more cost-effective for you.

Another factor to consider when comparing the two is the speed of delivery. USPS offers a range of delivery options, including Priority Mail and Priority Mail Express, which can guarantee delivery within a certain timeframe. Pitney Bowes also offers expedited shipping options, but they may come at a higher cost. It is important to weigh the cost and speed of delivery when choosing between the two services.

In addition to postage rates and delivery speed, consider the additional services offered by USPS and Pitney Bowes. USPS offers certified mail, registered mail, and insurance options, while Pitney Bowes provides insurance options and tracking and reporting tools for businesses. Depending on your specific needs, one service may offer more beneficial additional services than the other.

How to choose between USPS and Pitney Bowes for your business needs

When choosing between USPS and Pitney Bowes, it’s crucial to consider your business’s specific needs. Factor in package size, frequency of use, destination, and tracking options. If you are a small business with less frequent mailing needs, USPS may be the more cost-effective option. However, if you send a considerable volume of mail and require more personalized solutions, Pitney Bowes may be a better choice.

Features and services offered by USPS vs Pitney Bowes

USPS offers various services like priority mail, PO Boxes, international mail services, and Every Door Direct Mail. Pitney Bowes, on the other hand, offers services like postage meters, shipping software, and mail tracking solutions. Additionally, Pitney Bowes also offers e-commerce solutions for both domestic and international businesses.

Customer satisfaction ratings of USPS vs Pitney Bowes

Based on customer satisfaction ratings, both USPS and Pitney Bowes receive mixed reviews. While some customers appreciate the affordability and accessibility of USPS, others complain about issues like lost or delayed packages. Similarly, Pitney Bowes receives praise for its personalized solutions, but some customers have complaints about system failures and poor customer support. It’s essential to consider these factors when choosing between the two mailing services.

How reliable is the delivery service of USPS vs Pitney Bowes?

Both USPS and Pitney Bowes are known for their reliable delivery services. USPS has a delivery score of 95.4%, while Pitney Bowes boasts a 98.4% on-time delivery rate. However, both may face delays during peak seasons like holidays.

Future outlook and growth potential of USPS vs Pitney Bowes

USPS and Pitney Bowes both face a range of challenges. For USPS, it’s the declining mail volume; for Pitney Bowes, it’s increased competition from other shipping and e-commerce companies. Nevertheless, both companies are expanding their services and investing in technology to keep up with the changing market. USPS has introduced several initiatives like Informed Delivery and Package Intercept, while Pitney Bowes is focusing on creating personalized solutions tailored to businesses’ unique needs.

Conclusion: Which one is better – USPS or Pitney Bowes?

The answer to this question depends on your specific mailing needs. While USPS may be more accessible and affordable for small scale businesses, Pitney Bowes may offer more personalized solutions for large-scale companies. It’s crucial to consider factors like package size, frequency of use, and tracking options when choosing between the two services. Ultimately, both USPS and Pitney Bowes are reliable mailing services that offer a range of solutions for businesses of all sizes.

Revolutionize your parcel shipping strategy.

Get a free analysis