If you have expanded your business and started shipping products overseas, chances are that you will need help in the process. I’m not saying that you might not be able to handle all the work that needs to be done when it comes to producing and preparing your products. I am simply saying that the shipment process might be a bit more complicated than you might have thought, which means that you might need help in the area of freight forwarding.
Well, who better to provide you with the help you need than an excellent freight forwarder that you can start working with? I am quite certain that you already understand why using the services of freight forwarding companies is not only beneficial, but also pretty much necessary if you are shipping your products internationally. So, if you weren’t exactly sure what kind of help you need when it comes to those international shipments, now you know. You need freight forwarders.
While you were probably aware of that already, chances are that there’s stills something bothering you about this whole process. In simple words, you might not be exactly sure how to find and hire the perfect company for this job. There are undoubtedly quite a lot of those out there and I can completely understand if you are confused about the whole process of choosing the right company for you.
This is most definitely not a decision that should be made on the spur of the moment, which means that you will need to take your time to do proper research and figure out precisely which firm to hire. Of course, during the research, you will have to take some specific factors into consideration in order to actually be able to determine which freight forwarding company might be right for you. If this is your first time searching for these services, there’s a fair chance that you don’t really know which factors I am talking about, so let me tell you about those.
Certifications & Credentials
First things first, you should check whether the company you are thinking of hiring is properly certified. It should go without saying that working with uncertified firms isn’t quite a good idea. Checking the credentials of your potential candidates will help you understand if a particular freight forwarder has the right skills and qualifications to handle your shipping needs. Additionally, this way you will also find out whether they have gone through necessary trainings and whether they meet security requirements. Consequently, you’ll trust your products to the best, most qualified companies.
This is what freight forwarders precisely do: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freight_forwarder
After checking whether certain candidates are properly certified and whether they have the necessary skills, you should proceed to doing some more detailed research. One of the most significant factors to take into account during said research is their experience. As you already understand, experience is significant in every single business out there, and this one is most definitely not an exception.
If you end up working with inexperienced freight forwarders, you will quickly find yourself being unhappy with the services that they are providing. This can further lead to you losing your clients, which is certainly something you would want to avoid at all cost. After all, if you start losing clients, your whole business will be in jeopardy and I am sure that you don’t want that to happen. So, make sure to check how experienced particular companies actually are before hiring them.
Reputation is another rather significant factor that you should keep in mind. Hiring experienced, yet ill-reputed, freight forwarders won’t do you any good. If their previous clients are complaining about their services, chances are that you will find yourself in a similar situation rather soon after hiring such a company. On the other hand, if people are generally happy with the services that specific freight forwarders are providing, then you will probably be happy with those as well.
In case you don’t know how to check their reputation, don’t worry. Doing this isn’t that difficult. All you have to do is either talk to some of their previous clients directly, or read some online reviews and comments that those people might have written. Either one of these steps will help you determine their reputation, and the best thing to do, if possible, would be to take both of them. If that’s not an option, though, you should be able to get the information you need by taking only the second step and reading online reviews.
Whatever it is that you are selling, you probably want the company you hire to be able to deliver those goods to your clients rather quickly. Since we are talking about international shipping here, you need to be patient and reasonable about the actual delivery times, and so do your customers. Still, this doesn’t mean that you should led people wait for an extremely long time, which is why you should talk about those delivery time frames in advance.
Timely pickup and delivery is extremely important for every business that ships its products. So, don’t forget to talk to potential freight forwarding companies about the delivery times and make sure that they are capable of meeting the deadlines and delivering your goods in a timely manner. The bottom line is that talking about this before making any hires is rather significant, which is why you should never skip that step.
Of course, there is another rather important factor that you will have to consider if you want to feel all the benefits of using freight forwarding services, such as those you can read about here. I am talking about the fact that you need to find a company that will be able to handle a specific volume of goods and shipment assignments. Now, this volume depends on how large your business actually is and how many international shipment assignments you will actually have. The point is, though, that you need to check this in advance, so that you don’t find yourself unable to meet your client’s demands afterwards.
The cost of these services is also something that you should take into consideration. Sure, you cannot expect freight forwarding services to cost virtually nothing and you should definitely be ready to pay a good price if you want high quality, but here’s the thing. There is also no need for you to let anyone rip you off and charge too much if that’s unnecessary. So, you should compare the prices offered by several different candidates, so that you know how much this would cost on average.
Once you figure out the average cost, you can feel free to eliminate any of those candidates that are extremely expensive. Of course, keep in mind that making this decision by considering the price and nothing else is not quite a good idea. This simply means that you should keep all the other factors in mind as well while doing those price comparisons.
Types Of Products
If you really want to find a company that will provide you with the best possible freight forwarding services, then you will have to check out whether they have worked with your types of products in the past. If they don’t have experience shipping your particular products, or similar ones, chances are that they might not know how to do it safely. So, make sure to check this before going any further.
Apart from all this, you should also check the quality of their customer service. If a particular company allows you to always be in touch with the agent that’s handling your cargo, then their customer service is truly exceptional. On top of that, you need the company to be responsive and ready to address any concerns that you might have, as well as answer any questions.
The post 8 Things To Consider When Choosing Freight Forwarding Companies appeared first on The Startup Magazine.