There are a lot of different caveats in the shipping business that can make it an adventure for budget-conscious firms to send things on a regular basis. One of the most common is the understanding that the level of service can fluctuate in ways with companies that ship less than container load when you are focused on price.
Here are some ways to get competitive pricing that comes with the best quality service when shipping:
Look for a strong partner
Companies that you ship with will not always be perfect when it comes to schedule- yet they may be very competitive on price and get your products safely to your destination every time. A firm like Landstar.com is a good example of a company that has a global network of operators and agents that they have been working with for years. When you add to that a sophisticated logistics system and an ability to maintain favorable rates due to the volume shipped, you end up with a partner that can help you get your quote now and save you money.
Negotiate a favorable rate
When you first meet your shipping partners, they will be interested in knowing what volume level you plan to be shipping. As a manager, if you can project forward one year and tell them the level that you should be at shortly, it may help you to achieve a better rate with them from the start. The key for you do be successful with this strategy is to find a firm that doesn’t stick to a hard and fast ‘you will only earn discount credit as you accrue it’ policy.
If you don’t have an ERP or enterprise resource planning software supporting your business, take a look at implementing one because it will help you to gain the necessary details that you need to make better decisions about your future shipments. Some ERP software packages are free and easy to install, making customization the only area you need to focus on before you start using it. After you have a system like an ERP in place, start to schedule forecasts on a regular basis that will provide you with advance shipping information that you can use to work with your shipping partner. If at all possible, integrating your shipping requests with your partner’s software can also expedite and help automate the process of moving specific orders into the marketplace.