Room on the Truck, Money on the Table: How to Take Advantage of Multi-Pick, Multi-Stop, and Backhaul Opportunities

In an ideal world, every truck would be full and each pallet perfectly packed to make the most of every inch. Unfortunately for shippers, that isn’t always the case. Organizing shipments can be chaotic, wrangling carriers takes time, and customers need their goods yesterday. As a result, trucks go out half full, leaving companies to swallow the costs.

It doesn’t make sense to pay full price for a truck that’s half empty. That’s why multi-pick, multi-stop, and backhaul approaches can be so valuable. By taking advantage of these opportunities, companies can optimize their shipments without jeopardizing carrier acceptance, keeping everyone happy.

How can multi-pick and multi-ship opportunities keep outbound costs down?

Logistics isn’t always as simple as getting things from point A to point B. While direct shipments are the fastest, they’re not necessarily the most cost-effective—forcing shippers to pay the same contracted rate for each truck, regardless of how empty or full that truck is.

By contrast, having multiple point A’s (pick-up points) on route to a mutual point B (drop-off point) helps ensure the load is optimized for the majority of the journey. Alternatively, a truck carrying multiple shipments may make several deliveries along the way before reaching its final destination.

Either way, less money is wasted on empty truck space. The company pays the contracted rate, plus an additional flat fee for each additional stop. In return, they get more freight delivered faster—and at a better overall rate.

Multi-pick and multi-stop opportunities like these can be challenging to do right, because they have the potential to over-complicate things—increasing the risk of late deliveries and forcing carriers to go out of their way. These complications can make carriers less likely to accept a load. But as researchers at MIT’s Center for Transportation and Logistics found, shippers can increase the likelihood of carriers accepting loads by utilizing effective route planning strategies, such as clustering, that reduce out-of-route miles.

Why consider backhaul opportunities for inbound freight?

When a carrier transports freight from one side of the country to the other, the driver’s journey doesn’t end when they reach their destination. They still have a long drive back again. And if the truck is empty, those miles are empty, too.

Carriers don’t like paying for empty miles. Shippers can take advantage of the necessity of these journeys by negotiating competitive rates for backhauls (freight that’s transported from the truck’s destination back to it’s point of origin).

Finding backhaul opportunities can be tricky. Many brokers charge hefty hidden fees, making it impossible for shippers to negotiate the best deal.

By partnering with an experienced logistics provider like CTSI-Global, companies can skip the middleman. We leverage our deep relationships with trusted carriers to get rates companies won’t find elsewhere.

Embrace every opportunity to save

Optimizing shipments is easier with a powerful transportation management system (TMS).

CTSI-Global’s fully integrated TMS applications allow shippers to quickly select optimal routes, modes, and carriers for every load. Load optimization tools make it simple to identify and take advantage of multi-pick, multi-stop, and backhaul opportunities, giving companies more flexibility—and more chances to save.

Don’t let another truck go out half empty. Find out more about our industry-leading TMS solution today.

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