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What are the best sizes for postcards

Size makes a big difference in the rates you pay for direct mail.  It can be a bit confusing given the number of choices you face.   In this article we will be focusing on postcards and letters.

There are multiple takes on size for postcards.  Here are a few:

  • Smaller size faster more cost effective printing and delivery – You can mail a postcard that is no larger than 4.25”x6” and no smaller than 3.5”x5” at first class postcard rates that are similar in price to standard mail letter rates.  The minimum quantity for first class bulk mailing is 500 pieces.  Delivery normally takes 1-3 days, and printing is less expensive, but there is much less space for your message.  These smaller size postcards are best for simple notifications that need to be delivered as soon as possible.  
  • Large postcards – Pieces up to 6.125”x11” are considered “letter mail”.  The full first class rate is 49 cents, but standard mail rates are much more affordable and are around $0.27.  Typical effective postcard sizes are 8.5"x5.5" (the equivalent of a half sheet of 8.5"x11" paper), 6"x9" or 6"x11"
  •  “Jumbo” postcards – These are postcards that are too big to qualify for letter rates, typically 8.5”x11” or as large as 12”x15”, which is the maximum size.  These are termed “Flats” by the U.S.P.S. and postage rates are usually around $0.54.  If you saturate an area and mail to everyone in a postal carrier route you can get similar postage rates as letter size pieces.

Each postcard size has it advantages and disadvantages.  For your direct mail campaign it is helpful to weigh the pros and cons of cost, presence in the mailbox, and speed of delivery to select the best postcard size