In 2018, The United States transported around 51 million tons of freight per day. If your business focuses on the selling or creation of goods, chances are you depend on a freight carrier to keep things running smoothly.
It’s important to choose the best carrier to maintain consistent operations and meet your needs. Below, we’ve listed four tips to help you choose the right freight carrier.
1. Check Their Service Area
Every freight carrier company is different regarding the areas they will cater to. Some carriers only operate regionally while others operate nationwide.
Important things to determine are whether a carrier has coverage in the areas you need, if they ship to Canada, and if they use interlining to extend their coverage. The type of service area your carrier covers may also affect the shipping costs.
A carrier may be capable of delivering to a wide range of locations because of their drayage options. They may use truck, plane, rail, or water transport. Ask about how they transport goods to certain service areas to ensure it’s the best option for you.
2. Compare Prices
Shop for different freight carrier rates to ensure you find a carrier that offers what you need within your budget. Prices vary depending on several factors, and some carriers will offer discounts based on these factors. Factors to include when requesting a quote are:
- Type of freight
- Where you’re shipping from
- Shipping frequency
When comparing prices, it isn’t always the best to go with the cheapest freight carrier. Figure out your priorities and consider the entire experience along with the ultimate price.
3. Research Reliability and Communication
When transporting goods, you want a service that is reliable and communicates any issues or delays. Look for carriers with a history of reliability that provides regular updates on the status of your shipments.
Investigate the company’s transit times, damage policies, safety, and insurance policy. Companies with clearly listed information in these areas are more transparent in how they’ll protect your goods in everyday transport and if something goes wrong.
Find more about a company’s reputation by researching feedback from customer testimonials, other suppliers, and employees. Research the customer service channels they have available and how easy it is to get in touch with someone when you need help.
4. Explore the Services They Offer
Before going down the rabbit hole of shipping companies, determine your exact needs. One trucking company may not offer all the services you need and will force you to choose a second carrier to meet those needs.
If you don’t want the hassle of working with multiple carriers, you can find a carrier that offers the full range of services or work with a freight broker to coordinate several carriers on your behalf.
Your Choice of Freight Carrier is Important
The freight carrier you choose for your company’s logistics plays an important role in its success. It’s vital that you choose one that suits your individual needs by considering the factors in this article.
Are you currently shopping for a logistics service provider? Check out our logistics services to see all that we offer.