What are the Benefits of Using a Franking Machine?

A stack of letters with envelopes of various colours

Benefits of having a franking machine include cutting postage costs, improving office efficiency, easier accounting and better experiences at the post office.

Having a franking machine saves you money on postage costs by giving you access to Royal Mail franking rates, which are 12% cheaper than buying stamps.

Franking machines are the secret cost-saving weapons of the business world. If your company sends post, you should know that you can automate the process, reaping eight key benefits:

1. Save money on postage costs

We all know that money makes the post go round. And with franking machines you could save heaps of cash on your postage spending. Check out our table below showing how much you could save on Royal Mail standard postage by using a franking machine…

Postal charges for letters: compare postage rates
Royal Mail UK deliveryStamp priceFranking priceCost difference
1st Class letter (up to 100g)£0.95£0.8412%
2nd Class letter (up to 100g)£0.68£0.6012%

Royal Mail currently offers a 12% discount for franked mail over stamped mail. By franking your own post, you are saving Royal Mail time and staff resources – hence the price incentive.

2. A professional marketing tool

When you send out franked mail it looks very professional. What’s more, the ink stamp can be tailored and customised to the brand image of your business, so that it has your company logo on it.

The stamp can also contain messages if you have anything to promote, such as your latest deals and discounts. For this reason, using a franking machine has plenty of great marketing benefits for your business.

3. Accurate postage costs

Because most franking machines have a scale built into them, the measured weight will always be accurate. This means the postage cost will always be calculated correctly, which stops any overpayment or underpayment, ensuring your clients will never be put in a position where they have to pay to receive your mail.

4. Improved efficiency

Machines do repetitive tasks much better than humans; automation means the jobs get done quickly and efficiently. Not only do you save your valuable human staff time and effort, but the franking machine will definitely do a better job of applying postage marks consistently. Every day. Without complaining. Ah, now we're talking. 

Without the soul-crushingly boring task of sticking stamps onto 400 envelopes to look forward to each day, staff have time to think creatively and engage with business development: networking, sales calls and broader general customer service. Your business can't help but benefit overall from more dedicated brainpower thanks to machine automation.

Did You Know?

The UK's first commercial franking machine was sold in 1922.

5. Easier accounting

Franking machines keep track of all of your postage costs digitally, making it far easier to keep track of expenses at a granular level. Most machines will provide a printed report whenever you need it.

6. Automatic updates on postage rates

As franking machines are internet-connected, they will download updated postage rates as and when they happen. This adds to the ‘easier accounting' benefit, because nobody has to expend extra brain power trying to work out when to bulk buy stamps, how many are left in the cupboard and when to stock up again.

7. Spend Flexibility

Franking machines can be bought, rented and sold without much restriction. You only need to ensure you have a valid franking license from Royal Mail for the year you're using the machine. This range of options is great news for business budget flexibility.

It can cost as little as £16 per month to rent a franking machine. You've options to buy refurbished, second-hand or order a new one direct from the manufacturer. There are around two dozen trusted third-party franking machine sellers, so you can shop around for the best possible quote.

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8. Priority treatment at the post office

Most of the larger Post Offices have special post boxes for franked mail. Smaller Post Offices will normally have an allocated area in which to drop it off. Royal Mail also provides mail bags and trays to help you to organise your post, at no extra cost.

Comparing Providers

As you can see, there are many advantages to switching to franked mail. However, as with any business purchase, you should always find out all the details concerning the extra costs involved.

How much is the ink? Does the machine need to be serviced regularly? Check out our guide on franking machine costs for answers to these important questions.

If you are thinking about getting a franking machine for your business, the best franking machines will come from licensed suppliers: Pitney Bowes, Quadient, FP Mailing Solutions and Frama.

FAQ

Is it worth getting a franking machine?
If your business regularly sends dozens of letters or parcels every week, or more, then yes it could well be. Having a franking machine saves your company money on every single item of post because it qualifies for reduced costs, which are cheaper than using stamps. You should consider how much time your staff spend weighing and working out postage costs by hand every day, and then look at the cost of getting a franking machine to find out if it's worth if for your particular business.
Why is it cheaper to use a franking machine?
Every business who uses a franking machine will save money on postage costs because their post qualifies for franked rates which are cheaper than stamps. All franking machines measure items of post with precision accuracy and automatically calculate the correct postage cost per letter or parcel. This means you avoid overpaying or underpaying for postage, which are common mistakes among human staff. Because the entire process is automated and digitally recorded as well, you'll avoid accounting headaches when it comes to tracking postage expenses. How often will your executives send a wad of letters out to clients and forget to record the cost of postage? It's so easy to do, but entirely avoided with machine franking. You'll be able to download expenses reports from your machine at any time, perhaps from a remote device depending on the wireless capability of your particular machine.
Sabrina Dougall

Sabrina writes about tech for business as well as consumer software. She covers topics ranging from digital marketing to ecommerce fulfilment, security systems, franking machines, and more. Having run her own successful small business, Sabrina knows first-hand how much there is to keep on top of. Writing with your company’s needs in mind, she distils truly useful product information (without the sales pitch).