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LTL or FTL - Which is the Best Freight Shipping Option?

LTL vs FTL Freight Shipping

No matter the size of your business, logistics is an important arm of your day-to-day operation and helps you utilize your existing supply chain more efficiently. At the same time, efficient logistics and transportation can also help you cut costs and avoid wastage of material and time.

Although there are various modes of transportation available, trucking, especially in the USA, is the most dominant form of transport available. With over $650 million in revenue and more than 3 million trucks on the roads, trucking not only helps connect different American states together but also provides a steady boost to the economy.

Why Is Logistics Important for Your Company?

Even the smallest business has to either transport its merchandise on its own or find a reliable third party logistics (3PL) service provider. In some cases, they might even have to handle reverse logistics, in which case merchandise would have to be returned back to the business. Some of the reasons as to why logistics are important in business, include -

  1. Logistics helps to maintain a steady stream of inflow of raw materials, supplies, etc. for your business and manufacturing units to keep functioning properly
  2. Storage and retrieval is also made easy by logistics, as in many cases, physical supplies and products must be stored and filed properly before being transported further
  3. Finally, Logistics helps you streamline your outflow processes, and whatever transport option you choose, be it land, sea, or air, logistics helps to ensure your items reach their designated destination on time

Whether your businesses' metric for success is customer satisfaction or business expansion, logistics not only helps you to strategically plan resource management but also impacts your day-to-day operations.

FTL vs. LTL Freight - Which One is better for your Business?

FTL vs LTL Freight Shipping Option

If as a business owner, you need to transport more than 100 pounds of goods on a daily basis, you should choose a transportation provider who is not only cost-effective but also gives you customized options for transporting goods. In this article, we will outline the two most common ground freight shipping options available for businesses, and how each one can help you transport better.

  1. FTL Shipping

    FTL shipping, or full truckload shipping, is often chosen when businesses have more than 10 pallets which they need to ship at one time, or when time is of an issue and the packages are high-risk. Most shippers who can accommodate full truck loads cater businesses willing to ship in bulk and the large number and amount of goods being shipped helps to offset the transportation costs involved.

    FTL shipping can be further characterized into Partial Shipping, wherein a business might choose to transfer fewer products but in a dedicated truck.

    Some key points about FTL include -

    • Full truckload shipping is the best way to transport large shipments
    • FTL is ideal when you need to transport fragile or high-risk items
    • FTL shipments are ideal if you want your goods to reach from point A to point B in the fastest time possible
    • FTL shipments generally weigh more than 10,000 pounds
    • Full truck shipments help you save a lot of money by consolidating shipments
  2. LTL Shipping

    Less than truckload shipping, or LTL shipping, is a big boon for businesses that need to transfer fewer goods at a faster pace. Since LTL shipments are moved to truck to truck during transit, it is best to transport good which are either hardy, or are well protected with pallets. Since LTL shipments typically combine multiple shipments for multiple customers, there can be any number of reasons which can cause delays or holdups during the shipment transfer. Some other salient points of LTL shipping include -

    • Shipments between 150-10,000 pounds are generally sent through LTL shipping
    • Trucks transferring LTL shipments make several stops and might perform several rounds of loading/unloading
    • LTL shipping is ideal for small businesses
    • LTL is one of the most cost-effective shipping methods

When Should you Consider One Above the Another?

As you saw above, there are quite a few differences between FTL and LTL shipping. When deciding between LTL vs. FTL shipments, you need to keep in mind quite a few factors and ask the following questions so as to arrive at the correct decision -

  • What is the size of your shipment, and whether it is more than 10,000 pounds or not? Choose FTL if more than 10,000
  • What is your shipping budget? Choose LTL if budget is low
  • How fast do you need the items to be transported? Choose FTL if speed is a concern
  • Are the items you want to transport easily damaged? Choose FTL if your items are easily perishable
  • Are your items sensitive to temperature and need special temperature-controlled trucks? Choose FTL if yes
  • Is it possible to consolidate and palletize your shipment? Choose FTL so you can save costs
  • Is sharing trailer space with other shipments a hindrance? Choose FTL if yes

Choose Outsource2india for Expert Logistics Services

With the rapid pace of globalization and technology growth, supply chain functions also have become increasingly complex. As a result, your strategic decisions to outsource your logistics services can impact your operational costs, operating costs, customer service, and revenue growth.

At O2I, our aim is to help global businesses learn how they can leverage the power of 3PL service providers while connecting them with the best in business. We help you identify, evaluate, quantify, and select ideal third-party relationships while providing exceptional back-office support for all your logistics requirements. We specialize in CRM services for Logistics, Software Development Services for Logistics Management and generating and generating Bills of Lading, as per your requirements.

Do you have more questions about freight shipping or would like to know more about our logistics services for trucking companies?

Contact us right away to get your questions answered!

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