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Plug-n-Mail with Click2Mail’s 2 APIs

May 08, 2012

 

Using Click2Mail’s Application Program Interfaces (APIs) to Make Mail Even Easier: Plug-n-Mail

 

Click2Mail always aims to make mail easier, faster, more effective, and more affordable – whether you’re mailing ten pieces, a hundred, or five thousand, once in a blue moon or every week.  We’ve talked a lot about the benefits of using a cloud-based mail outsourcing service for your mailing needs.  You save the money you would pay a staff person (or yourself!) to print, sort, stuff, and stamp.  You save the cost of paper, printer ink, envelopes, and stamps.  You avoid the cost of an address standardization application.  You save the cost of a bulk mail permit – and you still get bulk mail discounts.

 

Plug-n-Mail

And all of that is always true for Click2Mail, no matter how you use our service.  For many of our customers, using Click2Mail.com to purchase a mailing list, upload the mailpiece design (or use one of our templates), and click to mail, is the easiest, fastest, and most affordable way to get a piece in the mail.  But for some other customers – those who mail very regularly and/or mail in large volumes – putting a bit of effort into developing to our application program interface (API) saves a lot of time over the long run.  That way, you don’t have to go to Click2Mail.com to print and mail.

 

With one of our APIs, your own computer program is plugged directly into Click2Mail’s cloud-based system – whether it’s your customer relationship management (CRM) or enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, your accounting program, or your website. You don’t have to exit your system to print and mail through Click2Mail.  Literally, it’s Plug-n-Mail.

 

Two API interfaces to choose from and now more user-friendly

Click2Mail has offered a SOAP API for a while.  We’re now excited to announce the addition of another option, the REST API.  Developers can use either one – choose whichever you prefer – and get the same great result.  Some of the benefits of each are:

 

  • The new Click2Mail REST API is the most user-friendly of the interfaces.  It allows users to upload a document file and associate it with a stored mailing list.  Because it uses HTTP GET, POST and PUT requests for client/server communications – and HTTP support is standard in most programming languages – additional libraries and plug-ins are normally not needed. This is true plug-and-mail.
  • The Click2Mail SOAP API supports preconfigured templates and variable data and allows a developer to specify a stored document template, populate it with data, request a preview, and request the order. The SOAP API interface also allows users to upload documents in multiple file formats in real time.

 

Most of the Click2Mail mailing options – including postcards, booklets, letters and flats, Priority Mail®, flyers and self-mailers, Certified Mail (ERR), First-Class Mail®, Standard Mail, and IMb Tracing™ – are supported by both APIs.  Postage discounts apply automatically on all standard addresses and both APIs provide discount production pricing with qualifying volumes.

 

How you can use the Click2Mail APIs to Plug-n-Mail

The purpose of the Click2Mail APIs is to make mailing even easier for regular and large-volume mailers.  Use it for:

 

  • Setting up systems for ad hoc or recurring mailings 
  • Automating the generation of variable data documents
  • Integrating the output of postal mail from your website
  • Customizing existing mail submission interfaces
  • Automating and outsourcing micro-volume mail jobs

 

One client, for example, has a customer relationship management (CRM) system through which they send a monthly postcard to their customers.  Instead of having to export their list from their system, import it into Click2Mail’s system online, then upload the mailer, they use the API to plug Click2Mail into their CRM system so they are essentially just clicking a button to print and mail those postcards each month.

 

Last year we told you the story of the company that plugged the Click2Mail API into its website.  Visitors input their contact information requesting a free information packet.  That “order” automatically comes to Click2Mail, where we personalize the documents, print, put them in a Priority Mail® envelope, and mail to the recipient.

 

Of course, these are just a few examples of ways that you can use a Click2Mail API to seamlessly integrate Click2Mail into your own system.  Really, the sky’s the limit on how you can plug Click2Mail into your system.

 

Plug-n-Mail today!  Visit http://developers.click2mail.com/getting-started.  Everything you need to access, customize, and test your API implementation is online now. Click2Mail’s Developer website provides step-by-step instructions for working with both API platforms and many types of applications.  If you have questions, call the API hotline at 855-294-5601.