I’m embarrassed to tell you this, but…

When I first started selling online, I used to visit the post office every time I had a package to mail. It’s pretty embarrassing, I know. I thought I was being all cutting-edge by using the 24-hour self-service machine whenever I didn’t have international mail, and when I did… I was in-line at the post office for unreasonable amounts of time.

Luckily (which is one way to look at it, I suppose), I wasn’t selling as often, so I only had to visit the post office a couple of times a week. But when I DID start selling more, the daily visits on my way home from work (which sometimes took as long as an HOUR) started to get ridiculous. Finally, I decided to try to figure out PayPal shipping for my domestic packages. I was soooooo glad I did.

postage scale

Of course, that still left trips to the post office for international packages. That is, until Etsy started to offer shipping label options. (If you are hesitating on whether or not to use Etsy shipping labels, I implore you to give them a chance. They are SUCH a time-saver!)

Now, I never have to step FOOT in a post office. Which is a ginormous relief this time of the year, when the lines tend to be eight THOUSAND miles long, and everyone in them has taken an extra dose of cranky for the day.

shipping

But you ask, what about my non-business related shipping? That package that needs to be sent to cousin Bob in Alaska, or that wedding present for Aunt Susie? That’s easy too! As long as you have a postage scale (I picked up a cheap one from Amazon), and a home printer, you’re good to go! Simply head over to paypal.com/shipnow, and type in the name and address you wish to send your package to. Print, and tape the label to your package – and you’re done! If the package is small enough, you can slip it inside your mailbox for your carrier to pick up, or, if it is over-sized, you get to experience the joy of simply dropping off your package at the post office, passing by those long lines of miserable people who don’t know any better.

One more dreaded holiday problem > SOLVED.

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15 thoughts on “I’m embarrassed to tell you this, but…

  1. Nelson Jewelry & Gemstones December 13, 2012 at 7:24 am Reply

    I’ve sold books on Amazon since 2000, and I use Dazzle software by Endicia. Love it.

    I get a small discount on postage, and insurance through U-PIC costs less than the PO. The software barcodes every package, so if the packages have been scanned, the Dazzle website will show you where they are even without delivery confirmation. I can even use stealth mode where the postage amount doesn’t show on the label.

    If I am mailing several packages, I can print out a scan form so the postal clerk has to scan only the form and not all the packages. And if I have one priority mail package, I can request a next-day pickup while creating my scan form and instruct the carrier to ring my bell for pickup.

    • MegansBeadedDesigns December 13, 2012 at 8:14 am Reply

      That sounds liek a great program! I know that PayPal offer batch shipping labels, but I haven’t used that feature before, so I’m not sure if it the same thing.

      I can tell you, however, that both Etsy and PayPal shipping labels are offered at a discounted rate (cheaper than the post office) and include free tracking on First Class mail, as well as free delivery confirmation on Priority mail.

      Either way, shipping from the home computer is soooo much better than waiting in line at the post office!

      • Nelson Jewelry & Gemstones December 13, 2012 at 8:20 am Reply

        I think anytime you use online postage you get a discounted rate and free DC with first class/priority mail.

        Yes, shipping from home rocks! Standing in line, not so much. :)

  2. catseatdogs Makes and Bakes December 13, 2012 at 8:06 am Reply

    Thanks for the tips! I love your sidebar of books too.

  3. sueswordfitlyspoken December 13, 2012 at 8:08 am Reply

    I’m going to have to check that out. Sometimes I want to ship parcel post and the on line USPS won’t give you a label for that. Thanks!

  4. madamesaslow December 13, 2012 at 10:10 am Reply

    I LOVE printing shipping labels at home. With my nice white uline bubble mailers and the crisp printed label (I used to write them by hand) I think I look a lot more professional. I don’t even have to drop by the post office, if I need to talk to a person I have an AIM shipping place around the corner. It’s never busy.

    • MegansBeadedDesigns December 13, 2012 at 11:47 am Reply

      Look at us, all business-y with our professional labels! lol :-)

  5. homegrownjoy December 13, 2012 at 10:55 am Reply

    After my first hour long wait at the post office I immediately went home and bought a postage scale. This week I got my first international order and Etsy shipping labels are AMAZING!

    Perfect timing on this post :) Before I started selling online, I had no idea how busy the post office really gets around the holidays.

    • MegansBeadedDesigns December 13, 2012 at 11:48 am Reply

      Right?!? As soon as I heard they would be doing international postage I was ECSTATIC!

  6. amandajocrafts December 13, 2012 at 10:58 am Reply

    A postal scale was one of the best investments for my Etsy business EVER. Oh my goodness, I can’t even believe I used to go to the post office!
    And you’re right, now with being able to ship international through Etsy….heaven!

    • MegansBeadedDesigns December 13, 2012 at 11:48 am Reply

      I know, I can’t believe I waited as long as I did to order one!

  7. Kim @2justByou December 15, 2012 at 1:24 am Reply

    OMG, the international shipping labels through Etsy are awesome! Don’t have to fill out the customs form, because it’s all done for you. I’m with you…No more stepping foot (and waiting in line) in the post office! Yay! I can schedule package pickup, or if I know I’ll need to have a little bit more time, I just go and drop off (still no waiting!). =0) It’s a great thing!

    • MegansBeadedDesigns December 15, 2012 at 12:44 pm Reply

      I know! A lot of my orders are international, so I was SO HAPPY when Etsy stared to offer printable postage for those packages!

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