Mailing FAQ

Q: Can anyone use your Mailing Services?

A: Our Mailing Services are available exclusively to customers who place a print order with Modern.

Q: What is included in the Mailing Services base price?

A: For one low price, we've included all the services needed to mail your cards. Every job comes with:

  • Processing for a single mailing list file (charges may apply for additional lists/files)
  • DPV/CASS certification to standardize addresses, which is required to make your mailing eligible for postage discounts.
  • FREE removal of up to 100 duplicate records
  • FREE NCOALink® processing.
  • FREE drop shipping analysis.
  • High-quality UV inkjet addressing  and barcoding
  • On-site USPS verification and delivery to the Post Office
Q: What is the turnaround time for mailing my cards?

A: Regular turnaround time is 6 days from graphics final approval, or as soon as 3 days with our expedite services. Your list will need to be in house at least four days prior to your desired mail date. Please click here for more information.

Q: I will be mailing less than 500 cards. How does this affect my cost?

First Class mailings of less than 500 cards do not qualify for any presort discounts. These mailings are priced at the actual full First Class Postage Plus(SM) in addition to our Mailing Services fee. If you are mailing Standard, you can take advantage of postage presort discounts down to 200 cards. Please note that mailings of less than 200 pieces requires hand-stamping. Additional fees may apply. Contact our Customer Care department at 800.959.8365 x6205 for details.

Q: What happens if I don't mail all of my cards?

A: Once we have completed your mailing, any remaining cards will be shipped to you via UPS Ground shipping. The cost for shipping these cards will appear on your Mailing Services Invoice. Sales tax will be charged for extras returned to California customers.

Q: Can Modern Postcard mail my Canadian and International records?

A: Absolutely! Many of our customers take advantage of this service, and we can mail any quantity you desire to any country. Here are a couple of things to consider when planning for the International and Canadian portion of your mailing:

  1. Please submit these records in a separate data file or have separate fields for the Province, Zip Code and Country fields. If they are not submitted separately, or if the fields are not labeled correctly in a single list, our processing system will not be able to accurately identify the international and Canadian records. As a result, they will drop out as bad records during processing and not be mailed.
  1. International and Canadian postage is priced separately. Please contact your Direct Marketing Specialist for more details.
  2. Please allow two, to three weeks for delivery to international locations, due to the crossing of the borders. Additionally, these records will not go through an additional verification process and will be inkjetted as submitted.
  3. Modern Postcard partners with a third party vendor who picks up our International and Canadian mail twice per week.
Q: Do you offer services to update my addresses for people that have moved?

A: Yes. We offer a FREE NCOALink® service which takes your mailing list and compares it to the USPS database of registered moves for the past FOUR years. If this finds any moves, it will apply them back to your mailing and we will also send you back a list of these moves so that you can update your house database. Please click here for more information about the USPS policy regarding moves and updated addresses, as well as how we help you achieve maximum deliverability.

Q: What is DPV/CASS?

A:  DPV (Delivery Point Verification) and CASS (Coding Accuracy Support System) is the system the USPS uses to define the deliverability of a particular address. The CASS system will define that a range of addresses that the particular address falls into is accurate (100-500 Main Street for example). DPV then will determine if that particular address (365 Main Street) is a valid, mailable address. Addresses that pass DPV/CASS are available for postage discounts because the deliverability can be automated by the USPS. Those that don't, "single pieces", will pay a higher postage rate because the USPS is unable to determine the accuracy of the mailing addresses, leaving it up to the individual carrier to get the piece there - if it can be delivered at all.

Q: How does Modern Postcard deal with "single pieces", or non-DPV/CASS records?

A:  A "single piece" is a record in your mailing list that has a valid state and zip code, but the USPS database does not fully recognize the address. An example would be 102 Main Street San Diego, CA 92008 (but the USPS database only has a 101 and 103, but no 102). Because the USPS cannot guarantee that this 102 Main Street address exists, they charge those pieces at full first class postage and do not guarantee deliverability because they do not have that address in their database. Modern Postcard's policy is to mail these records as is. If you would like to request the removal of those records or to review them in advance, please let us know when you're placing your order.

Q: I did NCOALink® and I am still getting returns? Why?

A:  Great question! NCOALink® compares your list against the complete database of USPS moves and updates only those that match. If they don't match, then your list record mails as is. This database is for moves only; it cannot and does not correct addresses that aren't complete (i.e. missing suite #) or that are invalid. Even with NCOA, undeliverable pieces are likely if people don't register moves, or if the database hasn't been updated since their move. It can also occur if an address is just invalid, as well as a variety of other reasons. We recommend that you use the information contained on the returned piece to determine the cause and take corrective action, either removing them from future mailings or calling and attempting to get the full or correct address.

Q: What is "drop shipping"?

A:  Drop shipping is a form of "work sharing" with the USPS in which the mailer delivers the mail at their expense to a postal facility closer to the destination. The further downstream the mail is entered into the mail system by the mailer, the greater the postage discount. This is accomplished by drop shipping the mail through the use of common carrier transportation. Not all mailings qualify for drop shipping. The discounts you would get must outweigh the shipping charges to get the mail there. Dropping shipping applies to standard mail only.

Q: How do I determine the Mailing Services cost for my job?

A: You can calculate your approximate cost based on our pricing schedules which show a per piece cost. However, your final Mailing Services charges depend on the actual number of your cards that we will be mailing. This count can only be determined after we've processed your mailing list. Since this processing includes the removal of duplicate records and those with invalid addresses or Zip Codes, this count is usually less than the number of addresses originally submitted. Please contact your Direct Marketing Specialist for further information.

Q: How do I pay for Mailing Services?

A: There are two ways. When you receive the Final Approval for the print portion of your order, you will have the ability to approve a "not-to-exceed" amount for the mailing costs. This is based on an estimated charge and Modern Postcard would automatically finalize the invoice for any fees that fall under the approved amount once the list has been processed. The other method is that once we have your final list count, we will send you a Mailing Services Invoice for your approval.

Payment can be made by check, money order, or credit card. We accept MasterCard, Visa and American Express. Payment must be received in full at least one business day prior to mailing date. Please be sure to call or email if you have any questions.

Q: Can Modern Postcard inkjet accents and special characters from my mailing list onto my cards?

A: Yes, with a "but". Currently, our postal software does not allow us to accurately reproduce accents and other special characters from your mailing list onto your cards during inkjetting. They will often drop out or be replaced by a wingding. However, if these accents / special characters are critical to your addressing, we can produce labels through a separate process. So, instead of inkjetting your address information, we will print and hand apply labels. Additional fees will apply for this service. Please call your account representative for more information.

Modern Postcard is very easy to work with and provides beautiful products.
Bethany Frasco
Development Associates