In the history of the freight forwarding industry, there has always been a large focus on “big accounts”. Sales teams for freight forwarding companies are solely focused on getting the biggest accounts they can. But nowadays, there has been a shift toward small businesses. Working with a handful of small businesses provides a surprising number of benefits compared to working with 1-5 huge accounts.
Thirty years ago, the idea of a small business that directly received imports or had exports would have been crazy. But in a digital age that is more connected than ever, every year has seen more small businesses join the international shipping industry. Online retail markets across the world have created billions of dollars for American brands and companies. The entry-level barriers that used to stop small businesses from looking overseas have deteriorated. Now that it is possible for small businesses to send out exports and collect imports, the question for freight forwarding companies is whether or not it is preferable.
Automation in the freight forwarding industry has led to optimization. The minimum capital needed to handle freight forwarding has decreased, which is why many freight forwarders have set more competitive fees for their services. This is the perfect incentive for a freight forwarder to work with a group of many small businesses as opposed to a few large accounts. Not only has automation allowed increased competition to lower costs, but improved shipping strategies also continue to drive the freight forwarding industry.
As stated above, it is now easier than ever for a small business to engage in importing and exporting goods. It is also in the best interest of a freight forwarding company to seek small businesses to bolster their revenue sources. But it also, in a small business’ best interest to trust freight forwarders. Many small businesses have made the mistake of using large national brands for shipping that either overcharge or under-deliver. Consolidation is key for a small business with a fixed budget to succeed in the shipping industry. If a group of retailers are all supplied through the same supplier, consolidation improves efficiency and lowers costs. Large national brands do not offer options or personalized shipping strategies to the degree that freight forwarders can. So for a small business, working with a freight forwarder saves money.
Small businesses provide one very strong advantage to a freight forwarding company: diversification. Long gone are the days where a freighting company should rely on only a few accounts. Having many smaller accounts provides security for freight forwarding companies. Meanwhile, small businesses get years of experience and knowledge about shipping. Many small businesses that are considering international shipping can benefit greatly by having a working partnership with a company that has managed shipping for decades. In many ways connecting your small business to a freight forwarder is a strong win-win.
At Bruning International, we believe that there is no job too big or too small for our team of logistical experts to handle. If you represent a small business or a large industrial company that is looking to improve your shipping strategy worldwide, contact us by using the form below.