How to save on your LTL shipments

Posted by Harriet Mills on Nov 27, 2015 2:09:01 PM

Cut Costs

Don’t let refrigerated LTL costs freeze you out. Here are five ways to reduce expenses.

If your business revolves around refrigerated product, then you know firsthand how important proper logistics can be. Even the slightest inefficiency can lead to lost or damaged product. As a result, you go to great lengths to ensure your refrigerated goods are handled properly and delivered as they should be.

But now you're finding that the costs associated with your refrigerated shipping are actually starting to freeze you out. Are exorbitant costs just a fact of life in the refrigerated LTL business? Hardly. There are several ways you can lower the temperature and the price you pay on your refrigerated shipping, but any solid logistics plan should include these five strategies.

1. Select the proper 3PL. Handling your own logistics can be expensive and time consuming, and not every 3PL has the tools it needs to satisfy the demands of refrigerated LTL. When searching for a 3PL to handle your logistics, look for one that has experience in the refrigerated space and then find a 3PL with the team to see your project through to the end. At Choptank Transport, our team is experienced in the refrigerated space and our team members are also trained to be efficient planners and effective problem solvers. Contact us today with your logistics needs and we’ll find a solution that works for you and your product.

2. Consolidate your loads. Whether this means combining multiple loads of your own product into one shipment or coordinating your loads with those of other companies, load consolidation is an effective way to reduce your LTL costs. Your 3PL should be able to help you find opportunities for consolidation, so be sure to ask about your options.

3. Be flexible with pickup/delivery times. Deadlines are certainly more important when it comes to refrigerated LTL, but if you have some leeway in your schedule it could really help you cut your costs. Work with your 3PL to understand how certain delivery days and times affect your price structure, and then select the option that works best for your product and your bottom line.

4. Negotiate smart. If you feel the price you’re paying for your logistics is too high, maybe it is. Research the market to see what rates are available from other providers and then use this information in your next round of negotiations. Your existing 3PL will be more willing to work with you if they think they may lose your business, and you could end up enjoying a reduced rate or perks of some other type.

5. Look for potential cost-cutting measures on your end. Not every dollar saved has to come from your 3PL. There may be cost-cutting steps you can take in-house as well. Hiring a 3PL instead of handling these duties on your own is a good start, but there’s probably more you can do. One prime cost-cutting measure is to look at your packaging. Is it as efficient as it could be? Your 3PL charges you by space and weight, so the lighter and smaller you can make your packages the better.

We'd like to hear from you. What best-practices do you find most useful to save on your LTL shipping costs?

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To learn more about refrigerated LTL shipping with Choptank Transport, contact us today.

 

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