No matter what industry you’re in, customer experience is key to long-term success. One of the greatest threats to the customer experience is with shipping delays. For better or worse, we live in the age of Amazon, which leads customers to expect near-instant delivery of just about anything.
Of course, those of us in the transportation and logistics industry understand that the full supply chain is far more complicated than free two-day shipping leads customers to believe. In the real world of logistics and supply chains, shipping delays are a significant problem. And if you’re not careful, your logistics woes can start to harm your business’s customer experience.
At ASL Forwarding we understand the importance of the customer experience. We help our clients solve their shipping woes through a variety of means.
In today’s blog post we’ll look at how LTL and truckload transportation can help to alleviate logistics frustrations.
Issues Plague Containerized Cargo Transport
Industry insiders know the issues facing containerized cargo transport well, but in case you aren’t dealing with this stuff daily, here’s an overview.
The containerized cargo model (where shipping containers travel by sea, then are unloaded onto trains or onto chassis hauled by semi-trucks) is usually effective and inexpensive. One thing it’s not? Fast. Cargo ship transport is efficient, but it’s slow.
Once containers are offloaded at the port, there are more potential headaches. The industry has undergone a shift in how chassis are delivered, and there are big issues here. Containers (and drivers) often wait in major backlogs for chassis, keeping goods from reaching their destination in a timely fashion.
If you’re interested to learn more about the problems with chassis availability, here’s a good explainer.
The chassis issue has gotten so severe that some owner-operators avoid container work, and some inland intermodal facilities face months-long delays.
LTL and Truckload Transportation Avoid Classic Containerization Issues
LTL and truckload transportation can’t solve the speed of sea freight, but they certainly can solve the other issues we mentioned.
In some situations, you may consider transferring your imported cargo to a trans-load or cross-dock facility near the port of arrival so that you can transfer containerized cargo to traditional shipping via tractor-trailer. This doesn’t avoid all the headaches of chassis backup, but in some cases, it can minimize them.
The biggest gain is for businesses that export overseas, especially inland businesses. By shipping your goods by truck to the coastal port, you can save significant time over containerized shipping via rail or intermodal. Containerizing your goods may cost less, but in trying to get your goods to the seaport by rail, you may get ensnared in the mess of chassis availability.
LTL and Truckload Transportation Save Time (and Even Money)
We’ve already covered how LTL and truckload transportation can avoid some of the headaches associated with container-based intermodal shipping. Now let’s focus on the bottom line.
There are many situations where choosing LTL and truckload transportation in place of containerized shipping saves time. Over-the-road trucking offers faster transit time than rail or ocean, so wherever it’s feasible, it serves as a method of expediting the shipping process.
Not only that, choosing truckload or LTL can save money, too. Here’s one example: we regularly ship truckloads from Canada to Miami for export to Central America and the Caribbean. By choosing truckload shipping for most of the journey, we save customers money and shave three to five days off transit time required for sea transport from Canada to the Caribbean.
ASL Forwarding Is Your LTL and Truckload Transportation Solution
ASL Forwarding has been solving customer experience issues through LTL and truckload transportation for years. If you’d like to learn more about how we can improve your logistics, contact us today.