With so many freight shipping companies to choose from, it can be difficult to determine which one is right for your business. You want every shipment to be handled with the utmost care, but between costs, coverage and transit times, how do you strike a balance to ensure you’re getting the right fit? Luckily, we broke it down into some smart tips so you can easily evaluate your options.
When deciding between freight shipping companies, consider the following factors to ensure you pick the right carrier for your needs:
- Cost: Knowing how much you’ll be spending is obviously one of the most common concerns when selecting a freight carrier. While checking rates can feel like a tedious task, it’s important to know your pricing options. When you partner with a third-party logistics (3PL) provider, you get access to a transportation management system (TMS) – such as Unishippers’ Freight Manager™ – which allows you to quickly compare reputable freight carriers from a single log-in.
In addition to the initial quotes, it’s also important to compare each carrier’s policies for accessorial fees. These fees can vary between freight shipping companies (and can add up quickly!), so minimize surprises on your invoice by checking your carrier’s policy before you ship.
- Coverage: Depending how far your freight needs to travel, you’ll have to decide between a national or regional carrier. While some of the top freight shipping companies offer national delivery, many smaller carriers provide pickup and delivery services at a regional level. Plan ahead by ensuring that the carrier you select can meet your specific location needs.
- Transit times: How quickly does your freight need to get to its final destination? Pay attention to carrier transit speeds to make sure you select a freight shipping company that has the delivery options your business needs. And remember – while some carriers may be able to deliver your freight faster than others, faster delivery typically means higher rates.
- Range of services: Be sure to check if each carrier offers the specialty services you require, such as hazmat shipping or sealed divider service. By understanding the services you’ll need – and which services each carrier offers – you can ensure you have everything covered before you ship. Not sure which services your freight shipping will require? Check out Unishippers’ Guide to Comparing Freight Service Type
- Reliability and communication: An affordable carrier means nothing if your shipments are consistently delayed. To keep your business shipping running smoothly, you need a reliable carrier to deliver your freight on time – and keep you updated on your shipment’s status in transit. A good carrier will also keep you updated on any service disruptions that could delay your shipment, so you can keep your customers informed.
Don’t have time to properly vet potential freight shipping companies? A good 3PL will only partner with the top, most reliable freight carriers. This means that they do the initial legwork, so you don’t have to spend time worrying about carrier quality.
While you may be willing to settle on certain factors when choosing between freight shipping companies, getting quality service shouldn’t be one of them. Whether you’re shipping your freight down the street or across the ocean, you deserve affordable shipping rates, reliable communication and transit times you can count on.
Download Unishippers’ handy tip sheet, How to Choose the Right Freight Carrier, to remind yourself of these important deciding factors.
Need help selecting the best freight shipping companies for your business? A 3PL like Unishippers can help! With our wide network of carriers, robust service selections and affordable negotiated rates, Unishippers makes it easy to choose a quality carrier for your freight shipping. Contact us today to get started.
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