How to Lower Your Shipping Freight Costs

Jun 04, 2019 Elizabeth Raw Elizabeth Raw

With the increasing convenience of online shopping, customers are becoming less and less patient. This means businesses need to focus on providing a fast and smooth checkout process, which includes affordable and timely shipping options

But faster shipping is naturally going to be more expensive for both you and your customer, so how do you reduce this cost and continue providing a satisfactory experience? This is also important for businesses who need to ship in supplies and equipment from other locations, which is another expense to add to the list. 

Know the Market

Doing your research and finding the most cost-effective options should be your first step. This means not only knowing about the best shipping companies to use, but also the freight market and current trends. For example, do you know when the peak season is for freight rates?

During Chinese New Year, companies in the country close for the long holiday. This pushes ocean carriers to work at full capacity in order to rush in goods before the holiday begins. Being able to predict trends like this can save you a lot of money, as freight rates tend to change drastically during certain times. 

Schedule Bulk Shipments

If you need new equipment or a top up on supplies throughout the year, it would make sense to invest in one large shipment for the long run than to make numerous small orders. If you’re unable to pay such a large upfront cost, you can use a freight consolidation service to combine your shipment with others. 

This baling wire supplier even offers the service for their customers; you can check them out at It would be wise to follow in their footsteps if you supply your clients with large orders, as it makes the shipping process much more affordable and convenient. 

Know the Best Transportation Method

You don’t have to stick with a single transportation method. If faster or more affordable ones are available, you can use a mix. Discuss the different options with your logistics partner and keep an open mind to different methods. Commonly used transportation methods include truck, air, ocean, rail and a mix of two or more. 

Avoid Less Container Load

LCL (less container load) is when you don’t have enough product to fill a cargo container. This results in additional costs, as the cargo needs to go to a container freight station to be split. Again, consolidating your cargo is the best option, as this allows you to use FCL (full container load) instead. If you need only one co-loader to split one container - you should better use delivery in 10-foot containers.

Find the Right Logistics Partner

Not all logistics partners are made equal and it may be likely that a better partner is available who can secure lower prices from the shipping companies you work with. Ask whether your partner has multiple ocean carrier contracts, as there may be a cheaper one available that is still fast and reliable.


Finally, aim to have full supply-chain visibility from your logistics partner. This not only benefits you as a buyer but also the customers you sell to as they can get better tracking information. 

Elizabeth works for R+R Packaging, providers of biodegradable and eco-friendly packaging materials for businesses within a wide variety of industries.

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