Explaining Proprietary Change of Address
Sending mail costs your business time and money—sending mail to the wrong address costs even more time and money. That’s when the Proprietary Change of Address (PCOA) process comes into play. Discover how running your lists through a PCOA database helps you lower the risk of sending mail to the wrong address.
- Proprietary Change of Address (PCOA) uses sources outside of the National Change of Address (NCOA) database to locate additional information regarding resident relocation.
- PCOA databases use sources like magazine subscriptions and utility companies to locate the change of address information.
- The NCOAlink full-service database offers updated addresses from third-party direct mail providers for individuals who’ve filled out a change of address form at the post office over the last 48 months.
- Ensuring your addresses are always accurate with NCOA data can reduce operating costs and improve productivity.
- The PCOA process collects mailing information from individuals who didn’t fill out a change of address form when they moved.
- Proprietary Change of Address data matches are confirmed individually to prevent false identification.
- In some cases, PCOA databases collect more information than NCOA databases, such as deliverable address confirmation, deceased records, and move distance.
- Some change of address data tools run your records through the PCOA and NCOA databases, so there are different benefits to working with a provider with access to both resources.
What Is PCOA?
Proprietary Change of Address (PCOA) uses sources outside of the National Change of Address (NCOA) database to locate additional information regarding business and resident relocation that the individual did not update through the post office. PCOA databases collect information from trusted third-party sources like magazine subscriptions and utility companies, store the update, and give licensed mailing service providers access to accurate, up-to-date information, decreasing the amount of lost and undeliverable mail.
Explaining USPS Change of Address Databases
Since PCOA databases use sources not provided by the postal service, PCOA databases offer different information from the NCOA database. Let’s explore the differences between the United States Postal Service (USPS) change of address databases.
National Change of Address Data
The NCOAlink full-service database offers updated information from third-party direct mail providers for individuals, families, and businesses who’ve filled out a change of address form at the post office over the last 48 months. When a U.S. citizen moves and submits the form to their local post office, the change is recorded in the NCOA database.
Proprietary Change of Address Data
In some cases, PCOA databases collect more information than NCOA databases. If your direct mail service provider often runs mailing lists through the NCOA, using a provider that has access to the PCOA database can offer you additional information like:
- Deliverable address confirmation
- Deceased records
- Move distance
- Do Not Mail record information
About 13% of Americans move every year—and 40% do not fill out a change of address form with the post office. However, individuals who’ve moved recently update their credit card provider with their new billing address, so the PCOA process collects mailing information for those who didn’t fill out a change of address form when they moved by using trusted sources like utility and credit card companies to track and confirm address changes.
Partnering with a licensed mailing service for outsourced statement printing lowers the amount of mail lost or returned to the sender.
Benefits of Accessing Change of Address Data
Some change of address data tools run your records through the PCOA and NCOA databases, so while some benefits are the same, there are also other advantages to working with a provider with access to both resources:
Accessing Proprietary Change of Address Data
Partnering with an outsourced direct mail provider who has licensed access to PCOA data offers a wide range of benefits, like increased delivery rates, reduced undeliverable mail, and higher revenue. By accessing updated address information from trusted third-party sources, you can also ensure your mailing lists are always complete, accurate, and current. With up-to-date records, you can stay in contact with customers who failed to report a change of address to the USPS. Proprietary Change of Address data matches are also confirmed individually to prevent false identification. For every record match, the new standardized mailing address is sent to you to update your records.
Some PCOA processes go a step beyond providing new addresses. Master databases can also offer insight into the contact’s move to improve decision-making methods, including the type and date of the move, move confidence level, and recommended actions.
Accessing National Change of Address Data
Ensuring your addresses are always accurate with NCOA data can reduce operating costs and improve productivity. When costs are down and production is high, you can improve your bottom line. You can also save money on sending undeliverable mail by partnering with a direct mail expert with access to the NCOA database.
Other benefits of accessing NCOA data include:
Keep Your Lists Accurate and Complete With PCOA Data
At Presort, we ensure your lists are always accurate and complete with PCOA data. We’re partnered with BCC Software to receive access to their PCOA master database, where we collect, compare, and match moving information from multiple sources, like magazine subscriptions, credit cards, and utility companies. Then, we use our PCOA services to compare your list to their database. With every match, our team sends you a list of updated addresses and a variety of supplemental data to help you save time, money, and marketing materials. Contact us today to learn more about our NCOA and PCOA data access.