How to Use a Freight Broker
A freight broker offers services that connect people needing shipping with authorized freight carriers. While a freight broker negotiates and arranges for the shipment of goods, they do not actually handle the shipment at any time.
What to Know About Freight Brokers
While hiring a broker simplifies the freight shipping process, you may not know who exactly will be handling your shipment
Freight brokers never touch your shipment; instead, they contract freight haulers (sometimes multiple freight haulers) to handle the shipping. You want to know which company your freight broker hires, their authority, safety record, insurance options, and reputation to be sure of the safety of your shipment. A broker may not be able to provide this information.
You may not be getting the best price
Brokers charge a commission for their service, which they add on top of the carriers fees. If the broker is able to negotiate a lower price than you would normally receive, you might save money. If not, you may get a better freight quote elsewhere.
You must know who is responsible for payment
Some freight brokers collect payment from you and give the carrier its share. Some brokers arrange for you to pay your freight hauler directly. Be clear on what the payment process is and what methods of payment are acceptable.
Why Hire a Freight Broker?
Consider hiring a freight broker if you are confused about what type of freight services you need and where to find carriers. A broker can advise you on your options for shipping freight and suggest ways to save money. Freight brokers have a network of shipping companies to draw from and can find the carrier most appropriate for your freight shipment. Their large network of carriers allows them to offer a wide variety of services and equipment at a low price.
Freight brokers are great for people and companies who do not have the resources, knowledge, or time to negotiate the best rates and services from multiple carriers. Some freight haulers get their business exclusively from brokers, so hiring a freight broker can give you access to great companies that would otherwise be unknown.