Even with the rise of electronic communication, physical mail floods businesses daily. This means that every business, even a home-run business, will need a business mailing address.
A business mailing address is an address you use for business correspondence. It can either be a physical street address or a virtual address. Budding entrepreneurs, especially those running an online business from home, prefer not to use their home addresses as their business addresses. The reasons will be discussed below.
photo credit: Jaimie Harmsen / Unsplash
Need for a Business Mailing Address
The first step before planning to get a business mailing address is to decide whether your business actually requires it. There are numerous scenarios where it becomes prudent to have a business mailing address.
1. Running an LLC
If you are running or planning to run an LLC (limited liability company), then you need to name a registered agent. The registered agent is a third party who can receive all correspondence and legal documents on behalf of your business. This will require you to have a mailing address for the registered agent. It also needs to be in the same state where you are running the business, and it has to be a real street address.
There are a lot of business-related activities that require you to fill in your business mailing address, like registering for your website domain. This address might be visible to a lot of people if you are not paying for specific privacy features. This can put the safety of you and your family in jeopardy.
So, sometimes people who are running a home-based business like to keep their home address a secret. In that case, a business mailing address becomes necessary.
Business establishments receive a lot of confidential documents. Sometimes, you may not be comfortable with your family members going through such sensitive documents. It is better to avoid such circumstances by having a business mailing address.
4. Safety from theft
Home mailboxes are often prone to thievery. By having a business mailing address, you can prevent your important checks and documents from getting stolen by petty thieves.
Your business mailing address is permanent. It will remain the same even when you shift homes.
Having a business mailing address will reduce the hassle of changing your entire business mailing structure while moving houses. Even when you are traveling, you will be able to get forwarded business mail with the help of a business mailing address. This is quite difficult if you use your home address for your business. This can lead to you missing some critical and urgent mail.
6. Mail sizes
If you own a home-based business that can receive packages too large, they may not fit in your personal mailbox. It is advisable to have a business mailing address to accommodate such mail.
Your business image is an essential factor contributing to the success of your business venture. Having a business mailing address will make your home business look much more professional, reputable, and established than a home address.
Customers tend to trust a business with an established mailing address.
8. Promote business growth
Since having a business mailing address provides a professional look to your home business, it will attract a lot of potential customers. Similarly, a business mailing address does not raise any privacy issues. This will enable you to market your business to all different corners of the world, while contributing positively to your business growth, at the same time.
Drawbacks of a Business Mailing Address
Even though having a business mailing address has several benefits, it can also have some downsides.
To have a virtual business mailing address, you need to pay a fixed amount of money regularly. For a budding entrepreneur short on budget, this can feel like a big expense. By using your home address, you can save this money and invest it in your business.
Many virtual addresses come with add-ons, like meeting spaces. If your business does not need such add-ons, then you have to make sure to choose plans accordingly to prevent unnecessary charges.
Using a virtual business mailing address may not be as convenient as using your home address in many cases. This inconvenience can be a minor or major one, depending on the situation. When you are using your home address, the mail will be delivered to your doorstep. But, when using a business mailing address, you have to go and retrieve the mail yourself.
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How to Get a Business Mailing Address
There are several ways in which you can get a business mailing address. Some of them are:
1. Reserve a PO Box
This is the most straightforward and lowest-cost option. When you reserve a PO box at USPS (US Postal Service), after paying a fee, it gets allocated to your business.
You can choose the size of the box you want from five different box sizes. The box will come with a real street address or a PO Box address. You can collect your mail at any convenient time. But, you will not be able to get packages from carriers like FedEx or UPS.
2. Rent a business mailbox
Virtual office provider like www.virtualreception.com.au offers a mailbox service for its customers. If you use this service, you will get a lockable box with a real street address. They also accept mail from all carriers. Some areas even offer 24-hour access to your box.
3. Register for a virtual mailbox
A virtual mailbox is an online mailbox with a physical address. You can read your mail online using a virtual mailbox. The virtual mail companies will scan all your mail and send you the digitized version. You can also instruct the companies to do tasks like shredding or forwarding the mail unopened to you.
4. Rent or buy a business address
This is the most expensive yet the most permanent option. You can either rent or buy an address, like an office space, and use the address as your business mailing address.
photo credit: Rob Martin / Unsplash
Before deciding on whether you need a business mailing address or not, you have to consider whether you can bear the associated cost. If you are a bit tight on cash, you can get a business mailing address later on. You can also do a bit of local research and choose the option that seems best for you.