Why is choosing the best freight forwarding company so important? Picking a freight fowarding company that cannot meet deadlines can be a very expensive decision, which can be avoided if you approach the selection process in a more systematic manner.
Before you entrust your valuable goods to a cargo shipping operator, you should go through a checklist, covering all key factors that could prove decisive.
Only top freight forwarding companies that check all the boxes should be taken into final consideration, since even a single liability represents an unnecessary risk.
Here is a list for you of the key features you should consider in order to choose the best freight forwarding company for your shipping needs:
- Brand history & reputation
Do some research on the background and track record of the freight forwarding companies you consider to ship your cargo, and you will quickly learn to distinguish between reputable providers and aggressive pretenders. Do not limit your scope to the official websites, as you can often learn more about actual performance on third party websites such as blogs, forums and verified reviews where shippers and importers share their own experiences.
- Modes of transportation
Depending on your exact needs and the shipping route of your cargo, multimodal transportation solutions may be required for your project cargo. It is wise to check which freight forwarding companies offer multimodal transportation services, and take advantage of a large network of ocean, air and trucking carriers, before you make a commitment. That way you will be spared the stress of having your shipment stuck in a warehouse for days.
- Network connections
Top freight forwarding companies partner with the best freight carriers in many different countries, which is why they are capable of delivering on time regardless of the distance. Intricate knowledge of international markets and their specific conditions is another valuable asset that can affect the quality of service.
- Warehouse space quality
Very often, it is necessary to store the goods for a period of time during the voyage. Therefore it is important that your selected a top freight forwarding company that has sufficient warehousing facilities at his disposal in critical locations. It is not just about the warehouse space either, you will also want to make sure that the warehouse is temperature-controlled and has proper ventilation.
- Delivery times
Time is always in short supply in business, and you cannot afford long delays when you are sending goods over long distances. Freigh fowarding companies that offer faster delivery times have a significant advantage and are sometimes worth considering even if their service is relatively costly.
However, if you are comfortable with a longer delivery cycle, you should prioritize other factors such has shipping cost.
- Shipment tracking
Container tracking in real time via GPS technology greatly improves safety and allows the shipper to have a complete peace of mind. Top freight forwarding companies almost always include this option to track and trace your shipments in real time. So there is no reason to settle for anything less. Make sure you ask the prospective freight forwarding company whether their containers or trucks can be tracked or not.
- Prices and bulk discounts
Of course, money matters a lot, particularly if you are shipping commercial cargo. Seemingly small differences add up over time, and when all other factors are equal, you will always want to take the most affordable freight rates. Some freight forwarding companies can even offer discounts to large-scale customers, which can provide additional financial relief and tilt the math in your favor.