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If you send more than 5 letters a day then you can save money with owning a franking machine in your company.

You need to make sure you get a machine from a Royal Mail approved supplier, since they don’t directly provide the machines. The type of machine you need depends the volume of mail and the size of the items you send. We can help you find the right solution by comparing the available offers on the market from the leading suppliers. Simply fill out the form above to receive the latest deals.

 

Process your post with speed with a new franking machine for your office and enjoy up to 34% discounts on postage from Royal Mail. There are so many more advantages than just the savings, you can design the franking logo offering your customers a more professional image when they receive your mail, top up postage credits at the touch of a button, managing all your postage costs into one invoice. You can save money on your postage costs if you send just 5 letters or parcels daily, allowing small business or self-employed to enjoy the power of franking along-side big corporations.

You can choose to rent, lease or buy your machine and there will be additional charges to take into consideration such as maintenance contracts, ink and labels. Before you decide which option is best for you there are a few things you need to consider:

What is the volume of postage you send each day – for a higher volume you will need a franking machine with an automatic feeder that processes mail quickly and efficiently.

Budget – For a lower initial outlay rental is a great option, however over the course of the contract term buying a machine usually works out cheaper.

Plans for expansion. There is the option to upgrade or downgrade the machine in many of the contracts. This is a brilliant option for fast-growing businesses or businesses that like to keep their options open.

The three types of machine

Small office and home use – these machines are fully portable and can easily be kept on a desk or put away when not in use. There are some great rental deals on these machines as a starter to introduce you into the world of franking including a 30-day free trial.

Medium volume – this is for companies that send more than 50 but less than 250 items per pay. These are also available on a rental contract or purchase. These are larger machines that would need a dedicated space but include automatic feeders and efficient mail processing.

High Volume – these machines are designed for people spending over
1000/day on postage. These are totally automatic and can process over 100 items per minute. Often offering a great array of features such as envelope sealing, full-colour printing and dynamic mail processing.

                                    Free Trial

If you are new to franking, renting a machine is a great option with entry level machines for as low as £14 a month. Many companies offer a 30-day free trial in order to test before deciding to commit to a rental period. The rental options are the ideal solution for small businesses with a low initial monetary outlay.

If you send a high volume and you are sure that franking is right for your business, then you may look at purchasing the model outright. Prices start from £995 for a new Neopost Autostamp2 which is perfectly capable of handling up to 50 letters/day. If you need a higher volume there are more advanced machines which can even have numerous slogans for your mail.

Higher Level Of Professionalism

Many companies choose to use a franking machine to increase the level of professionalism on outgoing mail. You can choose to add your logo, logo and text, logo and return address or text only alongside the franking stamp. This means customers will immediately know who the mail is from increasing open rates of the mail. With the text you can also extend your marketing and branding campaign right to the hands of your customers. You will also be able to print your return address on the envelopes ensuring you receive any unopened mail, allowing you to keep track of any undelivered mail so you can keep your prospects and mailing list up-to-date. You will be able to change what is printed on the envelopes to keep your marketing campaign alive and fresh, also keep track of what is sent using the online tracking system. If you don’t have the time to create a logo or text many companies choose a pre-made stamp that is pre-programed in the machine.

Mailmark Franking

In 2016 Royal Mail introduced Mailmark franking technology, which basically is a 2d barcode printed onto the envelope of the franking machine. This is the latest technology from Royal Mail developed to offer a higher level of tracking and reporting with each item of mail. Formerly known as Enterprise Intelligent Barcode, the barcode holds the information about the letter in an easy readable format by Royal Mail. Royal Mail has invested millions on upgrading their franking tracking system bringing the Royal Mail tracking system into the 21st century. By January 2018 the traditional “Crown and die” franking will be phased out and so all franking will make the transition to the Mailmark.

Online Tracking

With Mailmark you can tell from Royal mail’s online system exactlywhere your mail is, from when it is accepted at a mail center, or if going out for delivery. This allows complete control over your postage alongside your marketing campaign. You would be able to call or text customers on the day the mail is scheduled for delivery, or have extra customer service agents in place for the day a special offer is scheduled to be received. With in-depth online reporting, you can identify any error in postage if a letter has been delayed or give clients an update of their delivery schedule with a click of a button.
As your mail is produced by your franking machine, a mail mark barcode is added. The detail of the mail is then loaded electronically and then sent to Royal mail by the franking machine that is connected automatically to the internet. As the mail rolls through the system at the processing office, the barcodes are read generating a personal online report so you can check to see exactly what is happening with your mail

Personalised Reporting

You will have a personalised online login from your royal mail business account which will display the status of your mail. You will be able to tell when the predicted delivery date is and if there are any errors with delivery. The predicted delivery Schedule will be based on the delivery option you have chosen. You will be able to see what percentage has been delivered on time, in progress, delivered late, or cannot predict. If there is something that is going to be delivered late, you will be able to inform your customer.

The reporting will also tell you the performance of the mail, if there problems like address quality, incorrectly declared products, or mail that can not go through the machine you will see when and if problems occur, so you can work with your Royal Mail representative and rectify any errors.

