Freight Forwarders: Key Things To Look For

A: When looking for a freight forwarder, a shipper really needs to ask, are they going to get personalized attention? Is this going to be just another shipment of millions of shipments that a company is handling for them? Or is a company like Hawthorne Global really going to get to know the customer, and get to know those products?  They also need to know what is the global reach of this freight forwarder. Do they have relationships all over the globe in every major port city in the world to be able to arrange efficient transportation, efficient shipping out of those ports, and then into the US for custom import? It also helps if you’re using a freight forwarder that has a customs brokerage office with it as well. In that case, you can make sure that your shipping is synchronized well with the customs paperwork so that once everything gets into port, it is cleared timely and avoids any kind of delays and any types of inspection that will add cost and time to your shipments. Hawthorne Global is part of a consortium of companies that has a global network. We have a local office in Houston. We’re very focused on our customers. We can provide personalized attention. But we also have the global reach of having partnerships in over 100 different port cities across the world. So we can arrange transportation and customs clearance from any point in the world to any other point in the world and we can do so with a very personalized customer experience.

How to Choose a Freight Forwarder that Meets Your Unique Needs

Global commerce continues to expand and evolve so the need for shipping services that are both reliable and efficient is critical. Freight forwarders play a pivotal role in enabling international trade. They ensure that goods are transported safely, securely, and efficiently from origination to the final destination. However, finding the right freight forwarder for your unique business needs can be daunting. There are so many freight forwarders in Houston alone—how do you choose the right one? We pride ourselves on being an honest and transparent organization. We like to educate and inform the public, even if you don’t choose to go with our company. So, let’s go thru the things you need to consider when choosing a freight forwarder and how you can avoid major issues.

What is Freight Forwarding?

The first thing we need to do is define what a freight forwarder is. After all, how are you going to know what to look for if you don’t know what freight forwarding entails? As your business expands you will likely be shipping products nationwide or even internationally. This is where freight forwarders are critical for trade. A freight forwarder is a company that specializes in transporting goods by air, sea, and land. They also provide a variety of services to ensure your products arrive at the final destination on schedule and without damage. When choosing a freight forwarder, it is important to consider your business’s specific needs. For example, if you are shipping large or heavy items, you will need a freight forwarder that has experience shipping these types of goods. You will also want to consider how often you will be shipping these goods and find a freight forwarder that can accommodate that frequency. Additionally, be sure to get quotes from multiple freight forwarders so that you can compare costs and services for the best deal. Once you have chosen a freight forwarder, be sure to indicate your shipping deadlines and any special instructions for handling your products in detail. By working closely with your freight forwarder, you can ensure that your products are shipped safely and on time, every time.

Top Three Things To Look For

There are a few key things to look for when choosing a freight forwarder to ensure that your business needs are met. First, you’ll want to make sure that the company has experience shipping products similar to yours. If they’re not familiar with your industry, how can they be familiar with the unique challenges they’ll have to face? This could cause delays or other logistical problems down the line. Second, you’ll want to dig deep into their reviews. How was their customer service with other clients overall? Sure, there will always be some bad reviews but are they isolated or the norm? You don’t want to work with a company that is habitually inefficient, unresponsive, or unreliable. No one is perfect but the easy advice is—”make it make sense.” If they lean more toward having poor customer service, odds are you will get the same. This last one should not be taken lightly, we’ll explain why. Look at their financial stability and ability. You will be entrusting thousands of dollars of your products into their care. If they are dealing with a potential bankruptcy on their hands—your goods are at risk. Also, let’s say they fail to make your shipment or don’t have the manpower to do so. If they’re teetering on bankruptcy, you can bet your money was already spent to stay afloat. If they fail to deliver—you’re probably not getting your money back.

Benefits Of Choosing The Right Company

There are many benefits to choosing the right freight forwarder for your business. A good freight forwarder will be able to provide you with several services that can save you time and money. Better Value: A good freight forwarder will have relationships with some of the major shipping companies. They can then offer you discounts and contracted rates with those companies. The relationship they have saves you on shipping costs and helps to avoid delays. More Flexibility: Another thing a good freight forwarder can offer is a full menu of services that are customizable to your needs. They will also offer easy scalability as your business needs fluctuate. Flexibility is a crucial factor as it can save you a lot of headaches and time overall. Experience:  You can never overstate the importance of experience. If you find a freight forwarder with extensive experience handling shipments of all sizes and complexities—that’s a good thing. That experience can prove to be a major asset to you as well if you are new to the world of logistics. Peace Of Mind: When you can tell your service rep exactly what you need and they simply get it done with no excuses or letdowns—that peace of mind is PRICELESS.

The Best Freight Forwarder Is Hawthorne—Hands Down

If you’re new to the shipping industry or aren’t happy with your current freight forwarder, give us a call. We have been leaders in this industry since 1959. We are not just freight forwarders either—Hawthrorne is full-service global logistics operation. With a full spectrum of logistics services including customs brokering, warehousing, drayage services, and transloading services as well, we are a one-stop solution. Contact us today and let us help you take your reach worldwide.  

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