Etsy has made it possible for crafters worldwide to monetize their hobbies in an international marketplace. Of course, one of the most significant factors for any e-commerce small business owner to consider is shipping. And the most affordable shipper domestically is USPS.
But does Etsy use USPS on its site for sellers, or must you use a different shipper? If you’re a seller, you need to know the answer to this question, and I’ve got it just below!
Does Etsy Use USPS In [currentyear]?
Craft and handmade marketplace Etsy partners with the United States Postal Service, offering discounted shipping rates, label creation, printing, and even package pickup services for US-based sellers in [currentyear]. Etsy sellers receive up to 30% off retail prices, which makes it easier for sellers to offer attractive free shipping on items.
To learn more about how USPS and Etsy interact on the latter’s website, how much of a discount you can expect using USPS on Etsy, and the answers to many more questions, keep reading!
What Is USPS On Etsy?
The United States Postal Service has partnered with Etsy to make some of its most popular products and services available on the Etsy website for sellers.
For example, sellers can create and purchase postage without leaving the Etsy site or even your account page.
Even better, sellers can arrange for a package pickup from their front door for some mail classes, limiting the number of trips to the post office.
On top of that, Premium services that allow for package pickup include:
The First-Class service is the Postal Service’s cheapest and slowest mail class, with an estimated window of two to ten days.
Also, First-Class is perfect for small, no-rush shipments of 13 ounces or less.
First-Class International & First-Class Package International
Like the domestic version, this is a slower but affordable international shipping option.
Priority Mail (& International)
Domestic Priority Mail shipments have a window of one to three days; International is six to ten.
With that, Priority Mail shipments are based on weight and distance (Zoned pricing), but Flat Rate shipping is great for longer distances and heavier items.
Additionally, Flat Rate boxes are available for free, both in post offices and online.
That’s right; you can place a free order for boxes on USPS.com and have them delivered (generally by your mail carrier) at no cost to you.
Priority Mail Express (& International)
These are the fastest domestic (and second-fastest international) shipping classes USPS offers.
That said, the former comes with a window of the next-day or two-day, while the latter (international) takes three to five business days.
Also, this is the most expensive shipping option, and there are no Flat Rate Boxes – only envelopes.
Still, both shipping methods come with a money-back guarantee (though only for certain destinations for International).
Additionally, the non-premium shipping classes include:
- First-Class Letter & Flat: This is slow shipping for business-size envelopes and larger rectangular mailpieces (still relatively flat, hence the name).
- Media Mail: Slower, no-rush shipping for media items, like books, DVDs and CDs, etc.
- Parcel Select: An online retailer-only shipping class that is slower (two to eight days) but steeply discounted compared to Priority Mail, especially for heavier items going far.
Further, USPS tracking is included with all of these mail classes, even First-Class Letter and Flat, which is significant as USPS doesn’t sell a tracking add-on for First-Class Letter and Flat.
With that, you can only get it added on to these mail classes through being a seller with Etsy.
On top of that, Priority Mail and Priority Mail Express offer included insurance coverage, up to $50 and $100, respectively.
And of course, by being an Esty seller, you have access to discounted rates, thanks to the benefit of high-volume shipping negotiations.
Is Etsy Shipping Cheaper Than USPS?
Etsy shipping is cheaper than USPS, thanks to the lower rates negotiated by the crafting/homemade marketplace.
That said, Etsy can do this because of the sheer volume of orders its sellers provide to USPS.
Also, the discounts are up to 30% lower than what you’d pay at the post office.
However, it is essential to note that as USPS prices rise, so must the rates Etsy sellers can access. Still, they’re discounted but must increase in tandem.
How Does USPS Pickup Work On Etsy?
In 2020 Etsy added a “Request Pickup” feature in its Etsy Shipping Labels center so that sellers don’t even have to leave home to ship their orders.
That said, this is a feature that USPS offers on its site, so it’s simply an extension of that program and a courtesy to Etsy sellers.
Therefore, you can complete this action by going to “Shop Manager,” “Orders & Shipping,” and, lastly, “Completed.”
After these steps, there will be a “Request a pickup” tab to press; on the next screen, enter the pickup address and your phone number.
You can add additional notes, like where the package will be located (e.g., if you hide it behind something so as not to invite porch pirates).
Then, press “Request pickup,” and you’re all done. For more on this process, as well as canceling a pickup, check out this page.
Can You Ship Etsy Orders In Envelopes?
If your Etsy product will fit in an envelope and weighs less than one ounce, you can absolutely ship it in a normal First-Class letter envelope and use regular postage.
However, by using your typical stamp, you won’t be able to get tracking on the order. If you want tracking information, it’s best to order the postage through the Etsy Shipping Labels center.
Etsy sellers can take advantage of USPS’s already affordable rates, made even more so by the up-to-30% discount on postage offered through Etsy Shipping Labels.
By using Etsy shipping labels to print and buy postage, sellers can offer their customers tracking – even on First-Class letter mail where it normally can’t be added on.