January 11, 2008

Mail Fusion

Mail Fusion

For 8 or 9 years now, we haven’t received a single bill by U.S. mail.  We use PayTrust (originally PayMyBills.com) for “online” bill pay.  We have a P.O. Box somewhere in South Dakota that we’ve redirected all our bills to.  The bills get opened, scanned, we get an email, we enter in a payment amount and date.  No fuss, no muss.  PayTrust even figures out which bills can be electronically delivered and provides an easy interface to set that up directly into the PayTrust account as well.  I haven’t received a bill or written a check in years.  I think we pay something like $9/month for the service.

I just ran across a new service this week called Earth Class Mail (thanks to my colleague Alex Rubin for pointing this out) that does the same thing for ALL of your snail mail, with a twist.  You direct all your mail (presumably not magazines) to a P.O. Box, and they first scan in all the envelopes.  You see them and decide what to do with each item — forward to you, scan in and show you online or via pdf, recycle, shred, etc.  The cost seems to range from $10-60/month depending on volume.

Certainly a good idea, at least for people who travel a lot or people who have to pay for a P.O. Box anyway (not sure it’s for everyone), and another interesting service where email takes center stage as the mission critical delivery vehicle.

2 responses to “Mail Fusion”

  1. Zoli Erdos says:

    Back in the 90's when I lived on planes/ airports / at client sites, PayTrust and Earth Class Mail would have been a lifesaver. ( I had to rent bigger and bigger PO Boxes due to junk-mail).
    But today I hardly ever receive snail-mail, and with free online banking, plus most utilities offering direct deposit or credit card payments, paying $9 a month seems like an unnecessary expense to me…

    (Btw, I tried to log in, but Intense Debate choked on my Openid validation..)

  2. Wow. Good to know I'm not the only one using PayTrust (now part of Intuit). They got me hooked a few years back and I've moved several times with no need to change my postal address with all of my billers. The online delivery of the bills, and not just the online bill pay, was what has made it attractive for me, because it's so easy for a bill to get lost in our house. It goes on the kitchen countertop, and then disappears. E-mail is at least searchable!