What is Consolidated Shipping, and What Makes it Worth Considering?

Sarah Fedida
Fetchy Digital Manager. Always here to share with you the best infos
September 9, 2020

There are several different ways to ship products. While some companies choose to ship them individually whenever an order comes through, there’s always the option of consolidated shipping. A consolidated shipment is when several different LTL shipments from different shippers are combined into a single full container(multi-stop truckload) shipment.


There are several benefits to taking this route. One of the key ones is that consolidated shipping allows a shipper to earn a better rate while also optimizing supply chain logistics through saving time and money. There are less shipments made at a reduced cost.


Consolidated shipping is a smart idea for a business that only has a few pallets of smaller shipments and freights they need kept in one bog box. All the small shipments are put in one big box sent to one main destination, and after the small packages a re dispatched for the last mile. As such, shippers can avoid having to pay higher rates by combining them (consolidating them) into a single shipment.


Fetchy has put together this simple guide that breaks down consolidated shipping. We’ll look at what makes it an important and interesting choice for your business. We want you to fully understand what consolidated shipping is and what it means for the freight industry. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the benefits and challenges of this unique shipping method.


Benefits of Consolidated Shipping

·       Cost-Efficient

Consolidated shipping is considered by many to be the most cost-efficient method of shipping. This benefit is also considered to be one of the most important benefits of consolidation. Even if you only use up a half of a trailer when shipping you’ll still need to pay for the entire thing. Consolidation gives you the option to combine several LTL shipments that are going to the same area into a single full truckload shipment. It gives you the option to pay for the space that the freight is taking up, which is more cost-efficient than having a half empty trailer.


·       Reduced Risk of Damage

There’s always the risk of freight getting damaged, despite all of the advancements of freight shipping in recent years. Consolidated shipping offers a more cost-effective method that also reduces the risk of damage. It cuts down on the amount of on-again, off-again handling of products. The freight only needs to move between a shipper, a consolidation center, and the final recipient. With less touch points comes less risk of goods being damaged in transportation.


·       Better Quality Control

Another good benefit of using consolidated shipping is that you get control of the goods sooner. If you receive an alert from quality control that there’s a problem with a product that has been shipped already, you’d typically have to wait for the supplier to issue a replacement. This means that you have no control over the time of delivery for your products. With consolidation, you have better quality control because you can do a QC check as soon as the product enters the warehouse. This leads to a reduction in loss of control and time due to unforeseen issues with the order.

·       Speed to Market

Using consolidated shipping can help to get your freight where it has to be on schedule. A good provider with large freight volumes is able to put together a plan that has your freight on the road faster. That way, your products get to market faster and you’ll start making money from them faster.

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Potential Challenges of ConsolidatedShipping


·       Securing a Carrier

One of the down sides of choosing consolidated shipping is finding and securing a carrier. Given that consolidated shipping is more complex, not every shipping carrier is willing to deal with it. Even if you can find a carrier that is willing to transport consolidated shipments, you should do some extra research. Make sure you know all there is to know about the carrier and that they are charging you a fair rate. Teaming up with an online shipping provider – such as Fetchy – helps to ensure that you get a good rate when choosing a carrier.


·       More Time Needed forPlanning

While this isn’t necessarily a negative, it is true that you have to spend more time planning and organizing with consolidated shipping. You have to be more aware of factors like dimensions, timing, pricing, and other specifics to guarantee that a delivery arrive on time and in one piece.


·       More Time Consuming

Consolidated shipments take more time than standard FTL shipments in other ways too. They take more time because it takes longer to put together something for consolidation, and there is also the deconsolidation process to consider. Before putting together a consolidated shipment, it’s important you understand the process so you can make an appropriate plan.


Is Consolidated Shipping Right forMe?


So, is consolidated shipping right for you? That depends on your business and how much products you ship. If you’re shipping at least 3 packages to the same country, consolidation might save you time and money!

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