Every day you will get a new report with the mail sent, so you can log
on at 10am the following day to view the status of the mail sent the previous day to know what is expected to arrive that day. The reports are updated and live for a further 5 days and then they will be filed in historic reports for up tp 90 days. Every mail campaign can be named independently to help you keep track of batches of mail according to different departments or marketing campaigns. This allows for follow-up to be made accurately on time giving a higher level of customer response.

Mail mark allows for real-time updates giving you a greater control over your mail. You will be able to avoid any surcharges related underpayment in postage fees. Since every ítem of mail is accounted for, you will be able to see if any ítems have been incorrectly paid for and only pay for the difference in price from what has been paid and what should have been paid. If there is an item of mail that has had a processing error or a delay, it is possible to see exactly where this ítem is in order to find out where the problem is occurring. This means you can provide better customer service to the recipients of your mail and view if there have been any errors in the mail consignment.

The old style franking machine barcode will be withdrawn officially after January 2018. In the meantime there is a 2.5% – 4% difference in postage Price between Smart franking and mail mark franking until the transition has occured, encouraging all new customers to make the transition to the Mail mark system. You need to ensure your franking machine complies with the Mailmark franking system. Most brands now do comply, but it is definitely worth asking the question before any new contract or purchase is taken out.

Mail mark franking holds a wealth of benefits if your business sends any kind of mail, from e-commerce products to invoices, brochures or special promotions, mail mark is the perfect in-house postal solution. There is no minimum quantity required by Royal Mail to participate, so even small businesses can enjoy the next level reporting from Royal mail. All that is needed is a franking machine to print the 2d barcodes. You will need to set up an account with Royal Mail, but this is relatively straight forward and your customer representative can guide you through the setup process.

Using a mail mark franking machine gives your business the opportunity to keep in touch with your customers within the UK and internationally, whatever the size of your company, franking is perfect for small businesses, government corporations right through to schools or sole traders.

A franking machine will enable you achieve the lowest possible price for your postage costs for your business with a significant saving on every item sent. In fact, with just sending 5-6 items daily the savings acquired through cheaper postage will outway any costs the machine has plus you get to enjoy all the other benefits owning a franking machine has.

Savings

 

First Class Savings.

FormatWeightStamp PricesFrank PricesMailmark Prices
Letter0-100g65p57p55p
Large Letter0-100g98p90p85p
101-250g£1.30£1.24£1.19
251 – 500g£1.74£1.64£1.58
501 – 750g£2.52£2.30£2.23
Small Parcel0 – 1 Kg£3.40£3.12£3.12
1 – 2 Kg£5.50£5.22£5.22
Medium Parcel0 – 1 Kg£5.70£4.87£4.87
2 – 5 Kg£15.85£15.85£15.85
5 – 10 Kg£21.90£21.90£21.90

Second Class Savings

FormatWeightStamp PricesFrank PricesMailmark Prices
Letter0-100g56p41p38p
Large Letter0-100g76p68p65p
101-250g£1.2296p91p
251-500g£1.58£1.26£1.22
501-750g£2.14£1.76£1.72
Small Parcel0-1kg£2.90£2.62£2.62
1-2kg£2.90£2.62£2.62
2-5kg£13.75£13.75£13.75
5-10kg£20.25£20.25£20.25

It is easy to upload credit to the machine via phone, or online and you can easily keep track of your spends via the online system that can also be managed per department or assignment. All of your postage spend will be available in one invoice making accounting so much easier. If you are from an educational organisation and can claim the VAT back on your postage the accounting invoice detail exactly the VAT paid on postage payments in an easy printable format that can be used in accounts to claim back the VAT.

All machines come with different account codes so you can allocate each department with its own budget. You can view in real-time and easy-to-read formats postage costs by class and format. Data can be used to identify areas where postage costs can be saved for example with use of first class or special delivery services. Postage data is broken down into postage class, letter format, weight and location.

Choosing the right franking machine for your company goes generally on the volume of post you send. If you send between 5 and 30 letters a day you can go for an entry level machine. These are compact machines that sit on the desk with integrated weighing scales. In order to process a letter you place it in the weighing scales for the postage to be calculated, you then feed the letter through manually to print the franking.

Larger machines include clever functions such as automatic size and weight recognition and an automatic feeder. The larger machines will need a dedicated place in the office. These machines can handle up to 6000 pieces of mail per hour, giving an idication of just how quickly these machines can run. For faster processing an automatic feeder is required, you will be able to Frank in batches, simple put the pile to be franked at one side and the machine takes over the rest, feeding the letters through the machine, automatic weighing and franking and then piling at the other side for collection.

Whatever size machine you go for you will be able to weigh and process your post in seconds. You will also have access for instant top ups of postage; making it so much faster when compared to printing postage online queuing up at the post office. A faster post processing rate means you get more time to focus on the core part of your business and even a late batch of orders can be simply whizzed through the machine ensuring they are dispatched the very same day.

For larger sized post you would need to print on to a franking label, that are self-adhesive, and then affix this to the packet. Although every company has their own franking labels there are always cheaper White Brand alternatives that can help reduce the outgoing postal Budget.

