Navigating B2C freight – arming your business with the right tools

Navigating B2C freight – arming your business with the right tools

The current global environment has been challenging for businesses that have needed to adapt their business model and service offerings to continue to trade throughout the pandemic. Many businesses have introduced eCommerce platforms – as a way to combat lockdowns and restrictions – which has allowed them to continue trading and to stay connected with consumers.

One of the most significant areas that sees change when moving to an eCommerce platform is the business’s logistics. Businesses start needing to manage B2C freight on top of their existing B2B freight. This change presents challenges like shop integration, managing residential deliveries, product returns, packaging, and maintaining customer service satisfaction.

When businesses move to B2C deliveries, one of the biggest priorities is finding Carriers that are structured (and priced) to suit their freight profile – including servicing residential addresses.  

Carriers position themselves – through service and price – to attract industries and businesses that match their ‘ideal’ freight profile. Some carriers may have well-established Air Freight services that allow them to offer competitive rates on satchels and cartons. Whilst their satchel and carton pricing may suit your business, their pallets rates may miss the mark. Other Carriers may have competitive pallet rates but don’t offer carton and satchel services or deliver to certain areas.

“As businesses grow and evolve, it highlights that Carriers are not a “one size fits all” solution and that it is worthwhile introducing multi-Carrier options to ensure the Logistics side of your business is working efficiently.”

As businesses grow and evolve, it highlights that Carriers are not a “one size fits all” solution and that it is worthwhile introducing multi-Carrier options to ensure the Logistics side of your business is working efficiently.

With more and more businesses opting (or being directed) to work from home, Carriers who previously serviced business to business freight are now delivering to more residential addresses than ever before. Not all Carriers are structured to allow for this, so as a result, some Carriers have introduced significant residential pickup and delivery fees as a way to manage this type of freight within their network.

Other Carriers have seen this as an opportunity to expand their fleet and service offerings to allow them to pick up from and deliver to residential addresses with more ease.

A problem area for businesses is capturing accurate freight pricing, which occurs at the consignment creation stage. At this stage, when creating the consignment, businesses are required to nominate whether the pickup or delivery address is residential. If nothing is selected, the freight is assumed to be travelling to and from a commercial premise.

If the freight is residential and nominated as residential, additional surcharges may be built into your pricing, which can change your Carrier options and pricing entirely. Selecting the right Carrier and fields at the time of booking reduces freight delays with deliveries and bill shock when the carrier issues an applicable surcharge that was not captured at the time of booking.

Not checking whether the pickup or delivery address is residential before booking the freight movement can cost a business thousands of dollars in the long run. It’s essential to consider this and introduce a process to ensure you are capturing this data so that your bills reflect your quotes.

Below are some tips to help businesses reduce costs for B2C freight.

  • Before booking, check the address on maps to confirm whether it is a business or residential address (Farms are also classified as a residential addresses)
  • Tick all applicable surcharges when booking your freight to ensure accurate pricing
  • Introduce a multi-Carrier transport management system that allows you to book your freight through a variety of Carrier’s
  • Consult a supply chain specialist to review your freight and locate areas where efficiencies can be made
  • Ask your clients to let you know if their delivery address is residential on your booking forms.
  • Save your locations as you go and note that the address is residential

By arming your team with the right tools to manage your freight, you can create efficiencies across your whole supply chain resulting in improved client relationships, reduced noise and increased savings.

If you found this article helpful and want to learn more about navigating your freight through a pandemic  check out this article here

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