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Franking machine: Franking prices: why there’s more to the story than Royal Mail discounts

Reading time: 3 mins

When studying the opportunity of equipping one’s business with a franking device, one must consider that for the global cost of a franking machine (i.e.: price of the device, different service or maintenance costs, franking costs), there are not one, but three sources of value.

First, franking machines allow you to benefit from specific discounts in mailing rates (detailed in the second part of this article).

Second, it ensures you will always pay the right price for your mailing expenses.

Third, these machines represent an immaterial, but valuable asset: a franking machine will bring you time, efficiency, and even marketing opportunities.

Franking prices

Franking VS Stamp

  • Significant discounts on franking prices from Royal Mail

Franking prices represent the most commonly advertised benefit of franking devices, and for a good reason:  they do represent a substantial discount compared to the usual price range of Royal mail stamps. So if your business does send letters or parcels, setting up a franking machine is simply a logical step in rationalizing your costs.

  • Avoiding pricing mistakes

Furthermore, the financial edge offered by franking machines also lies in their ability to register the accurate postage rate , matching the actual weight and dimensions of your mail – a frequent source of small mistakes, but, alas, accumulating mistakes. Your internal auditor will be able to proudly declare: “the price is right”.

  • Side benefits

An interesting side benefit of franking machines is that it provides you with a customizable marketing tool, transforming every envelope or parcel in a marketing platform – for the same cost. Even with the expansion of webprinting companies, the cost of customized stationery is still substantial. Using neutral stationery and customizing it through the options offered by your franking machine represents a much more affordable option. The machine allows you to design and include a customized franking mark including your company name and logo, but also your return address; it will provide your mailings with a strong professional, recognizable look and improve your brand’s perceived value.

Savings estimates with franking prices

  • Letters

The largest discount that comes with franking is quite logically the discounts applicable to the most common type of mail. For normal letters up to 100g, you should be able to save from 20 % (1st class) to 26 % (2nd class Frank), i.e at least 11p per letter.

  • Large letters

Depending on weight and franking class, you should be able to save from 15% to 26 % on large letters.

  • Small parcels

If you’re considering franking small parcels, you should know that according to October 2014 Royal Mail prices, franking should save you 30p. per parcel, whatever the class or weight category.

  • Medium parcels

Using franking machines with medium-sized parcels will also be a bargain: you will save from 60 p. to £1.40 depending on the weight and class of your parcel.

Two important factors should be kept in mind:

  • First, don’t forget that franking consummates ink, and it can get quite expensive with small devices - about 1p per franking. However, this should still leave you with comfortable savings per letter or parcel;
  • Second, Royal Mail usually change their rates in March… if you read this article after this point, you should probably check the new rates to update your calculations.