Practical Real-World Applications for Mail Tracking
May 30, 2024   Dave Lewis

Ask me about the benefits of mail tracking – go ahead, ask me. We can do it in an elevator if you want, because those benefits get hard coded in my mind after all these years  – it’s my elevator pitch…or at least one of them.

But I prefer more specific real-life applications – where mail tracking can really add value to the mail. Here’s some of the ways we see it used by different business verticals:


  • Call center staffing:  This is a big deal for large charities – when they send out millions of pieces they expect a lot of calls, and having call centers staffed on the right days, just as the mail is being delivered can avoid wasting staff hours and provide good service to donors.  With outbound tracking they can see how many pieces are delivered every day and be ready.
  • Caging operations:  We have seen a couple of valuable applications here, using both outbound and inbound tracking. Just as with a call center, staffing caging operations can vary with volume. Outbound tracking can give a good idea of when donations will begin coming in, and inbound tracking is even more precise. 
  • Verifying that inbound mail is getting through:  We’ve seen this more than we’d like to – our inbound tracking shows a much bigger number than those coming from caging. In almost every case, this means that the Postal Service is holding up the reply mail.  It happens a lot on BRM. Sometimes it just takes too long for USPS to process, or it gets set aside in the postal system somewhere. Inbound tracking lets you know what you should be expecting and cues you as to when you need to do some checking.

Retail Chains

  • Evaluating delivery around locations:  SnailWorks allows you to associate each address in a mailing with a user-defined field, so you can view delivery by region or store location. Some retailers will use this information to adjust store staffing or move high-priced inventory to locations where the mail is arriving earlier.
  • Identify when back-up marketing is needed:  If mail is delayed around a specific location as a sale date approaches, some retailers may use that information to schedule alternative advertising channels such as radio to be sure store events are well attended.
  • Sharing advertising information with stores:  A large retailer may send a large mailing to drive traffic to widely diffused locations or franchisees. By associating each address with a location, the SnailWorks system can send a “Your Mail” notification to let the local operator know when mail is being delivered around them. It helps them plan for added business, and let’s them know HQ is working hard for them.

 Production Agencies, Brokers, and Political Consultants

  • Assuring vendor compliance: Entry scans can help you juggle a variety of vendors and clients to make sure your vendors are meeting their commitments, and to demonstrate that to your customers. First scan data can tell you if, where, and when a mailing was submitted.
  • Coordinate other channels and other mailings:  Knowing when a mailing was delivered can be a valuable trigger as to when to drop subsequent mailings to keep timing or to trigger an alternative channel such as email or outbound telemarketing.

Mail Service Providers

  • Documenting mail induction:  SnailWorks mail tracking can help you provide your clients with documentation that your commitments were met in the absence of stamped postal forms regardless of how you mail – commingling, Seamless, drop-ship, or more. It is also a tool to make sure all the mail was loaded and inducted.

Something for Everyone

The list of benefits and the value derived from mail tracking goes on and on. These are just a few examples. If you are trying to sell tracking services to your customers, focus on what their needs are, and how tracking can help them. It gives you the opportunity to build a better relationship with your customers and gives you a source of revenue.

Of course, SnailWorks is your best resource to leverage them. Need some help formulating the perfect solution for your customers? Contact us.