Before taking the decision to invest in a new franking machine for your business, it goes without saying that firstly you need to be confident you’ve selected the right machine in terms of volume capacity and functionality. Franking machine prices vary wildly depending on your business needs so it’s worth spending a bit of time researching what’s available. Unfortunately, this can be a difficult piece of information to pin down in the research stages. There are a limited number of Royal Mail approved manufacturers and suppliers of franking machines and many do not publicise their prices.
The best way to find out franking machine costs is to request multiple quotes. Suppliers and manufacturers will provide these quotes free of charge so you can compare their prices against the functionality on offer. To give you a jumping off point in your research, we’ve done our own research on franking machine prices in 2018. They are intended only as a guide as prices will vary from supplier to supplier and will obviously vary depending on the sophistication of the technology.
Buying a Franking Machine
The price of your new franking machine will depend on your business’ requirements. It can be tempting to opt for a lower cost machine to ‘save money’ but this is a short term strategy that will more often than not end up costing you more in the long run. If the machine you buy cannot cope with the volume of outgoing mail that you are producing it will be more prone to breakdowns and costly repair jobs.
Franking machine prices are generally differentiated by volume i.e. the number of letters / parcels it is able to frank in a day. The below table represents the average purchase price for a franking machine in 2018.
|Average Items of Mail (per day)||Type of Franking Machine||Average Price*|
|Up to 30||Low volume||£995-£3,000|
|20 – 100||Mid volume||£3,000 – £8,500|
|100-1000s||High volume||£8500 – £21,500+|
As you can see, the price range even within each volume level is significant. This is because, in addition to volume capacity, franking machines also vary hugely in terms of their features and technology. By buying a franking machine you are investing in a franking machine as an asset for your business and you avoid entering into the long term financial contract needed to lease a machine. Another key benefit of buying a franking machine is that you will usually pay less for the machine than you would over the total term of a lease agreement.
Leasing a Franking Machine
For businesses which do not have the funds to purchase a franking machine outright there is the very popular option to lease a machine. This not only enables you to break the payments into affordable / monthly chunks but will also include a servicing and maintenance support service from the supplier. This means that if something were to go wrong you won’t be charged for the repairs needed; if you buy your machine, you will be responsible for the cost of annual maintenance and repairs. Franking machine leases often include the option to upgrade the machine to a different model which is perfect for growing businesses which need a bit more flexibility.
The amount you will pay for a franking machine lease will again be directly linked to the volume capacity and functionality of the machine.
|Average Items of Mail (per day)||Volume Level Category||Monthly Lease Cost (exclu. VAT)||Total Paid in Lease Over 3 Years|
|30 or less||Low volume||£20 – £30||£720 – £1,080|
|20 – 100||Mid-volumes||£40 – £50||£1,440 – £1,800|
|30 – 500||Mid / High volume||£50 – £80||£1,800 – £2,880|
|500 – 1000s||High volume||£85-£400+||£3,060-£14,400+|
*Intended as representative figures only. Actual quotes will vary.
When you’re considering introducing a franking machine into your business it’s important to understand the money you will be saving through discounted postage fees against the cost of the machine. The below table is based on Royal Mail prices correct as of October 2017.
|Royal Mail Service||Standard Price (£)||Franking Price (£)||Saving per item (£)||Saving per 100 items||Saving per 1000 items|
|First Class Standard Letter (up to 100g)||0.65||0.57||0.08||£8.00||£80.00|
|First Class Royal Mail Signed For® Letter (Up to 100g)||1.75||1.65||0.10||£10.00||£100.00|
|First Class Small Parcel (up to 1kg)||3.40||3.12||0.28||£28.00||£280.00|
|First Class Small Parcel Signed For® (up to 1kg)||4.40||4.12||0.28||£28.00||£280.00|
|Second Class Standard Letter (up to 100g)||0.56||0.41||0.15||£15.00||£150.00|
|Second Class Royal Mail Signed For® Letter (Up to 100g)||1.56||1.48||0.18||£18.00||£180.00|
|Second Class Small Parcel (up to 1kg)||2.90||2.62||0.28||£28.00||£280.00|
|Second Class Small Parcel Signed For® (up to 1kg)||3.90||3.62||0.28||£28.00||£280.00|
|Special Delivery UK Letter – Guaranteed Next Day By 1pm (Up to 100g, with £500 insurance)||10.74||6.20||4.54||£454.00||£4,540.00|
|International Standard Letter within Europe (Up to 100g)||1.57||1.47||0.10||£10.00||£100.00|
|International Standard Letter outside Europe (Up to 100g)||2.27||2.17||0.10||£10.00||£100.00|
Other Costs to Consider
In addition to the considering the cost of the machine weighed against the potential savings on postage rates, there are some other ongoing costs to keep in mind when comparing quotes and prices:
- Ink cartridges
The price of ink cartridges will vary from model to model and each will deliver a different number of imprints. Be sure that you are taking the cost of ink into consideration alongside the cost of the machine as this could make a seemingly ‘cheaper’ option more expensive in the long run.
- Tariff Updates
When the Royal Mail update their postage tariffs your machine will need to be updated to correspond. There is usually a charge for this update so it’s a good idea to question the suppliers at the outset.
- Top-up Fees
Your machine will be linked to a unique credit account with Royal Mail; as funds deplete you’ll need to top this up and there is usually a charge involved in doing so. This can be as much as 5% of the amount you are adding to the account.
- Servicing contracts
If you are buying your machine outright you will be required by the Royal Mail to get it serviced annually. The best way to do this is to take out a servicing contract which will add to your monthly outgoings.
If you’d like to save a lot of time getting prices from each provider, we can do this for you. There’s no charge for this service, we are paid a small commission for providers if you choose their service.
We strongly recommend comparing multiple quotes to make sure you’re getting the best deal. We can arrange no obligation quotes from the UK’s most trusted invoice finance providers. Complete the form below and we’ll be in contact within 1 business day.