When it comes to cutting costs and still giving your customers a reliable mailing experience, Parcel Select is the service for you. Parcel Select is an economical ground delivery service designed primarily for business-to-residential shippers. There are three levels of savings that the Postal Service can pass on to you, depending upon where your packages are inducted: at a bulk mail center (BMC), sectional center facility (SCF) or a destination delivery unit (DDU).


We were looking for an economical service that would keep us competitive and meet customer needs, says Martin Bernstein, Director of Postal Affairs for JCPenney, one of the largest catalog shippers in the country. We found what we needed with Parcel Select. Were getting consistent service, and its saving us money versus the traditional core delivery carriers. Our core carriers now have subsidiary companies that are utilizing Parcel Select. This confirms that Parcel Select is doing a good job. In 2005, JCPenney reported a 22.5% increase in overall operating profit, thanks in part to the use of Parcel Select.


A PRS label designed with a special ZIP Code and barcode helps postal employees identify each return and allows for greater visibility in completing the mailing cycle from the consumer to the shipper.


Not only does Parcel Select leverage the last mile, it also adds value to the first mile. When we talk about the complete mailing experience, we are also referring to some of our exciting returns programs, such as Parcel Return Service (PRS) and Merchandise Return Service (MRS). Customers know all too well the difficulty of returns and are always looking for convenience. Parcel Return Service has made returning merchandise quick and easy for both customers and businesses, taking difficulty out of the equation. A PRS label was designed with a special ZIP Code and barcode that help postal employees identify each return. This allows for greater visibility in completing the mailing cycle from the consumer to the shipper.


Customers know that using this type of returns program cuts trunk time, or the time it takes to notify customers of the return and their credit, down to 48 hours, instead of the former five to seven days. This allows the retailer to better schedule their staff based on return volumes. Parcel Return Service provides merchants and consumers with a convenient, economical solution for returning merchandise. Authorized agents are permitted to pick up PRS items from designated postal facilities, helping to reduce costly processing and transportation expenses. We then pass those savings on to our customers.


PRS Isn't the Only Option...

Customers certainly like convenience when returning merchandise, and another returns option that maximizes convenience is Merchandise Return Service (MRS). A business customer may obtain an annual permit and set up an advance deposit account with the Postal Service, and all return charges will be deducted automatically. With MRS, additional services, such as insurance, mailing acknowledgement, registered mail and special handling may be requested. Using Priority Mail with MRS is also an option which might improve turnaround time for returns, allowing items to be quickly restocked and resold. It's important to note that no matter how many return labels are distributed, you only pay postage on those that are used. So look to the U.S. Postal Service for your complete mailing experience. We'll ship it for you and return it as well. Satisfying your customer needs as well as your business objectives has never been so easy.


For more information on the products and services listed in this article or for additional information on how to improve your companys operations, please visit www.usps.com.


Sidebar: Why Use Parcel Return Service?


Utilizing Parcel Return Service often results in:


Increased customer satisfaction with an easy-to-use return solution.


Reduction in handling costs by knowing how exactly how many returns are

in the network.


Improved turnaround time for reselling returned items.


Built-in-visibility, so call center volumes from customers inquiring about returns will decrease.