SCAN stands for Shipment Confirmation Acceptance Notice. Scan forms are manifests offered by the USPS that include a simple barcode that USPS officials can scan to process a large number of packages at one time, rather than having to scan the barcodes of individual packages separately. These forms can be scanned by letter carriers and retail officials alike. They’re always free of charge to create.
Using a Scan form saves you time if you’re sending off dozens or hundreds of packages in one go. There is no limit as to how many packages can be processed by one Scan form. The form will categorize mail in four ways: “Priority Mail,” “Express Mail,” “International Mail,” and “Other.” Forms can be used for both domestic and international packages.
The form is available online through your Shippo account in the upper right-hand corner of the Shipments tab (see below). UPS & FedEx packages do not offer Scan forms. Packages with UPS or FedEx labels don’t need to be scanned because the online label creation triggers the initial scan event automatically.
Creating a Scan form will typically be the last step you’ll perform in a day for your shipping routine. Here are the nitty-gritty details:
Remember, your shipments must be mailed on the same date as the one printed on your Scan form and forms cannot be created for shipment dates in the past.
You can create multiple Scan forms per day. If you create one in the morning, then create several more labels, when you create a second Scan form, it will include only those labels that were not on the first form.
A Scan form can be created for labels printed that same day, or labels printed with shipment dates up to 5 business days in the future (although the date on the Scan form will always be the date that the form itself was created, rather than the shipment date of the labels).
Scan forms are per location, meaning that if you’re shipping from two or more locations, you’ll need to separate your packages and create separate forms.
A big advantage of using a Scan form to process a large number of packages is that tracking for all packages will update once the form is scanned, unlike with individual packages. Your tracking numbers will always be accurate.
With Shippo, shipping is as easy as it should be.