As a shipper, finding the right carrier to transport your freight is essential to the day-to-day operations of your business. But with so many options available to you, it can be challenging to figure out where you should start. So, how can you find carriers for your freight?
USE ONLINE LOAD BOARDS
Online load boards like Cashfreight are some of the easiest ways to find carriers for freight. These load boards allow shippers to post their available loads for carriers to bid on, creating a competitive environment where carriers are incentivized to offer their best rates to win a shipper’s business.
ASK FOR REFERRALS
Another great way to find reliable carriers to transport your freight is to ask for referrals from other business owners. Not only will this get you a carrier quickly but because the other business is already using them, you can also guarantee that they are trustworthy, reliable, and can get the job done.
SEARCH FREIGHT CARRIER DIRECTORIES
You can also use freight carrier directories like Carrier411 to find carriers. These directories provide all sorts of information, from a carrier’s safety record to their insurance and licensing information. You can use all of this data to narrow your search and find a carrier that meets your specific needs.
ATTEND INDUSTRY EVENTS
Though not the most efficient way of doing things, attending industry events like the Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA) Annual Conference and Exhibition can provide a great opportunity to network with carriers and other logistic professionals.
Even though it's not an instant fix, If you have the opportunity to attend an event like this, do it. You’ll make tons of connections with trusted and reliable carriers all over the country.
WORK WITH FREIGHT BROKERS
One of the most traditional ways to find reliable carriers to transport your freight is to work with a freight broker. A freight broker’s job is to connect shippers to carriers and facilitate communication between the two.
Brokers already have relationships with carriers and can negotiate on your behalf, even if using a broker isn’t the cheapest option, it will save you time and ensure that you find the right carrier for the job.
USE SOCIAL MEDIA
Social media platforms like LinkedIn and Facebook can also be invaluable tools that you can use to find good freight carriers. Joining industry groups and networking online can be just as, if not more effective than networking in person, and posting about your freight needs and asking for help may just send your new favorite carrier your way for the very first time.
CONTACT CARRIERS DIRECTLY
You can also try to research carriers on your own and contact them directly. You might be surprised about what you can find all by yourself. If you reach out to a carrier by email or on the phone you’ll be able to express your interest in them, confirm that they have the proper insurance, negotiate rates, and make sure that they are an overall good fit for your business.