Incorporating a SCAN form streamlines both the shipping process and customer service. When scanned, your buyer is notified that their package has entered the USPS mail stream. This doesn’t always happen with Delivery Confirmation or USPS Tracking options only. With delivery speed and experience being top reasons a customer makes future purchases, USPS SCAN forms may be worth researching. There are many benefits of USPS SCAN forms, but first let’s talk about what the SCAN form is.
What is the USPS SCAN Form?
SCAN is an acronym for Shipment Confirmation Acceptance Notice. The USPS SCAN form (PS Form 5630) is basically a master barcode. When used, the USPS employee scans the master barcode which creates tracking information for each package included in the shipment. If the SCAN form isn’t used, each individual package has to be scanned.
How Does the USPS SCAN Form Work?
Using a SCAN form is very easy. After you’ve printed shipping labels for all packages for the day, just print the form, using an online postage provider like Stamps.com. Then, you can either take it to the local post office or have a mail carrier pick it up. An employee will scan the master barcode and your shipments will be visible on the USPS’s website in the Track and Confirm section.
What Are the Benefits of Using the USPS SCAN Form?
The SCAN form is a great time-saver for Post Office employees because it eliminates the need for scanning each individual package in a shipment. But it also cuts down on the number of steps for ecommerce retailers like you. Here are some of the benefits of USPS Scan forms you can expect to enjoy:
- Worldwide Shipping – You can use the SCAN form for domestic and international shipments – on the same form.
- Shipping Confirmation – Both you and your buyers will receive shipping confirmation when their packages enter the mail stream.
- Shipments Show “Acceptance” – Online shoppers like to know exactly when their items ship and when they will receive them. When packages are shipped without the SCAN form, a tracking number is generated, but the package doesn’t enter into the mail stream until the mail carrier gets it back to the post office for processing. When you use the SCAN form, shipments will immediately be marked “Acceptance” showing buyers their products are on the way.
- Happy Mail Carrier – It’s pretty obvious that scanning a bunch of individual packages can be tedious and time-consuming for mail carriers. If you typically schedule a pickup for shipments, your mail carrier will only have to perform one scan for all packages with the USPS SCAN form. Not only does this make his or her work day easier, but a happy mail carrier is a good resource for ecommerce sellers like you. There will likely be a time when you need some extra help or attention with a shipping-related issue. Someone who is happy with your daily business is much more likely to help.
- No Lines at the Post Office – The USPS SCAN form means no more standing in line at the post office. You can drop off your shipment at the post office’s back dock, where an employee can quickly and easily scan the form and accept shipment.
What are the Restrictions for Using the USPS SCAN Form?
There are a few restrictions you should be aware of regarding the USPS SCAN form:
- All packages on the USPS SCAN Form must be for items being shipped by the USPS only.
- All packages need to have the same mailing date and must be mailed on that actual date. Do not print the form unless you intend to use it that day.
- Similarly, all packages listed on a SCAN Form must be mailed from the same ZIP Code.
- If you use an online postage service like Stamps.com, you can’t add an item to the USPS SCAN Form if it has already been associated with another form.
- Make sure all packages associated with the USPS SCAN Form also have tracking numbers for electronic Delivery Confirmation or electronic Signature Confirmation; any without those require separate processing.
Using the USPS SCAN form makes shipping easy. Even if you only ship a handful of packages each day, it will save you and post office employees time. Plus, as your business grows, SCAN forms will only make life easier. If you have questions about the SCAN form process, ask your local post office or let us know in the comments below.
To make fulfillment even easier, our ecommerce shipping software gives you the ability to print SCAN forms in your ecomdash account without having to log in anywhere else.