People may not like getting bills, but they prefer to receive them in the mail and pay them online.
That’s the finding of our study on transactional mail, which is made up mostly of household bills and payments moving as First-Class Mail.
We collaborated with the consulting firm InfoTrends to analyze 3 months’ worth of customer billing data from a major U. S. utility. We also jointly interviewed executives who manage bill delivery and payment processing to help determine how the utility’s delivery-and-payment costs and customer preferences compare with those at other utilities and even in other industries.
As you can see in our new white paper, Will the Check Be in the Mail? An Examination of Paper and Electronic Transactional Mail, we found that despite a clear preference to pay bills online, 91 percent of customers prefer receiving their bills by mail. Even among the utility’s newest customers — those expected to be more digitally savvy — an average of 89 percent opted to have their bills mailed to them, though, like the others, most preferred paying online.
The reasons are pretty simple. People like having a physical mailpiece as a reminder to pay and as a record-keeping tool. The execs we spoke with said our results are consistent with what they’ve been seeing and hearing.
It’s also consistent with another clear directive from consumers: they want options in just about everything, including bill delivery and payment. So, in addition to being good news for mail, our findings suggest that a company offering a variety of bill delivery and payment options will keep customers happy.
Do you prefer receiving your bills via regular mail or email/text? How about paying – do you pay online or ‘is the check in the mail’?