Below is an email I received yesterday from my good long-time customer, Mike, who reached out about an oddball shipment. He needed to return six 10’ racks to his manufacturer in OH. He’s a really busy guy (the business’ owner) and on any given day he’s involved in client meetings, site visits, managing his staff of 9 people and overseeing transportation. He doesn’t have an extra hour to chase down quotes, make calls and think about the best way to move racks from his warehouse in MA back to the manufacturer in OH. Here’s how Mike removed a stressful hour from his day while also knocking $759.00 off his LTL freight bill by sending a simple 2 minute email...
A recent phone call between myself and an LTL freight carrier:
Me: Hi, I’m trying to find this shipment that is missing and wondering if your terminal has searched it’s storage trailers for it?
Her: Okay, can you give me the pro# and a good description? Pictures if possible?
Me: No problem [description given & pictures sent]
— 5 minute hold —
Her: Oh! I have this! It’s on our storage trailer, we didn’t know what it was but it’s definitely it!
Me: That’s great! Can you send it out tonight?
You can find your lost freight if you know where to look. Here’s how…
Who would you rather be?
Gary: “Honey, I think we should cancel our vacation...my booth showed up to the show on the last day and I only booked one small sale. Also, I need you to pick me up from the airport at 2 AM, I think we should cut back on Uber for now”.
Barry: “Hey babe, the show went great! I’m going to stay an extra night to grab dinner with a new client, these guys bought everything we had left AND pre-ordered the next container! Let’s celebrate this weekend, I’m thinking Ruth’s Friday night?”
It’s hard to underestimate the importance of getting your stuff in front of thousands of industry eyeballs. Imagine all the orders popping up on your email the week after the show, your phone ringing off the hook. With all of this potential balancing on just a few days of activity, how much would it suck if your booth never showed up? Keep reading to learn how to avoid being Gary so you can focus on being Barry.
Time is money. This is never more apparent than when you need product to arrive immediately and each minute that painfully ticks off the clock is another lost sale to your Big, Ugly Competitor (let’s call them B.U.C.) with an inferior product whom you HATE losing business to. When you fly your freight you can…
Having adequate insurance for every freight shipment is a no brainer, yet it’s often not discussed before a shipment takes place. As a shipper or consignee this should be part of the quoting process because not having enough coverage is easily remedied by buying more. Read on to learn everything you need to know about LTL freight shipping insurance. (Skip to the end for the bullet points but don’t you dare skip over my algorithms)
Shipping freight can be an easy and beautiful thing for your business. If your shipment picks up, moves and delivers without any complications you can make people on the other end very happy. On the flip side, things can go sideways quickly if you miss even a single seemingly small detail. By following a few simple steps you can avoid a lot of headaches and keep your (ware)house in order. Whether you ship freight regularly and just looking for a refresher or completely new to shipping because of a job or company you started this post is for you.
In the world of LTL Freight shipping it’s the question of the ages: “what is my freight class?”. There is confusion around what class is, what it means and how to find it for a specific commodity. In this post I will aim to tackle all three and set you on your merry way ready to ship freight like a champ.
What's the best way to ship a pool table you bought on ebay directly to your house? How about a 3D Printer? What about a couch from Wayfair? When it comes right down to it, you have two options: LTL or whiteglove. As more of ecommerce shades direct to consumer the transportation industry has some strides to make to catch up. This also has implications for the myriad of businesses now run from a residence.
There’s a network of super men and women whipping around the country in specially equipped sprinter vans. You probably haven’t even noticed them but there’s one within 45 miles of your location at any given time ready to swoop in at a moment’s notice and shuttle your hot shipment (4 skids or less) anywhere on terra firma. They’re the surface expedite army and they are the swiss army knives of the freight industry.
You’re importing goods for your business. One of the most important decisions you’ll make is what INCO term you use for your shipment. INCO terms are trade terms published by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) that are commonly used in international trade contracts. These 3-letter terms are important because they define the tasks, costs, and risks associated with the transportation and delivery of goods. INCO terms create a common ground for international trading partners to establish who pays for what.
