Postal Service releases 2015 Household Diary Study

SteveBlog, Story

The Postal Service has released the Household Diary Study (HDS) Report for Fiscal Year 2015. The HDS measures the mail sent and received by U.S. households, tracks household mail trends, and compares mail use between different types of households.

Among the Study’s findings:

  • In 2015, U.S. households received 119.9 billion pieces of mail, and sent 10.5 billion. Mail sent or received by households constituted 84 percent of total mail in FY 2015.
  • Fifty-five percent of the mail households received was sent Standard Mail. Only three percent of household mail was sent between households; the rest was sent between households and non-households.
  • In 2015, households received 4.2 billion and sent 0.6 billion packages. Compared to 2014, total packages sent and received increased about 9 percent.
  • Households received 4.9 billion Periodicals via mail in 2015, less than in 2014 or 2013. 77 percent of these were magazines. Newspapers represented only 15 percent of total Periodicals, a steep decline from 35 percent in 1987.

With regard to how people use the brick-and-mortar post office, the Study states, “In spite of a declining frequency of visits over the past several years, the use of post offices for mailing services continues to dominate the mail service industry.”

The Study indicates that “fifty percent of all U.S. households patronize a post office at least once a month, while just 13 percent visit a private mailing company. Over 22 percent of all households in the U.S. visit the post office three or more times a month.”

The following chart shows the number visits to the post office in 2015 compared to 2008:

Visits to the Post Office

The number of visits in 2015 were down slightly from 2014.  As last year’s Household Diary Study reported, in 2014 29 percent of households visited the post office 1-2 times; 18 percent visited 3-6 times, and 6 percent visited 7 or more times.

Like the 2014 Study, the 2015 Study concludes with this observation: “Even with the continued availability of mail-related products and services through alternative modes (such as Internet orders), in-person visits to postal facilities remain strong.”

Read the Study here.