Importing and exporting goods can take a lot of work even for smaller businesses, especially if they are low on resources. While it can often be cheaper to handle things yourself, using the services of an experienced freight forwarder can, in the long run, save you money and help maintain your reputation in the marketplace.
What is a Freight Forwarder?
A freighter forwarder is an organisation or individual that handles the shipping of goods from one location to another.
They will often have access to a variety of solutions including shipping by land, air and sea and will handle other issues such as permits, documentation and even packaging.
5 Reasons You May Need a Freight Forwarder
A freight forwarder brings a wide array of logistical assets to the table that may benefit your business irrespective of the type of goods you are transporting. There are several warning signs that you are better off switching from handling transportation yourself to hiring the services of a freight forwarder:
- Customers are Complaining
One of the first signs is that customers are beginning to complain. It may be about the length of time to delivery or the fact that they are paying a surcharge on the import or that the goods arrive in a damaged condition.
Without a clear logistical path for importing and exporting goods, you could be leaving a lot to chance. That means you are more likely to encounter issues with deliveries that leave your customers seeing red. Growing complaints can have a significant impact on the reputation of your business, particularly where several customers are in contact with each other and talk regularly.
- The Cost is Rising
While handling imports and exports yourself can seem like the most cost-effective solution, particularly if you are importing into another country the price of doing business can be excessive. You could be paying for extra staff to handle all the bureaucracy and form-filling rather than outsourcing to a logistics company that has those staff already in place.
- Your Approach is Too Narrow
Companies that handle their own transportation can often be confined to what is available to them. They aren’t able to find the most cost-effective approach to delivery because they either don’t have the expertise on board or the budget to expand. This generally leads to a one-size-fits-all approach that tends to cost more in the long run and can be wasteful in other ways.
Switching to a freight forwarder can help you find new approaches that not only get your goods from A to B quicker but could cost you less money.
- A Rising Carbon Footprint
Many businesses are worried about their impact on the environment, most commonly because of tighter regulations. If your carbon footprint is rising, it could be because you are using the wrong transportation methods. Working with a freight forwarding company can help reduce your liability and save the planet at the same time.
- Increasing Customs Issues
Most countries have their individual customs rules that need to be followed and this can be difficult to keep track of if you don’t have expertise and transport to a lot of different places. A freight forwarder will be able to ensure that you have the right paperwork for each location and that delays are kept to a minimum.