You are moving a shipment using an LTL service. A lot is riding on it: It’s the first impression you get to make on your customer. If it moves out on time your business will look like a well oiled machine. But if it not…you’ll look like the other guy. Even overlooking a seemingly small detail can trigger a chain of negative events with catastrophic results for your business. It can cost you valuable time, money, resources and worst of all, customers.
When you hear the term ‘Air Freight’ you probably cringe a little because in shipping it’s usually associated with expensive mistakes. But, if you’re like me and you have hidden inside an air freight shipment once just to see exactly what happens on it’s journey, you might already know about the following counter-intuitive facts about the world of expedited freight transportation.
You’ve used a respectable national freight carrier for your freight shipments for a long time, perhaps even years, and you’re happy enough. What’s not to like? Your rep is a nice guy, he stops by every month to ask about your kids and drop some company schwag, and it’s just easier to keep doing what you’ve been doing.
But could a freight broker be even better for your business?
You run a business. You have clients demanding product. You are really freakin busy. How do you make sure you have enough product on hand to fill orders? What can you do to make sure things run smoothly in your demand chain (coinin' that)? Well, the answer is A LOT actually! This blog post will tell you exactly what to expect with inbound freight shipments in the New England area and how to handle your LTL freight shipments like a freight boss.
The best way to think about Concealed Damage is like a new car on a lot. The second you drive off the premises the value drops like your 401K did in 2009 (actually worse). Likewise, the moment you sign the delivery receipt 'clear' and the driver leaves the freight on your dock, it loses 2/3 of it's recoverable value. Yup, 2/3 right off the bat. Which is why you need to be cynical and handle it with a cool head.
Bulletproof Your Shipping
Choosing a freight provider is a lot like assigning the right secret agent to a mission. You want the one best suited to get the job done right. Recently you’ve asked yourself “How can I get better LTL shipping rates in Boston?” or “who has the best customer service for freight companies in the Boston area?”. Can’t you just google “freight brokers in Boston” and snag the first one who comes up? Aren’t all freight brokers and carriers in New England basically the same? Well, my friend, they are not. And the reason there exist so many brokers and trucking companies in the Boston area is that there are so many different niches and specialties to be served. Here’s how to find the one (or two) best suited for your particular logistics finery.
In case you were wondering if you should be reading this blog or not I’m going to make it easy for you. There are at least 10 reasons why someone should NOT read freightsavvy.com. I’m listing them in no certain order but the second you see one that applies I would advise a hasty escape. For your safety when you do find a reason that applies to you the exits are marked by red “X”’s and black “<--“’s. Please proceed with caution toward the first available exit and do not run or toss children and old ladies aside (Looking at you, Constanza).
WHY SHIPPING WARS IS THE WORST THING THAT EVER HAPPENED TO SHIPPING
The freight shipping business is not sexy despite Shipping Wars' Disney-wood portayal. Loud (real) trucks and grizzly (real) drivers commanded by angry (you get it) dispatchers barking orders from faraway outposts. It’s rough around the edges and frankly the middle is not much smoother. But, don’t be fooled, this lean mean trucking machine is meant to do one thing very well: move large & heavy goods from A to B quickly and cheaply. And if you are a startup, small business or Ebay seller you cannot afford not to take advantage of the amazing economies of scale available to you through this vast network of carriers. This post will explain how to get into ship-shape despite not having a dock, forklift, pallets, etc. and why you should avoid UShip at all costs!
EXPLAINING 'LESS THAN TRUCKLOAD' FREIGHT
Every industry has it’s own lingo and it takes time to learn everything you need to know so you can roll in the deep. This article defines 'Less than TruckLoad' shipping and how LTL operations work. If you are new to shipping give yourself time to decode the language. it took me 6 months working full time and I still hear (and make up) new ones all the time. We'll start with most widely used and misunderstood term, 'LTL'.