The Standardized Address


According to the United States Postal Service, a standardized address is an address that is

  1. fully spelled out
  2. abbreviated using USPS standard abbreviations
  3. uses proper formatting

Using a standardized address in your mailings will improve delivery rates, save you money, help you to avoid penalties, and retain your donors.

USPS recommends using a complete and standardized address. This allows the address to make an exact match the USPS database.


United States Postal Service
211 S Clark St
Chicago, ILĀ  60604-9998

1st line: Recipient
2nd line: Delivery Address (address line 1 and 2)
3rd line: Last Line (city/state/zip)

Address Components

Addresses have many different components. Primary and Secondary address data will compose the Delivery Address. City, State, and Postal Code will compose the Last Line. These can include but are not limited to:

  • Primary address information
    • Street Number
    • Street Pre Direction
    • Street Name
    • Street Post Direction
    • Street Suffix
  • Secondary address information
    • Unit Type (apt, unit, etc)
    • Unit Number
    • Private Mailbox Number
  • Last Line address information
    • City Name
    • State Code
    • Postal Code
    • Postal Code Extension
    • Country(optional)

These are just the standard. Addressee line and attention lines can also be added.

Improve Delivery Rates

Address Standardization and NCOA services provided by the TrueGivers Data Stewardship Integration improve delivery rates in three important ways. First, they provide new addresses for moves within the last 48 months. Having an updated mailing address helps you ensure more of your mail pieces reach their recipient. Second, they identify other move data, which helps you avoid sending mail to a vacant, invalid, or just plain wrong addresses. Third, NCOA standardizes all of your addresses to meet USPS mail standards. This makes it easier for the post office to deliver the mail.


Read more about USPS preferred address formatting:

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