Businesses of all sizes can find postage machines or meters a useful tool. Their primary benefit is to provide security of a costly resource, stamps. The also can make sure that you use your postage efficiently, only putting the amount on each envelope that is needed, without over posting. Over posting even a few cents can lead to hundreds of dollars of unnecessary cost.
So how do you decide what meter to buy? Each of the three vendors in Canada offer a meter that is targeted to small businesses sending only a few letters each day. Typically these meters use an impression method requiring the user to insert the envelope, wait a few seconds while the indicia is printed on the letter and then you manually remove it from the meter. Due to the slowness of this process if you regularly mail a larger number of documents, even 100 at a time, you will find these entry level meters too tedious.
The next step is a manual meter that can pull the letters through the imprint section and which can process a stack of letters as long as the operator manually feeds the stack. These meters offer more efficiency, integrated rating scales, automatic moisteners and often a serious of buttons for frequently used rates. A typical unit of this type is a Francotyp-Postalia Optimail. These meters are less costly to run as well. Doing a stack of 300 or more letters once in awhile will be okay on one of these, but don't plan on doing it weekly or you will wish you took a more efficient unit.
The next step up are meters which are designed with semi-automatic or automatic feeders (learn more about early days of machine processing of mail) so that a stack of mail can be placed on the postage machine and processed without the operator having to hold the stack. These machines will process larger volumes on steady runs and will offer various speed ranges to reflect the throughput needs of your office. An example of this level of machine would be the Ultimail series from FP.
Top end postage machines provide many advanced features and can suit environments where many thousands of envelopes are processed. They can include automatic weighing and sizing of envelopes so mixed product can be efficiently handled. They have output conveyors so mail does not bind up as it is processed. See how this level of mailing is handled with the short Centormail video on this page.
No matter what your mailing volume, there is a mailing meter that can match your need. It is a tool which can make a daily process more efficient, provide security of postage and help you avoid costly postage errors.