Best Practices

Introducing virtual mailboxes to your community

You need an introduction that explains Virtual Mailboxes to your community and stands out to prospective customers. But what do you say? How do you say it? 

So you are launching a new service such as a virtual mailbox to your community? In this post we will cover some of the basics on a virtual mailbox, then share email templates you can implement to land and onboard new virtual mailbox renters. Let’s dig into it!

First, let’s get into the basics. Copy paste this template to share with prospective customers:

Customer: "What is a Virtual Mailbox?"

Mail Operator: "A virtual mailbox is a physical mailbox that you can access digitally. As a mailbox renter, you'll be notified, along with a picture, of each incoming mail item received at our mailroom. You can make requests to us as your mailbox operator on different ways of handling each mail piece."

Let’s explain in more detail. 

A virtual mailbox is a platform that offers a private mailbox renter access to a cloud-based mailbox. From a renter’s point of view, all their incoming mail is digitized by their mail operator. They will be notified of their incoming mail with a picture of the front of each mail piece. In PilotoMail, they can even choose the type of notification, when to receive it, and how often. A renter can submit requests to their mail operator including to open and scan a mail’s contents; forward to an address of choice; even shred junk mail. Think of it as an email inbox for physical mail.

Why sign up for a virtual mailbox?

Here are the benefits and advantages you can share with your prospective mailbox renters. Pick and choose those that apply to your office or mail center. 

Convenience of accessing mail remotely, 24/7

As a mail operator, you can configure PilotoMail to enable which action requests your mailroom has available as a service. Share these explanations for each action request! Add on any special reminders or policies of your mailroom. 

  • Open & Scan: Request made by mailbox managers for a piece of mail to be opened and scanned.
  • Forward: Request made by mailbox managers for a piece of mail to be forwarded via postal courier to a preferred address.
  • Shred: Request made by mailbox managers for a piece of mail to be shredded.
  • Leave at office: Request made by a mailbox manager with a physical office to have their mail left inside their locked office.
  • Check Deposit: Request made by mailbox managers for a check to be deposited in a bank in the area (the bank options can be defined by the mail operator)
  • Recycle: Request made by mailbox managers for a piece of mail to be recycled.
  • Pick Up: Request made by mailbox managers for a piece of mail to be picked up, you can offer onsite and/or curbside pick-up.

📌 Learn more about submitting requests.

As a virtual mailbox renter, you can manage your mail from anywhere with our mobile-friendly website. It offers the convenience of 24/7 online access, saving you from trips to pick up your mail. We receive your mail, and you receive a digital copy of the front of your mail piece. Then you may request to the mailroom operator to open your mail, scan its contents, and upload to the platform for easy viewing.

Better than a P.O. Box

Most states will not allow a business to use a PO Box (or a home address for that matter) when registering a business as an LLC or corporation. Bank and merchant services typically will not accept a PO Box as the main business location either. That means they would not be able to open a business bank account with only a PO Box. 

For your business to establish a physical presence, you need a private mailing address. It's bank and government approved as most states do not allow a P.O. Box as your main business location. That means you would not be able to open a business bank account with a P.O. Box. A virtual mailbox includes an address from a physical office location with a real street address that can be used for almost all purposes, personal and business.

Automate Requests

If you offer automated requests such as auto-forward, let your mailbox renter know how they can configure their mailbox:   

Configure your mailbox to auto-pilot with automations. As a renter, you may enable certain requests to be automatic. For example, set forwarding automation so you can automatically have your mail forwarded from your business address location to your preferred address.

As an operator, you can optimize your offerings with automations. On the operator Settings page, you can set up various requests for your mailbox renters to automate. On their mailbox, they can enable automatic requests for open & scans, forwards, and leave at office. All automations will go to the corresponding Request tab, without the renter having to request it.

📌 Note: If you haven’t configured your mailbox offering plans, go back to Step 2: Configure Your Mail Offering.

Stay on top of your paper mail

When a user submits a request for their mail to be scanned, they can download a copy to their device. Here’s a step-by-step guide to download scanned contents in PilotoMail.

No more missing important deadlines. Your virtual mailbox keeps track of your mail, including bills, checks, etc, and date of when it arrived and checked out of the mailroom. Make sure to submit an open and scan request to view the contents of your mail. After your request is fulfilled, you can download it as a PDF and save a digital copy for your records.

It’s a team thing. Give different access to your team.

Mailbox renters can add new team members as mail recipients. As a mail operator, they are authorizing you to receive mail on their behalf. 

If a team member is only picking up mail, a mailbox renter can invite them as pickup staff. As they arrive to pick up mail on behalf of the accounts and its recipients, make sure you mark who picked it up so you can have a receipt of sign-offs.

A mailbox may have multiple users with different access functionalities. As a mailbox manager, you can receive mail, make actions requests and manage account settings, including inviting more users to your mailbox.

If your team will be receiving mail under their name as recipients, they can be invited as Mail Recipients. They can receive mail and submit action requests too, but can’t invite other users or manage account settings. Mail pick up staff are only authorized to pick up mail on your behalf but cannot receive mail and do not have access to your mailbox account.

Instant Notifications

Make sure your mailbox renter never misses their incoming mail. Let them know they can enable notifications from their virtual mailbox account:

Get notified on every incoming mail and packages, as well as completed requests. You can also opt to schedule your notifications when it is convenient to you: instantly as you receive mail, once a day at a specific time, or never. Here's how to set up your notifications.

Privacy & security

To give an operator authority to accept mail on a renter’s behalf, the mailbox’s owner, managers, and its recipients must verify their identity by uploading two IDs.

Why we trust Stripe?

Stripe uses the best-in-class security tools and practices to maintain a high level of security. Stripe has been audited by a PCI-certified auditor and is certified to PCI Service Provider Level 1. This is the most stringent level of certification available in the payments industry.

No need to run to pickup mail. If you are going out of town, moving somewhere else, not available to pickup your mail regularly, or your team is remote-friendly or fully remote, a virtual mailbox is the best bet. Your mail will be secure in the mailroom until you are ready for pickup or you can have your mail operator deal with it by requesting an action in PilotoMail. Trained personnel will handle all mail items at one secure, access-controlled mailroom facility. They provide more security than traditional mailboxes, as mail theft has become increasingly common. According to the Postal Service, mail theft is a thriving criminal enterprise, having increased 600% between 2017 and 2020.

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