Q&A with Brian Clark of The UPS Store

Q. What year did your business start?

The UPS Store

We’ve been called The UPS Store since 2003 but the store actually opened in 1989 under our original name of Mail Boxes Etc. That means we will be celebrating our 30-year anniversary next year! I think that’s good enough reason to have a party.

Q. Where are you located?

We’re at 1971 Western Avenue in Guilderland, right next to Hewitt’s Garden Center. I think we are the oldest business in the plaza now.

Q. What hours are you open?

We’re open 8:00 am to 6:00 pm Monday through Friday and from 8am to 4pm on Saturdays. We do, however, have 24 hour access for Mailbox holders, 24 hour Fax receiving service, and you can place orders through our website 24 hours a day as well.

Q. What are the advantages of renting a Mailbox with you vs a PO Box?

Where do I start? First, we offer a real street address, so you can receive deliveries from any carrier, UPS, FedEx, DHL and the Post Office whereas most post offices only let you receive regular mail, no UPS etc. Then all the other conveniences, 24-hour access available, email notifications when you receive a package, call-in Mailcheck service. For small businesses the biggest benefit is that they don’t have to give their home address out to all their customers and the street address looks more professional than a PO Box. For our residential customers the most important aspect has been the security of safe mail receiving along with knowing their packages won’t be left outside in the snow or rain or vulnerable to porch pirates.

Q. Is it less expensive to print color copies with you or from my home printer?

It is usually less expensive for us to print for you. The print yields you find on the ink cartridges for your home printer can be a little misleading. They usually refer to a very small amount of coverage, like a double spaced essay or something. Once you get into printing docs with photos or graphics you are looking at up to 60 cents page on many home printers. The highest you’ll pay here is 49 cents on premium paper and the price drops the higher your volume.

Q. What is Every Door Direct Mail?

EDDM is a great way for businesses to mail out advertising material without having to buy a mailing list or get a bulk rate permit and it’s a fraction the cost of first class mailing or even post card mailing. We can handle the entire process right here. First we design the mailing piece then you pick out postal delivery routes right on an interactive map. As you click on the road/route you see how many homes and businesses they have, and your shopping cart updates the printing and mailing cost as you go along. It even shows you the average income on that route. That’s about as much work as my customer has to put into it and we walk you through that anyway. We take care of the rest, from uploading files, bundling mail pieces, labeling the bundles, delivering to the appropriate post offices, etc. We’ve taken what many small businesses saw as a little daunting and boiled it down to two steps.

Q. Any advice for new businesses starting up?

I would say to get involved in the community. Support a charity. Sponsor a team. Join the Chamber of Commerce, go to the mixers and events. The more people you meet and talk to the better. And don’t forget about The UPS Store. We are the perfect first stop for new businesses. We can set you up with business cards, car door magnets, flyers, banners, anything you need printed, and, of course, a street address as well.

Q. Anything else you would like the community to know?

I would like the community to know that despite being a franchise my store is truly local. Not only is the store in Guilderland, my family lives in Guilderland, my extended family lives in Guilderland, my kids go to school in Guilderland, my church is in Guilderland, and I’m even on the board of the Guilderland Chamber of Commerce. When you come into my store you can be sure your money is staying local.

 

Visit the UPS Store at 1971 Western Ave, Albany NY 12203 or online at https://albany-ny-0917.theupsstorelocal.com

If you have any questions, you can reach them by phone at (518) 452-6085.

Lowell Knapp

Lowell Knapp

Started Our Towne Marketing in 2005. In addition to publishing Our Towne Guilderland each month we also provide print and web design services. Serves as a Board Member with the Guilderland Chamber of Commerce and a Member of the Ethics Board for the Town of Guilderland. Lives in Guilderland with wife Kristen, son Ryan and daughter Kyra.