Published May 05, 2020
For online business owners, a virtual P.O. box is an indispensable tool. It helps them receive mail and correspondence anywhere in the world.
Also known as a “virtual mail address“, it offers more benefits and features than traditional P.O. boxes. Plus you can choose your business address without having to rent an entire building in that address. In short, it’s an economical way of establishing the integrity of your brand.
How does it help with your business’ integrity?
In general, people trust businesses with an office address in a primarily commercial location as compared to those located in an obscure part of the countryside. Having an office address in downtown Manhattan shows that you can afford to do business in that area. This tells the customers that you mean serious business.
Another benefit of having a virtual address is you can manage your correspondence anytime and anywhere. Your customers send the letter to your virtual P.O. box and the virtual mailbox provider will forward it to you. Most of the time, they’ll send it through electronic means. This lets you access your business correspondence at your convenience.
Here is a step-by-step guide on how you can set-up a virtual P.O. box in the US:
1. Decide on Your Preferred Virtual Business Address
As mentioned above, a suitable virtual business address helps establish customer trust. So you need to give a lot of thought to where you want your virtual office to be in.
Listing a business address in one of the premier business districts also helps build client confidence. Office spaces in those areas are usually expensive and this tells your client that your business is doing well since you can afford it.
2. Search for a Reliable Virtual P.O. Box Renting Company
This is the most important step in the process. There are a lot of virtual P.O. box rental companies in the US offering varying rates and packages. But before you enter into a contract, make sure to check the company’s background first.
Check for online reviews and even their social media page. Also, take a look at the location of the virtual addresses they are offering. Some companies offer virtual P.O. boxes all around the country. If possible, check if those addresses really exist. Don’t forget to observe their customer service procedures. If they took a long time replying to your inquiry, then it’s indicative of how they will respond to your concerns in the future.
3. Pick a Service Plan
As mentioned, different companies offer different service plans with varying rates. Needless to say, carefully choose which plan best suits your needs and budget.
Some of the most common inclusions in a virtual mailbox plan are:
- a permanent mailbox address
- envelope forwarding options
- online mail viewing and management
- cloud mail storage
Some companies will also accept and deposit checks on your behalf. Most virtual mail plans are on a monthly basis though several companies offer yearly options too.
4. Choose How You Want to Receive Your Mail
Part of setting up your virtual mail address is (of course) choosing how you want to receive your mail.
Most virtual mailbox companies will give you two options: mail forwarding or online. If you choose the former, you need to inform them where to forward the letters. If you’ll go for the latter, they can either scan the letters and send them to your email or upload them to cloud storage.
If you don’t have a permanent address, receiving your mails online is much more practical. You can access it anywhere and anytime. Some companies will also let you create a letter online and they’ll print and mail it for you.
5. Publish Your Virtual P.O. Box Address
When you’re done setting up your virtual P.O. box address, you need to publish it to make it official. Put it in your letter headers, business cards, websites, and social media accounts and wait for the mails to start coming.