By ALLEN RAU
While shipping makes up the lion’s share of their business, the Packet-N-Post, located at 107 E. Courthouse Square in downtown Jonesborough, offers enough different business options to open another store.
According to owner Mark Hicks III, that is no accident.
“The shipping is going to get you a 40 to 45 percent return, which is good, but you have to have a lot of it. But you have to do other things, too. You need to do the printing. You need to sell some supplies. You need to do the notary, the laminating. They’re small charges, but they add up. They make the difference.”
Hicks, who also owns the building, tried to rent the space out, but had difficulty finding a steady tenant for the space that was his father’s law office in the 1960’s. Instead, he said he decided to open up the mail specialty store in October of 2017.
Since then, “business has been picking up. It’s been getting better. We don’t have a big storefront, we don’t have a lot of signage, so people have to find us. But everyday we have somebody walk in and say, ‘I didn’t know you all were here’.”
The Packet – N – Post offers shipping through UPS, FedEx, DHL, and the U.S. Mail as well as freight shipping. Other services include: printing (business cards, greeting cards, pictures), copying, scanning, office supplies, notary, fax, gift wrapping, laminating, mailbox rental, fingerprinting (using Fieldprints service) and rubber stamp making. Recently, the store began offering a room to rent for various business related uses.
“If someone is in town and needs a quiet space to negotiate. If they need a place in town for a few hours. And it can even be something like if you were catering food for something like an all-day meeting event.”
With the holidays fast approaching, gift-wrapping may be a desirable task to outsource.
Office Manager Gail Stallard added, “We will custom pack anything they have for shipping. There’s no need for them to have something to ship and to look around at home and try to figure out how to pack it. They can bring it here and we can professionally pack it.”
Another unique service Hicks said the store would offer is auction pick-ups and shipping. If someone bids on an auction item online and needs to have it shipped anywhere, an employee would pick up the item, have it packed and then shipped to the desired location.
Hicks said the biggest issue the business had was simply the knowledge there was a mail specialty store right in downtown Jonesborough.
“Our main concern is letting people know we’re here. We’re here for the holidays, you don’t have to go to Johnson City.”
For additional information, contact Mark Hicks or Gail Stallard at (423) 753-0101 or online at www.packetnpost.com.