This week, I learned a thing or two about saving money on postage. In the past, I have been fairly lazy when it comes to shipping items – I am known for taking items to my local mailbox store and having them packaged and sent via UPS or Fed Ex. It's particularly bad at Christmas, when my time crunch allows me to mentally justify paying an overinflated price for a cardboard box and some packing peanuts.
This week, however, I have vowed to change my wasteful ways. The precipitous event was a mailing of twelve books that were donated by a publisher for a giveaway on one of my websites. I took them to a postal store yesterday and was informed that it would cost me $7.95 to mail each of the books to the twelve winners. The lady behind the counter also kindly advised me to check the price for "media mail" through the USPS. A visit to the Post Office today confirmed her kindness – the media mail price per book was only $2.13. She had saved me a ton of money.
Sometimes, convenience justifies paying a little more for goods and services. But in most instances, a little planning and forethought should allow for sufficient time to seek out the best price and alternative. Now that I know the ins and outs of what qualifies as "media mail", I will be taking advantage of the service. I also committed today to do my holiday shopping early enough that mailing my gifts does not end up costing me more than I paid for them. So expect to hear me talking about Christmas shopping in November!
Whether it's running a small business or running a family, every little bit of savings counts towards helping with the bottom line.