eBay prepaid satchels - Start to Finish.

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I began using the Australia Post/eBay prepaid satchels in June this year.  I started using them because I was frustrated with the 'hit & miss' approach I was using for postage.  By this I mean guessing at what the postage charges might be.  I remember going to the post office thinking I was charging the correct price for postage, only to find I was totally wrong and ended up making no money on the whole deal.  Sound familiar?  Well I'd had enough so I thought I would look into the eBay prepaid satchel option and this is what I found...

Before you think about using these satchels you need to ask yourself the following questions:

1. Is your computer system compatible with Click and Send?
2. Do you have a credit card?
3. Do you have a colour printer?

If you answer 'No' to any of these questions and you want to use the eBay prepaid satchels then you need to make sure you answer 'Yes' to the above questions.  To be able to answer 'Yes', you need to do the following checks.

1. Go to the Australia Post website. Click on the link for 'Click and Send'.  You will then be taken to the 'Click and Send' website.  If your computer system is 'Not' compatible the following error message will be displayed 'Your system may not be compatible with this application. Click here for further information'.

2. Click the 'Click here' link and the system requirements will be displayed below the link.  Click and Send currently supports Windows XP SP2 or later, Internet Explorer ver 6.0 or later, Mozilla Firefox ver 2.0 or later and Apple Safari ver 1.0 or later.  It does NOT support Google Chrome at the time of writing this guide.

3. If you are using a web browser other than those listed above then repeat step 1 using one of the above browsers and you will be able to access Click and Send.

4. You will also need a credit card to be able to make payment for the postage charges of your prepaid satchel. Currently there is no other option available.  If you do not have a credit card then you will not be able to use this service.

5. You will need a quality colour printer.  This is because you will need to print out a postage label which is red in parts. This identifies the label as an Australia Post Parcel Post Plus product.  A barcode is also printed on the label for tracking purposes.

If you meet all the above requirements then you are ready to go!  Here is how you do everything from start to finish.

1. Order your prepaid satchels from either eBay or Australia Post online. You cannot buy these satchels in a normal Australia Post retail outlet. The satchels come in 2 sizes; 500g and 3Kg.  These sizes will suit a wide variety of products. (Make sure the item you are sending is not prohibited.) Multi pack purchases are cheaper than single pack purchases.  Postage times will vary depending on your location.

2. Go to the Australia Post website and select 'Send a parcel Now!' This will send you to the Click and Send website to set up your account.  You will have 3 options at the bottom of the home page: Sign Up Now, Login or Sign Up Later Send An Item Now.  For those without a Click and Send account choose the Sign Up Now option.

3. The first page you will see is a Privacy Page.  Follow the instructions required to get access to the application form.

4. Complete the application form and remember your user name and password for further use.  Once completed you are now ready to send some items!

5. Login to your Click and Send account.

6. Choose Create Items at the top of the page. You will now be told to 'Enter your item details'.  You can import  items from eBay that you have 'sold and been paid for'. This icon is at the top of the page.  This saves time in retyping customer details. The eBay item reference is automatically entered for you.

7. You now need to select 'Satchels and other items' option.  Enter the 5 digit product code on the back of the satchel and click on 'Check'.  You will now see the product details autofill with tracking selected.  You can select 'Tracking with signature' but this will cost extra.

8. You then need to select 'Choose service type'.  This will give you your costing at the bottom of the page.  I strongly recommend you also select 'Delivery Instructions' just in case the buyer is not at home when the item is delivered.  I normally choose 'Leave a card in the letter box and leave the item at the nearest AP outlet.'

9. Now select 'Add item to basket'.  This will take you to a new page where you can either edit your order or make payment.

10. To make payment select 'Pay now lodge later'.  You will then be taken to a secure website to make credit card payment.  Once you have made payment you will be automatically redirected back to Click and Send for further instructions.

11. You will now be required to print your postage label.  To do this select the item with the buyer and seller details. You can also select to print a tax invoice and/or transaction summary if you wish.

12. You will need to wait whilst the label etc is being created.  This can take a couple of minutes so don't despair if you think it is taking too long.  Once printed you will be asked to click the icon at the bottom of the screen.  Make sure the label is clear and the barcode is not smudged.

13. If all is OK then you can either logout of your account or send another item.  The choice is yours!

14. Now, we are almost there.  You will need to sign the declaration on the postage label.  Once done, use a pair of scissors to trim the label so that it can fit in the plastic pocket on the satchel.  Place the label in the display pocket and ensure you seal the label properly.

15.  Place you item in the satchel and post in any red street post box.

You have now sent an item using an eBay/Australia Post Satchel.

This is by far one of the cheapest and easiest methods of sending an item within Australia.  You have the peace of mind factor because the item can be tracked online by either yourself or your customer.  If you have any problems, the Click and Send Helpdesk is available. You can either ring them or email them.  Their service is very good and nothing is ever a problem.

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