9 Tactics for Optimizing Your Ground Transportation Strategy

Ground transportation is a complex process. Here are a few methods to make ground freight more cost-effective and efficient for your company.

Ground transportation is a complex process. Here are a few methods to make ground freight more cost-effective and efficient for your company.

Ground transportation is the most common method of shipping goods domestically, but that doesn’t mean it’s a given that it will always generate a solid ROI. In an omnichannel retail and multimodal shipping environment, maximizing your value requires creativity, flexibility, and expertise in a number of different areas. Here are a few helpful suggestions that will help your ground transportation strategy better support your ultimate business goals.

1. Optimize Your Delivery Time

Most companies prioritize delivery time above all else, willingly paying excessive fees for expedited shipping. With some adjustments to your supply chain — for example, increasing your manufacturing lead time — you’ll be able to utilize more cost-effective service options and still meet your deadlines.

2. Effective Packaging

Properly packaging cargo is an often underestimated aspect of cost-effective shipping. Poorly packaged goods are at greater risk of damage or theft, both of which can result in unnecessary delays and fees. Be sure to invest in durable packing material, and avoid theft and loss by consolidating cargo whenever possible.

3. Find the Right Carrier

It’s important to note the differences between a regional carrier and a national carrier, especially when it comes to Less-Than-Truckload (LTL) shipping. Because they have more direct routes, regional carriers are often faster than their national competitors. In order to avoid hauling empty trailers, regional carriers also frequently offer discounts to customers with regular cargo deliveries.

4. Find the Right Mode of Transportation

Because shipping needs are becoming increasingly complex and diversified, it’s in your company’s best interest to be flexible with different methods of shipping. For example, companies should consider whether it’s more beneficial to use LTL shipping rather than full truckload shipping. Intermodal shipping is also another option that could affect transit time and cost.

5. Consider Asset-Light Carriers

Asset-light carriers are transportation providers that combine assets with other partners to enable flexibility while still providing maximum value. Customers will often find more competitive rates with asset-light carriers because they can provide greater exposure to new markets.

6. Do Your Research

When it comes to finding the best value in transportation, the importance of preparation and due diligence can’t be stressed enough. Doing some research into best shipping modes and providers will help you weigh the most cost-effective options, instead of being forced to use expensive methods due to fast-approaching delivery deadlines.

7. Read the Fine Print

It’s always a good idea for companies to review shipping contracts on a regular basis. There are many factors that might have changed since signing your original agreement, including changes in products being shipped, as well as packaging considerations.

8. Beware Accessorial Charges

Any freight service beyond pickup and delivery is often an accessorial charge, and can include lift gates, fuel surcharges, storage, tolls, or after-hours delivery. Because these fees can easily add up, it’s important to make sure the provider is upfront about accessorial charges when pricing shipping costs. You should also consider using other methods to avoid using accessorials, including communicating with the receiver or using a courier when delivering.

9. Find the Right Provider

At Primary Freight, we pride ourselves on our ability to move cargo quickly, securely, and efficiently to your destination. Our strong alliances with global carriers across all major modes of transportation allow us to provide our customers with flexible, cost-effective, world-wide coverage and availability. Our wide variety of ground transportation and distribution services include:

  • Short-term warehousing, inventory management, and storage
  • Cross-dock and merge-in-transit services
  • Devanning, transloading, distribution
  • Pick, pack, and order fulfilment
  • Import border distribution, and deliveries
  • Export order consolidation
  • Local, regional, and national distribution

Primary Freight is a valued connection to the global logistics market and would be proud to serve as your company’s point of contact for international and domestic trade.

If you’d like to learn more about our award-winning services and customer support, contact a dedicated specialist today at (800) 635-0013.