Stop Making USPS Runs

Stop Making USPS Runs
Being a small business owner can be tough, especially when you’re just starting out. Some days it feels like you’re wearing a million different hats – you’re Product Development, Social Media Expert, Crafter, Wrapper, Packer, Shipper, Delivery Driver… it’s a never ending list of to-do’s and tasks ahead of you and you’re wishing someone had come up with a real cloning device by now.

Fret not, I’m here to knock one of those tasks off your list today.

Introducing: USPS Scheduled Pick Ups.

That’s right. Are you shipping something Priority Mail or First Class? Skip the post office line and schedule a pick up!

My standard delivery option on Etsy is USPS First Class 2-5 day. (Screenshot below in case you need to double check your own shop’s setup). 

Etsy Shipment Screen

 

Most of my shipments are packaged up the night before (while my son is sleeping and can’t be tempted to help washi tape #allthethings). So I get all my packages wrapped, packed, and labeled with their pre-paid shipping labels. Then…

I head on over to www.usps.com and select Mail & Ship > Schedule a Pickup. 

Schedule a Pickup

 

Next, I fill in my pick up information so they know where to go. 
Schedule a Pickup Page 1

Then I let them know exactly where my shipment will be. I live in a nice neighborhood, so leaving packages on my front door is an option. (Not to mention, I’m usually home during the day with my son so I have a broad view of my front yard for the majority of the day). However, if you live in a neighborhood where things tend to go missing, they have other options for you. 

You can also schedule what time the pick up needs to be done (please note fees apply for this option) or you can have them pick up during the regular delivery schedule (FREE). 

Schedule a Pickup Page 2

 Once you enter in that information, they’ll pull up a list of available dates for you. Since I’m doing this at night, the next business day is always my first option. 

Calendar

The last step is to let them know how many packages they’re picking up, and approximately how much the total weight is. I’m shipping small 6″ x 9″ bubble mailers, so this part is extremely easy for me. 

Confused on what type of mail you’re sending? Remember, if you’re shipping through Etsy or Paypal, it will tell you the service type on the shipment confirmation screen (see first photo). 
How Many Items

If you’re having trouble getting that “Schedule a Pickup” button on the bottom right hand corner to light up blue, make sure you’ve checked the “I have read, understand, and agree….” check box. Sometimes even then, my little box will still be grayed out. I usually go back and re-enter the number next to the type of mail I’m sending and then re-enter the weight and it’ll light up for me. 

You did it! Now go ahead and click “Schedule a Pickup” to be taken to the confirmation screen.

Confirmation

Woohoo! You’re pickup has been scheduled. They’ll give you a confirmation code and send you an e-mail letting you know that it’s been scheduled. Just don’t forget to place your packages in the designated area on the day they come by :). 

Need confirmation that the order was picked up? USPS will automatically e-mail you as soon as they pick up and scan in the package. How awesome is that?

I hope this short tutorial helps free up just a little more time in your busy schedule. I know being a pregnant stay at home mom with a wild toddler, things can get crazy during the day. USPS Pick Up and I have become the best of friends!

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