Peak season shipping tips.

August 22, 2012

Historically, the freight shipping industry starts hitting peak season in September, kicks into high gear in October and winds down during the first week of November. Most of peak season is a result of holiday inventory demand, however some industries simply have high freight needs during the fall.

For carriers, peak season can keep them busy. It means there is more freight available and they can be selective in getting the right freight and right price. However, for shippers, peak season means more competition, lower carrier capacity, and potentially higher rates.

The good news is it doesn’t have to be that way. Below we have outlined ways shippers can avoid the common pitfalls of peak season and ensure their freight arrives on time: 


Plan ahead.

With manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers all needing to ship during peak season, capacity can be a concern. The more advance notice a shipper can provide, the more likely for carrier availability and a successful shipment, resulting in less stress.


Consider multiple vendors vs. single source.

While relying on one provider can provide a seamless shipping process, it also limits options and contingencies. Multiple carriers provide more possibilities that you may need, if your manufacturing line is behind or there are other unforeseen challenges. Multiple carriers may also allow for service level and transit time choices.

Sourcing multiple carriers can be a headache but online freight service providers can help. For example, our system allows you to optimize a contract carrier by shipping lane. Not only will you know you are getting a competitive rate, but you can also make sure carriers are moving your freight efficiently. Even better, it’s all managed in one place.


Don’t forget Cyber Monday.

Most of the traditional peak freight is built around retail’s biggest day – Black Friday, which is the Friday after Thanksgiving, but they neglect Cyber Monday. More consumers continue to buy products online so make sure to provide for cyber customers by considering fulfillment, or 3rd party warehousing as part of your supply chain.


How Freightquote by C.H. Robinson helps during peak season.

Sometimes the easiest way to ensure your freight is delivered on time and you are getting good rates, is by using a service like Freightquote. Consider the following:

Product rollout.

Peak season is when manufacturers and electronics companies introduce holiday products. Take advantage of our project freight solutions to deliver your new products. This customized plan allows you to leverage all the contract carriers in our network, giving you the best possible solution for your project shipments.

Quality customer service.

We’ve all been there. Something doesn’t arrive on time or you need to change something at the last minute and you just want to talk to a human. Our customer service is staffed from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. central time to get you the answers you need.

Extending special services.

Discussing your peak season shipping demands with one of our freight shipping experts will start you on the path of a successful shipping season. For example, expedited and guaranteed deliveries are services our team can arrange.


Shipping during peak season can be stressful but if you take the steps listed above, you’ll save yourself and your team the headaches. 

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