Dealing with the logistics of shipping is one of the hardest things about running a small business.
It can be really overwhelming. Using freight shipping service has a lot of benefits, although it is not always the best choice.
The process may seem daunting, especially for those who are not familiar with what freight forwarding is and how small businesses use it.
So, let’s dive into the world of freight shipping and make it a little less intimidating!
What Is Freight Forwarding?
Freight forwarding refers to the coordination and shipment of goods from one location to another via a single or multiple carriers.
It is one of the most popular means of international transport of goods. It is used by both businesses and individuals.
A freight service provider will help your small business blossom.
What Are Freight Forwarders? What Can They Do For You?
A freight forwarder is responsible for the transportation of your cargo from point A to point B.
Using a knowledgeable freight forwarder should make the entire process much easier, so think about hiring cargo moving company with impeccable customer service.
Freight forwarding companies arrange the entire process for their shippers and serve as an intermediary between the shippers and transportation services.
They ship goods using a range of carriers, such as road freight, air freight, ocean freight, and railway freight.
Some freight forwarders specialize in a specific type of cargo, while others accept various types. Read these tips on how to choose a freight forwarding company wisely.
What Services Can They Provide?
- International export and import documentation
- Customs Clearance
- Inventory management
Make sure you ask whether the company offers extra services before getting a quote.
This way, you’ll know what you get and how much it costs in advance, so there will be no unpleasant surprises when the bill arrives.
A lot of freight forwarding companies offer extra services such as cargo insurance, warehouse storage, cargo tracking, and dangerous goods handling.
The Difference Between Small Package and Freight Shipping
Small package shipping
Goods weighing under 70 lbs per carton, shipped in cartons rather than on a pallet, are typically relocated using small package services.
Express carriers like UPS, FedEx, regional courier services or DHL for international exports are often used for such shipments.
The US Postal Service works with small package carriers delivering small packages via FedEx Smart Post, UPS SurePost, and UPS Mail Innovations.
You can choose to work directly with the US Postal Service Express Mail and Priority Mail services.
Cartons that exceed the following weight and size limits should be shipped via freight services.
- Individual packages can be up to 150 lbs;
- Each package can be up to 165 inches in length and girth (2x width+height) combined;
- Packages can be up to 108 inches in length;
- Packages with a large size-to-weight ratio demand dimensional weight calculations (multiply length x width x height/166=dimensional weight in pounds for US shipments).
In addition to exceeding the mentioned limits, freight shipments are typically placed on a pallet to secure the stability and protection of the cargo, regardless of whether it is transported via air or ground.
How Small Businesses Use Freight Forwarding; Benefits
Small businesses can reap more benefits from using the services of a freight forwarding company compared to doing it alone.
In fact, freight forwarding is efficient and cost-effective for companies of all sizes.
Thanks to the forwarders’ expertise, you can be sure that the shipped goods will arrive safely and timely at the desired destination.
Your customers will appreciate that. By offering quality service, your small business can compete with a major brand selling similar products. Besides, you can save money in the process.
Having expert advice and assistance is invaluable. Considering how complicated shipping can be, having people with years of experience in the shipping industry by your side is priceless.
Shipping experts who know very well what freight forwarding is and how small businesses use it can guide and advise you every step of the way.
Avoiding Lawsuits and Customer Complaints
Lawsuits and customer complaints are every business owners’ worst nightmare. Reliable freight forwarders protect your company from start to finish.
For example, not having enough insurance is one of the worst finance mistakes that could cripple your business.
In addition to cargo insurance, their freight forwarding services include risk assessment and management.
Freight Forwarders Handle All the Paperwork in Advance
Freight forwarding always involves a lot of paperwork, especially for overseas shipping.
All of the paperwork for transporting your items should be completed before they are handed to the freight company.
Your business could suffer due to delays if your goods are not released from customs or the bank refuses to release your funds.
Luckily, the freight forwarder will provide the relevant documentation (Commercial invoice, Certificate of origin statement, Bill of lading contract, etc) to ensure that your shipment reaches your customers as planned.
Freight Forwarding Cuts Costs
Cutting costs is one of the major benefits of freight forwarding. Knowing what freight forwarding is and how small businesses use it can save you money.
You will need less time and fewer employees, thus reducing payroll. Avoiding unnecessary spending is one of the best finance management tips for small businesses.
Working directly with the shipper costs much more, so why waste your resources when you can put them to better use?
Working with professional freight forwarders means a speedy delivery.
They always know the quickest route and the best way to avoid unexpected delays and missed deadlines if possible.
Your shipments will have a guaranteed arrival time. There is a strict schedule all parties must adhere to, but delays in shipping may occur and freight forwarding companies are not responsible for them.
Bad weather conditions, breakdown, port delays or unforeseen route changes are the most common causes of delays.
Such delays are never welcome but you can rest assured that your freight forwarding company will do its best to resolve the problem as quickly as possible.
Marko Maxa Maksimovic
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- What Freight Forwarding Is and How Small Businesses Use It - July 19, 2019