Royal Mail price increases for 6th April 2009

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Royal Mail have announced their tariff changes to take place in April next year, with the cost of a 1st class stamp rising from 36p to 39p. The cost of a 2nd class letter rises from 27p to 30p.

What’s probably of more interest to eBay sellers is the cost of a typical packet, which for 251-500g rises from £1.94 to £2.14. If you use Recorded Delivery to qualify for PayPal seller protection, the additional cost rises from 72p to 75p. This means the cost of a typical eBay delivery rises by 23p, an increase of 8.65%.

This increase will doubtless be passed on to buyers, the big question is will sellers increase their postage costs or hide increases in the item price. With pressure from eBay to keep postage prices keen and doubtless next year incentives to offer free post it’s a hefty price increase. 23p might not sound much on an individual item, but multiply it by many thousand transactions over the course of a year and it’s a fair chunk of money.

Alternative solutions such as Royal Mail Tracked may become even more attractive for larger sellers as they look for ways to save on postage cost. Although the service is a 2 to 3 day delivery time savings may justify a slightly slower service, although in truth even 1st class doesn’t always guarantee a next day delivery.

The next year is likely to be one where eBay and sellers focus on postage and packaging costs. If you’re not reviewed your delivery methods the new year is a great time to take a long hard look at them and explore the most cost efficient methods for the year ahead.

You can view all of the Royal Mail tariffs from 6th April 2009 in this .pdf document.

18 Responses

  1. This postage increase won’t have any effect at all. Isn’t postage FREE, or so ebay would try and have you believe. As a high volume DVD seller, this price increase makes the selling of DVDs on ebay even less attractive. Of course any increase in the price of an item to cover the extra cost will have a knock effect for greedy ebay, who will be creaming off their percentage. With this price increase Free postage is going to be even more expensive than a fixed tariff, particularly so if a buyer make a multiple purchase. There is no postal discount on FREE

  2. Large letter 61p = +17.3% !!!!

    Silver lining is that if you use stamps, and then buy all the large letter 1st class that you can afford prior to 6/4, you can use on all your International Mailings and Special Deliveries as 61p. You could actually REDUCE your stamp costs.

  3. in general we have no problems with the royal mail , though
    the signed for service is abysmal. hit and miss at best. it often goes missing , the tracking is a joke, we wonder where to all this missing items go to when not delivered ,when they have a return address ,they should make it back to the sender? but ours never seem to they just vanish without trace,
    yet they have a bar code, surely in todays digital age, it should be possible to at least know where they are!

  4. #5 Same experience as you with Recorded Delivery.

    More of those go mising than packages sent standard first class. Probably because Joe Postman thinks there’s something of value if it’s sent recorded and is worth stealing. So we hardly ever bother.

    And there is no tracking so why do Royal Mail waste money printing those huge labels covered in barcodes which don’t get used at all? If you doubt this pick up a label in your Post Office next time you’re in and then ring Royal Mail to ask where the package is with the reference from the label you have in your hand. They won’t even have a clue it’s never even been posted.

    Finally, if you send over 5000 packages a year you should be looking at PPI from Royal Mail because your mail costs would actually go down in April if you switched to it. Prices are on the same document with new prices from Royal Mail. Look for Packetpost.

  5. #6 “pick up a label in your Post Office next time you’re in and then ring Royal Mail to ask where the package is with the reference from the label you have in your hand. They won’t even have a clue it’s never even been posted.”

    That’s no longer strictly true, all items are scanned at the point of posting now, and very soon the Royal Mail CS staff will be able to tell the last point at which an item was scanned. Also posties will in the near future have scanners at the point of delivery. They’re improving the service enormously 😀

  6. A fair number of recorded items that I send never get logged at any point. It goes in the sack with the rest of my post. It doesn’t get scanned in at the local sorting office and often doesn’t get signed for (or the signatures/barcodes aren’t being scanned after delivery).

  7. all my items are not scanned
    signed for is treated as everyday regular mail until point of delivery
    then it may get a sinature and then scanned if the postman can be bothered
    otherwise it roams the system saying nick me I am worth it

  8. my postie stands and swears at the scanner as if its someing beamed down from the star ship enterprise
    the stupid bugger once stood there for 5 minutes trying to scan in the barcode on the cn22 form

  9. Jeez large letter goes from 52p to 61p and 78p to 90p. That’s quite a lot on small cheap items. No doubt Joe Public will complain and mark our DSRs down as all they ever read about is the cost of “first and second class” and they have no idea how much more the large letters cost to post.

  10. Im going to look more into ‘ Royal Mail Tracked’…

    On one of our eBay accounts everything has to go out by Royal Mail

  11. #7 Ok Chris. Try it. We despatch directly through our sorting office and nothing is scanned when we drop off our mail in sealed bags.

    The only way you get anything tracked is with Special Delivery or the new Tracked delivery service. Recorded is nothing but a waste of time.

  12. It’s worth noting that the compensation levels with Royal Mail tracked are the same as Recorded Delivery and takes longer than 1st or even second class mail.

  13. its also worth noting that the compensation does not cover anything of value
    so what is the point of signed for?
    other than a tax on your paranoia

  14. #14 Yes, but it is actually tracked so the ‘where is my package’ emails get easier to manage. The price will be cheaper when compared to First Class Recorded Delivery for items weighing anything over 250g even using PPI from April.

    BT Broadband are using the service to send out routers so there must be ways of negotiating the compensation levels. And I suppose if it’s completely tracked there’s less likelihood of it going missing in the first place.

  15. to be honest
    “where is my package emails”
    only seem to happen with tracked and recorded
    the bog standard mail seems to get there with no problems at all,
    so more tracking might be worse rather than better

  16. NO signature on delivery so not sure how Paypal will treat it as far as INR claims are concerned. The price is fixed at the start of your contract with Royal Mail and adjusted every 3 months based on actual usage. They will not discuss alternative comp levels.

    We use it and it’s good, but not for everyone.


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