Have you ever struggled with finding an efficient way to ship those leftover inventory items that don’t quite fill an entire truckload? As a business owner, you know time is money and shipping costs can really add up. Divine Enterprises is here to save you both. We specialize in Professional Transportation of Less-than-truckloads shipping, so you can consolidate those smaller shipments into a single delivery.
What Is Less-Than-Truckload (LTL) Shipping?
Less-than-truckload shipping, or LTL, refers to the transportation of cargo that does not require an entire truckload. With LTL shipping, your items are consolidated with other freight going in the same general direction. This allows multiple customers to share trailer space and is a more affordable option than hiring an entire truck.
How does LTL shipping work?
When you book LTL freight services, your shipment is assigned a unique tracking number so you can monitor its progress. Your items are picked up and transported to a terminal where they are sorted and loaded onto trailers with other freight going to destinations within the same region. The trailer then transports all the freight to the terminal closest to each destination. At the local terminal, the individual shipments are sorted and loaded onto delivery trucks to be dropped off at their final destinations.
The Benefits of Using an LTL Carrier for Your Business
Working with a less-than-truckload (LTL) carrier for shipping your goods offers some compelling benefits for your business. LTL shipping consolidates multiple shipments from different customers onto a single truck, saving you money and time.
1. Cost Savings
LTL shipping spreads costs over many customers, allowing for lower rates than a full truckload. You only pay for the space your cargo occupies, so you’re not paying extra for unused space. LTL also avoids fees for partial truckloads and the costs of handling and transferring cargo between trucks. The more you ship, the more you can save with volume discounts and negotiated rates.
2. Convenient Shipping
LTL carriers pick up and deliver shipments on regular routes and schedules. They handle loading and unloading, freeing up your staff. LTL shipping also provides flexibility since you’re not locked into full truckload minimums. This allows you to ship as little or as much cargo as needed for each delivery.
3. Reliable Transit
Reputable LTL carriers utilize modern tracking systems to monitor shipments in real time. You’ll know where your cargo is every step of the journey. LTL companies also have extensive route coverage to major destinations and can deliver within tight delivery windows. They are experts in handling and consolidating all types of freight.
LTL shipping reduces emissions and wasted space by maximizing cargo space on each truck. Fewer trucks are needed to ship the same amount of freight. LTL carriers also utilize route optimization to minimize miles traveled. These efficiencies make LTL a greener choice for transporting your goods in an eco-friendly manner.
How to Choose the Right LTL Carrier
Choosing the right less-than-truckload (LTL) carrier for your business can save you time, money, and headaches. As an LTL shipper, you have options when it comes to which carrier hauls your freight. But how do you determine which one is the best fit? Here are some factors to consider:
- Experience and reputation: Look for an LTL carrier with many years of experience hauling freight similar to yours. Check their safety rating and customer reviews to determine their reputation.
- Coverage area: Make sure the LTL carrier services all the areas you need to ship to. Some carriers only operate regionally, while others span the entire country.
- Transit time: Compare the average transit times of different LTL carriers to see how quickly they can transport your freight.
- Pricing and flexibility: Get price quotes from several LTL carriers to compare rates. In addition to the base price, consider other fees like fuel surcharges, lift gate charges or residential delivery fees.
- Technology and tracking: Choose an LTL carrier that provides shipment visibility through online tracking and mobile apps
- Sustainability: If environmental sustainability is a priority, opt for an LTL carrier with eco-friendly business practices like freight consolidation, alternative fuel vehicles and recycling programs.
By evaluating these factors, you can find an LTL carrier that suits your specific needs. The right choice will move your freight promptly, professionally and at a competitive price.
Top Tips for Preparing Your LTL Shipments
To ensure your LTL shipments arrive on time and intact, follow these top tips for preparation:
Properly package your goods
Make sure items are securely contained in sturdy boxes that can withstand the rigors of transit. Clearly label each box with its contents and destination. For fragile goods, use ample padding like packing peanuts, bubble wrap or foam inserts. Consider strapping boxes together on a pallet for easier handling. Your careful packaging will prevent damage and make loading/unloading quicker.
Provide detailed paperwork
Supply an accurate bill of lading or shipping manifest listing all items, quantities and weights. Note any special handling instructions. Double check that the delivery address and contact information are correct. Including a packing list inside one of the boxes is also helpful for the recipient. Thorough paperwork allows the carrier to properly classify your freight and charge you the right rate. It also ensures correct delivery of your goods.
Consolidate when possible
If you have multiple small shipments going to the same location, try to consolidate them onto a single pallet. This makes your freight easier to move and may qualify you for lower volume rates. Just make sure all boxes are uniformly sized and securely shrink-wrapped or banded to the pallet. Clearly label each pallet with its contents and destination.
Don’t wait until the last minute to schedule your LTL pickup. Give yourself at least 1-2 business days of lead time, especially for larger shipments. Pre-booking your shipment will help ensure your cargo is loaded for prompt delivery. It also gives you time to address any issues that arise.
Be present for pickup
Have someone available during your scheduled pickup window to answer any questions the driver may have regarding your shipment. Double check that all items listed on your paperwork are loaded before the driver departs. Your presence helps facilitate an efficient pickup and minimizes the chance of errors that could delay your delivery.
So there you have it, by using a professional LTL carrier like Divine Enterprises, you’ll save time, money, and headaches. No more dealing with multiple carriers, chasing down lost shipments or paying outrageous fees. Our experienced team handles all the logistics so you can focus on your business. Consolidate your cargo, reduce emissions, lower costs and have full visibility into your supply chain. Make the smart choice and go with the pros for an easy, affordable LTL solution. You’ll wonder why you didn’t switch to Divine Enterprises sooner.