The process of shipping goods, both domestically and globally, is crucial to the success of your business.
For shipments and supply chain management, you should consider outsourcing this task to a freight forwarding company unless you’re an expert. Business owners based in the UK may be unsure of how to proceed when looking for forwarding services.
Many companies are offering their services to companies looking to expand, but not all of them will be the right fit for your company. You can narrow down your search by keeping these five tips in mind when you are doing your research.
1. The Pricing Structure Should Be Transparent
You’ll likely ask for a free quote from a freight forwarding company before partnering with them. The fact that they take days to respond is already an indication that something is amiss.
However, even if you get a price and book your shipment, the final price may be higher than what you agreed to.
The reason for this is that forwarders aren’t transparent about their hidden charges and want to attract clients by offering low quotes. You should be made aware of fuel surcharges and brokerage fees in advance rather than discovering them later.
2. An Extensive Service List Is Essential
You might not be familiar with all the benefits associated with freight forwarding if you’re new to the concept.
There should be a wide variety of services offered by a freight forwarding company that is trustworthy and efficient. A good freight transport company should specialise in all forms of transportation, including air, sea, and road.
To achieve the best results, forwarders use customised solutions for every client and often combine several modes of transport.
It is your forwarder’s responsibility to negotiate with the carrier to get the most competitive rates, prepare documentation for every shipment, arrange to the warehouse, and provide you with accurate tracking information.
3. Insurance For Cargo Is Non-Negotiable
You shouldn’t waste your time talking to freight forwarders who don’t include cargo insurance. Regardless of how big or small your shipment is, it’s a bad idea to skip cargo insurance.
Accidents are relatively frequent with some modes of transportation, such as road transport, and cargo can be lost or damaged. A good forwarder will warn you against skipping the insurance policy due to other risks involved with freight transport.
Furthermore, cargo insurance coverage should also be customised and reflect the cargo’s particulars and the type of freight transportation.
4. Having The Right Experience Is Essential
Hiring a freight forwarder with experience makes sense. However, just because they have spent years working in the industry doesn’t mean they have an impressive portfolio.
Possibly you need assistance with hazardous and bulky cargo shipping, but their primary focus is domestic road freight. To get the best freight forwarding service, you need to work with a company that has developed and tested strategies in your business’s specific area. In speaking with a forwarding agent, they should be able to outline what to expect in advance.
You should ask how many carriers the company partners with and how their experience matches your needs. There is a possibility that the forwarder is reputable, but he or she is still unable to handle your request.
5. Providing Excellent Customer Service Is Essential
Shippers can experience stress and sleepless nights when it comes to cargo shipping. It’s impossible to predict delays at ports or accidents on the road, yet these things happen. It is the responsibility of your freight forwarder to notify you as soon as possible if your shipment is running late.
The best freight forwarders offer excellent customer service and are always eager to answer questions from clients. You must remember that a forwarder who is inattentive to their clients likely has the same attitude toward their cargo as well.
How To Choose The Best Freight Forwarding Company In The UK
When choosing a freight forwarder for your business, you need to be aware of a few facts. It is not uncommon for shipping companies to encounter complications during their operations. There is always the possibility of rerouting and changing strategies.
It is also the responsibility of freight forwarders to ensure the cargo is safe, but not to cause delays. It’s still a recipe for disaster when there are constant issues and a lack of communication. It may be a wise decision to switch to a different freight forwarding company in such a case.
Furthermore, don’t forget that cargo insurance is important and that the right forwarder for one business might not be right for yours. You should therefore do your research and rely on your instincts.