While the economy is going strong, shippers are facing trucking industry rates that have jumped 10-20% over the last year. To overcome these astronomical costs, businesses are devising innovative ways to optimize their shipping strategies.
Ranging from gaining transparency to implementing alternate shipping methods, these optimizations empower shippers to streamline their operations, update outdated methodologies, and, ultimately, boost their bottom lines.
Ready to optimize your shipping strategy and lower costs? Read on to learn more.
Gain Transparency Into Your Operations
One of the best—and easiest—ways to optimize your shipping strategy is to gain transparency into it. How can a shipper do this? By ensuring you have access to real-time, accurate data.
Data is useful in many ways. For example, if you have an app that provides the real-time logistics of your loads, you can preemptively discern which deliveries might be late, and by how much. With this critical knowledge, your teams can prevent or reduce the impact of any adverse effects in the supply chain.
Once you’ve gathered enough data, analyzing reports can help your business improve your overall shipping strategy, too. For example, if your team notices that trucks use an excessive amount of gas on a seemingly short route, you might consider routes that involve less uphill driving.
Consider Alternate Shipping Methods
Shippers are used to operating a certain way and on a certain schedule. However, reconsidering common practices can help your business in the long run.
For example, you might be used to hiring trucks completely dedicated to your goods—even if those trucks aren’t completely full. In these cases, you might either delay a shipment until the truck can be filled or ship it at low capacity. However, if you know you’re going to have a smaller-than-usual shipment, you can easily combine your partial load with another business’s partial load. This practice, called load consolidation, ensures that each truck is full and empowers the two shippers to split the cost.
Shipping schedules are another aspect of your strategy to consider. While most of the week is consistently busy, Fridays and Mondays are well-known as slower shipping days. Additionally, most shipments are picked up during regular business hours. If you need to ship non-perishable items or items that can withstand the change in schedule, consider adjusting the days or times that you ship your goods. Carriers can often offer lower prices on these off-peak days or after regular business hours.
Take Advantage Of New Technology
While third-party services used to be very helpful for shippers, new technologies have replaced their functionality without charging their high fees, giving shippers more control over their shipments—at a lower cost.
For example, shippers used to rely on freight brokers or freight boards to hire carriers and drivers. While expensive, these tools were necessary if shippers wanted to find reliable businesses to transport their goods. However, advanced logistics software has empowered shippers to take freight transport into their own hands. For example, tools like freight negotiation apps allow shippers to connect with carriers directly.
These apps include other useful benefits for shippers, too. For example, shippers can easily track the location of their loads in a sleek interface. Additionally, instead of hiring a third-party payments provider, shippers can make fast and secure payments to their carriers through their app once they receive confirmation that their loads have been delivered.
Ultimately, new freight technology offers shippers the chance to take operations into their own hands and bypass the high costs of third-party services.
Ready to streamline your shipping strategy with a freight negotiation app?