Sales method using some version of mailing to obtain the order. Generates inquiries and orders from advertisements in suitable media, including the Internet. Contrast to phone order. Buyers and sellers have no face-to-face or vocal contact. Mail order firms, also known as direct mail firms, use personalized letters and catalogs disparagingly called junk mail based on highly specialized address lists, known as mailing lists, often sold by mailing research firms. Nearly everything is available by mail order. It is often priced less than retail stores. Only industrial equipment and too bulky goods are not mail-order items.