The same company that introduced the postage meter 90 years ago has announced it will launch a free digital mailbox in 2011 that will allow customers to pay multiple bills online without remembering more than one password.
Pitney Bowes’s multi-platform Volly will allow consumers to receive, pay and organize all their bills with bank-like security. In addition to bill-related features like a pay calendar and reminders, customers will also have an option to opt in to catalogs and coupons from the companies of their choice…
The concept could make paying bills more convenient for the 70% of households that, according to a 2009 survey by Javelin Strategy & Research, pay their bills online. According to same survey, more than 47% of those households used a combination of at least one biller’s and one bank’s bill-pay service. Volly could reduce the number of accounts they use to one, but only if Pitney Bowes can get a critical mass of billers to offer the option.
As the major player in just about every technology related to snail mail, Pitney Bowes is uniquely qualified to help make it obsolete. The company already works with about 74% of high-volume mailers in the United States, and while Volly’s demo version includes companies like “Viso” and “Lordstrom,” it’s not hard to imagine that companies with customer bases as large as Nordstrom and Visa would opt in.
The service is also cheaper for the sender than traditional mail and integrates easily with existing mailing processes.
Like digital mail startup Zumbox, Volly’s mailbox will be attached to a street address. In other words, if a business already has a list with your street address on it, they’ll be able to find your Volly mailbox. This makes it easier for these companies to integrate Volly with their existing processes and more likely for them to offer it as an option.
Broadridge, A technology solutions company that coordinates communications for businesses in the financial industry, has already partnered with Pitney Bowers to offer the option to its clients; but no other partners have been announced.