Frequently Asked Franking Questions?

Before jumping into buying, renting or leasing a franking machine you may want to take a gander at some of the most common franking machine questions that we receive. If you are new to the franking machine industry then you may not be aware of the latest franking technologies, what franking actually is or what a franking machine is. The questions below are here to help you get to terms with franking and how it can benefit your business more than using stamps.

What is a franking machine?
A franking machine is a piece of equipment that is used to print a postage impression onto your mail items. It is the alternative method of sending your mail via stamps and comes at a much lower cost. A franking machine will produce something called a franking impression on your mail items and this holds key information about the mail piece, such as weight, price and sometimes where the item has actually come from. In order to use a franking machine you need postage, and this can be downloaded onto the machine via a computer or a LAN and this will pay for sending your mail via a franking impression instead of a stamp. Basically a franking machine prints money which is used to send your mail items, every day.A franking machine can be situated in your own office area, instead of walking to the Post Office for stamps, and will save you money every time it is used. Whether you use an entry level franking machine such as the Mailstart Plus or a higher volume franking machine such as the Mailbase Speed, this process applies to all machines. You can frank hundreds of thousands of items during one life of a franking machine whilst saving money along the way.
Why Get a Smart Franking Machine?
A smart franking machine is a franking machine that comes with smart meter technology, and they are superior to older, more regular franking machines. All modern franking machines come with smart meter technology as standard and as the name suggests, they are smarter and can tell the difference between your mail items. A smart franking machine comes with many added benefits, and this includes giving your business access to all VAT services & products, franking mail in improved smart blue franking machine ink and allowing you to reclaim any paid VAT. If you use Royal Mail VAT applicable services then a smart franking machine is required as standard.
Why Get a Mailmark Franking Machine?
A Mailmark franking machine is a franking machine that comes with both Smart Meter and Mailmark technologies, and they are very beneficial and superior machines in comparison to any previous types of franking machines. Almost all franking machines available come with Mailmark technology and the reason is because it is the latest industry leading technology available from Royal Mail. A Mailmark franking machine comes with many added benefits and this includes accessing and using much lower franking machine prices, having automatic postage rate updates and franking a new 2D barcode onto your mail items which will help improve the visual side of your mail items. Click here to find out more about Mailmark.
Is franking suitable for my business?
Yes, using a franking machine is suitable for almost all businesses. Unless you very rarely send mail, a franking machine will prove very beneficial for any business. Whether you send 20 items per day or 1000 items per day, there is a franking machine available for you which will help save you money as well as time in your mail room. Frank mail in the comfort of your own office, be more productive and increase the deficiency of your mail room with a franking machine.
How Does A Franking Machine Work?
Franking machines work by weighing your mail items so that they can be automatically calculated with the correct postage. Once calculated, a franking mark (also referred to as an impression) is applied to the mail item. This impression has all the information about the mail item so that Royal Mail can process it. This is the basic franking process. All franking machines use the latest franking rates that are established by Royal Mail. These rates are downloaded via the internet when using a modern franking machine. Older franking machines require a rate card or chip which can be installed to the machine. This helps to maintain the machine and ensure they are always up to date and using the latest rates.
What Is The Best Franking Machine For A Small Office?
The most suitable franking machine for a small office, in our opinion, is our Mailstart+ franking machine model. However whilst this operates very well for almost all small offices, some may require something slightly more advanced to help cope with their mail volume. Get in touch with us and we will carry out an assessment to find the perfect franking machine for your business.
Is franking cheaper than stamps?
Yes! Franking, especially Mailmark franking, is by far cheaper than using traditional stamps. A saving can be made on almost every item of mail you frank! Compare the latest postage rates here and see the potential savings you could be making.
Does franked mail get priority?
Franked mail is handled less and processed faster due to how the franking impression is read. As such a franked mail item will go through the entire postal system at a faster rate, so it is delivered faster to the recipient.
What does it mean to be Royal Mail Authorised?
We are brought to you by Mailcoms, a Royal Mail Authorised Independent Inspector & Maintainer of franking machines. As such it means that we have undergone a very detailed application process, to prove ourselves as trusted sellers by The Royal Mail.
Can I send franked mail aboard?
Yes franked mail can be sent both internationally and nationally. Not only this, but franking your mail abroad will cost you much less than using a stamp!
What happens if the wrong date has been franked?
This is an easy and common mistake to make, but do not worry there is an easy fix. Simply:
  • Using a black pen, put a line through the incorrect date.
  • Using the franking machine, select surcharge with a value of £0.00 (zero test print).
  • Ensure that the date is correct on the franking machine (if franking after 5pm the date will automatically change to the following day)
  • Re-frank the envelope or franking label with the correct date, either:
    • On the bottom left-hand corner or shorter edge of the envelope.
    • If using a franking label, place this on the envelope to the left of the original frank (do not cover original barcode).
What happens if I have under paid for an item?
This is an easy and common mistake to make, but do not worry there is an easy fix. Simply:
  • Using a black pen, boldly cross through the 2D Mailmark barcode only. Make sure that you do not cross through the price!
  • Write your initials on the envelope.
  • Using the franking machine, select surcharge and enter the remaining amount of postage to be paid.
  • Now frank the envelope or franking label again either:
    • On the bottom left-hand corner or shorter edge of the envelope.
    • If using a franking label, place this on the envelope to the left of the original Mailmark franking mark.
What happens if I have over paid for an item?
This is an easy and common mistake to make, but do not worry there is an easy fix. Simply:
  • Don’t post the items.
  • Remove the contents of the envelope or packaging and start again with a new envelope or new packaging.
  • Send any used franked envelopes or packaging (the whole envelope or packaging) to:
    • Royal Mail Franking
    • Stone Hill Road
    • Farnworth
    • BOLTON
    • BL4 9XX
What happens if I put franked mail in a post box?
All franked mail items must be either collected by the Royal Mail, placed into a franked mail post box, taken to the local post office or placed into meter posting envelopes. If it’s not possible to use any of these methods then you must ensure all of your franked mail is grouped together using an elastic band so it can be sorted easily.