Consider these retail expedited shipping tips with the holidays around the corner.

Warehouse preparing shipment

Due to the precedent Amazon and Wal-Mart have set in regards to speedy shipping, retail companies are attempting to compete against these titans by increasing their investments in expedited shipping. When you have goods to deliver and no time to waste, expedited shipping could be the solution to your time constraint and customer demand challenges. 

In its broadest sense, the goal of expedited shipping is to fast-track the delivery process. Expedited shipments travel directly from pickup to delivery. Occasionally, there are separate routes designed to accomplish time-sensitive deliveries, but the most common underlying factor is that the trucks shipping expedited goods very rarely stop along the way. 

While expedited shipping is a great way to accelerate the delivery process, it does come at a premium, and therefore must be treated as such. With the holidays right around the corner, it’s getting to be that time of the year to incorporate an expedited shipping game plan. 

Read on and consider these retail expedited shipping tips before planning your next shipment.


Stick with your original delivery time.

It seems like almost everyone involved in the logistics chain, from the person who places the order, all the way to the traffic manager will include unnecessary “added time.” Often times a shipment that has been planned to leave at 5 a.m. will ultimately depart later due to different team members adding extra padding time. Keep a clear line of communication among staff as this added time can very easily translate into added cost. What typically works best is to have faith in your delivery evaluation and stick to the original delivery time.


Determine the right method.

If you utilize the wrong method of premium transportation, you’ll end up paying for high and unnecessary charges. Paying air charter for a job that an exclusively-used truck can manage is one such way of increasing shipping costs that can easily be avoided.


Compare different carriers.

Typically, if you’re someone who works with only one or two different carriers, you will end up paying more. Instead, you should be looking to maximize service through reducing labor, increasing visibility and ultimately achieving significant cost savings by seeking the help of online service providers. These organizations can determine the best available prices and often prove to be much more effective than pre-established partnerships and agreements.


Compare shipping methods before you need them.

Searching and comparing various expedited shipping options in advance provides you with an extended timeframe to review competitive carrier solutions and make well-informed decisions. Hasty and unplanned last-minute decisions tend to be far more expensive.


Choose the right equipment.

With the abundance of choices available and not enough information about them, you need to be extra careful when it comes to choosing the right expedited shipping equipment (cargo van, straight truck, 53’ trailer). It’s crucial to not only consider the bottom line number but also verify that there are no hidden fees, as well as quality of service.

Shippers should know the details of their shipment to choose the right equipment. For example, if you know the dimensions and weight of your shipment, then you’ll be able to choose a cargo van or truck that fits your shipment and save money. In cases where part of a shipment must be expedited, you can ship that part as needed and the rest of it via a more economical mode of transportation.


Have a clear and accurate line of communication.

All involved parties have to be held accountable for the information they provide. Relaying inaccurate information whether it’s related to a shipment’s weight, dimensions or even timing can cost thousands of dollars. One such example might involve a client needing to move a six-piece shipment that weighs 3,000 pounds, but when the truck arrives, the pieces are too long or heavy to fit and an additional truck is needed. 


Ensure proper visibility.

How confident are you that your customers have complete visibility over their shipments? All parties, whether it’s shippers, suppliers, or carriers, should be linked from the start of the transportation process. Stay up-to-date with the latest freight shipping technology to ensure the smoothest possible journey.


Hire and train the right people.

Ever hear the term “you’re only as strong as your weakest link?” Well, that’s true in freight shipping as well, which is why it’s become more important than ever to make sure you’re not only hiring the right people for the job, but also training them to effectively manage various scenarios. A proper understanding of logistics management is a must, as it allows for an adequate assessment of shipment modes. The better your shipment evaluation is, the more cost-effective the results will be. 


Choose quality expedited services.

Just because the service you select is the cheapest, does not mean it will save you the most money. Do your research to best determine which service is right for you. Failing to deliver a shipment on time is extremely detrimental as it can cause customer complaints, production stoppages, and loss of business. Using inconsistent and below-par carriers can end up costing more in the long run.


Final thoughts.

Freightquote by C.H. Robinson’s expedited shipping services help you when you need to get freight to its destination in a quick and timely manner. Freightquote offers expedited freight quotes along with regular quotes so you can easily compare and save. 


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