Other costs of franking machines include maintenance and repair of the machine and ink. Every company that rents or sells franking machines has separate maintenance costs, so it is vital to compare these alongside the initial costs. Some rental agreements require the machine to be serviced yearly, but this is advised for continuous trouble-free franking. Just like a printer the franking machine also needs ink, these are available in cartridges that can be replaced. Again every company does their own branded ink, but there are also white labels cartridges that are compatible with the machine. You would need to check your rental agreement to see if the warranty is covered if a non-branded ink cartridge is used.

Benefits

You can enjoy much more than postal saving with your franking machine:

Receive a discount on every letter sent. Save 18p on every second class letter and 13p on every first. In fact, savings are available for every postage size and weight.
Less time spent at the post office – you can have your postage picked up from your home or office.
Quickly and conveniently buy credits from the comfort of your office. Credits can be purchased easily online or over the phone.
Stop planning your work around trips to the post office by having your postage machine directly in your office.
Automatic postage calculations to ensure accurate postage payments every time. With inbuilt weighing facilities you can easily process the correct cost of every letter. Simply put the letter on the scales and the machine will calculate the postage, it’s that simple.
Clear accounting and managing of finance. Have access to all your top ups and daily spending so you have clear accounts to organise your finances.
Faster postage processing times.
Easy to use and full customer service support. Help 24 hours a day with a competent customer service team.
With the advance date feature you can get some work done ahead of schedule.

Features

Even the basic franking machines come with weighing scales to automatically calculate postal rates, simply put the envelope on the weighing scale to reveal the exact postage. The larger machines will calculate the postage automatically according to weight and size as they are going through the feeder.

All machines have the ability to download the latest postal rates and machine software updates.

You will be able to print your logo and advertising slogan on the envelopes. You can design and upload to the franking machines the specified design to print, for full consumer professionalism and high impact marketing. The larger machines offer pre-loading of numerous logos and some full colour printing.

Most machines come with a choice of department accounting, so you can split your accounts according to departments. Higher machines offer a fully centralized accounting system. Top-ups are easily managed by phone or on-line so you don’t have to worry about running out of credit.

Some models include special features such as clever apps to help with your postage management and service. There is also the choice of automatic label dispensers and envelope opening and sealing. There are some that include alerts if your ink is running low.

Buying and renting

The two options for owning a franking machine are buying or renting, each has its advantages and disadvantages.

Buying

When you purchase the machine you own it outright and own the machine as an asset; therefore you can claim it as a capital allowance for the purposes of tax. You will not have any contracts to adhere to which can be constricting. Usually, you will pay less in the long term than you would when compared to renting the machine. You usually can sell the machine as other businesses are looking for second-hand options.

Cons

Since a large payment is made upfront this will reduce your cash flow. If the equipment needs repair and is not under guarantee or have a maintenance agreement you will need to pay for the full cost of the repair which may be an unaccounted cost and can be expensive. It might be harder to change the machine if you decide you want a different make or model as your business changes.

Renting

When renting a machine you have a flat monthly outgoing fee to pay that usually also includes maintenance. You won’t actually own the machine a the end of the renting term which is not as bad as it seems as usually when a contract comes to an end the machine is due for an upgrade anyway and starting a new contract will then give a newer model. You will be tied into a contract which can last for anything up to 5 years and if you wanted to terminate the contract early there may be a penalty to pay. Quite often the supplier includes the maintenance of the machine in the monthly cost, so you will have no unexpected bills if the machine breaks down. Generally, if you send 5-10 letters per day and are looking for a smaller machine renting is a good option. There are even offers to try the machine for 30 days free of charge, to see if it is right for your business.

Additional costs

There are extra charges to take into account that go towards the total cost of ownership. Just like a printer, the machine will need ink, and if you are on a rental contract the manufacturer may insist on using their branded ink cartridges which are more pricey than a white label. Maintenance of the machine is something to take into consideration as this is usually an additional charge. Look to see is the maintenance contract includes machine servicing and if the machine breaks down you need to know if you will get an immediate replacement so you are not left without a machine. Check also to see if the company charges for postal charge updates and top ups of the machine. To calculate the total cost of ownership you need to take into account the purchase price plus all the additional costs less the amount you would save on postage, it will help you to decide the overall savings you could achieve for your company.

Finding a supplier

A franking machine supplier needs to be Royal Mail approved in order to supply a franking machine. We compare three of the main Royal Mail approved companies for you, Pitney Bowes, FPand Frama. Simply fill out the quotation form with your details and we’ll do the rest, saving you time and money.

A franking machine goes much further than saving money for your business. It offers a quicker, more efficient and professional way to do your post. It is important to buy a quality machine that will keep up with the needs of your business and be able to grow with you.

Bob, Coventry

Bob, Coventry

Business Owner

"Many thanks for your help! I received quotes almost instantly and got a great deal on a new franking machine."

Scott, Leicester

Scott, Leicester

Freelancer

"We were looking for a new franking machine for our business, so completed the quote form and received 3 quotes straight away."

Javier, London

Javier, London

Entrepreneur

"After filling the form I received 3 quotations which helped me make a decision for my company"

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