Enhanced small parcel shipping is becoming more important due to the challenge presented to shippers by the big two, UPS & FedEx, namely increased complexity in rating. Now that dimensions apply to all size boxes, it’s not as easy as it used to be to determine what carrier to use. There are some great alternatives to UPS & FedEx on smaller sized shipments, especially if they are being shipped to residential addresses, which is often the case with increasing volumes due to ecommerce.

The Post Office has some great service options such as Cubic Pricing and Commercial Plus pricing. Then you also have the regional small parcel providers such as Eastern Connection, Lone Star Overnight, OnTrac, Spee-Dee Delivery, and US Cargo. Now what used to be the big two, has become big options! The challenge is managing all of this, using the right carrier at the right time, and understanding how this is going to affect not only service levels with your customer, but also the incentive discounts that UPS & FedEx provide in your contracts.

The Power of ShipLinx TMS Light Switch Approach

The ShipLinx TMS system is a fully compliant small parcel manifesting system that is architected for today’s enterprise environments. What many people don’t know is that there are many UPS & FedEx services that are optional for various shipping systems to support. ShipLinx, however, is certified with UPS & FedEx on all of their services. This ensures that as the shipper, you are able to take advantage of every possible small parcel service and you don’t have to use any carrier supplied technology. The other advantage is the way ShipLinx is architected. The engine itself has a fully featured API that allows it to be easily integrated with all of today’s cloud based ERP and ecommerce systems.

Having a system like ShipLinx provides you with various strategic options. You are no longer limited by what your shipping system supports and you don’t have to build in a big budget for change. We have allowed our customers to take a light switch approach and change carriers overnight. One day the system was printing UPS labels and the next day it’s printing FedEx labels or vice-versa. ShipLinx allows you to be nimble which reduces the obstacles to change, and in an environment with rising shipping rates, change is your best friend.

Three Ways to Reduce Costs

Mode optimization is an overlooked piece of the planning functionality in ShipLinx. It does not rely on static weight breaks to determine if a shipment should be shipped via small parcel or LTL, it uses the real rate. We have some customers that have great Hundredweight and Multi-Weight rates with UPS and FedEx. This allows them to use small parcel for shipments that can weigh as much as 800 pounds. These shipments are also less expensive than shipping LTL.

With ShipLinx anywhere-to-anywhere rating capabilities you can take advantage of the mode optimization on your inbound freight. You no longer have to publish a static routing guide that is then distributed to your vendors, instead use the real-time routing guide that is contained in the Supplier Portal. The auto-updater in ShipLinx will ensure that each time a rate is returned, and a decision is made on how a shipment should be routed, that it is using the correct carrier with the correct rate. The auto-updater will lower your overall cost of ownership.

The Three C’s for Enhanced Small Parcel Shipping

ShipLinx TMS is a very powerful system that allows companies to have a strategic advantage in a very complex environment. It provides three very important things:

  1. It’s Complete‘ShipLinx contains all of your small parcel options in one piece of software that can be leveraged across your entire enterprise.
  2. Competitive Pricing‘Carriers know that the more expensive it is to change, the less likely you’ll make it. ShipLinx lowers the cost of change which allows you to instantly change carriers.
  3. Clarity‘You now have total visibility to all of your small parcel volume in one spot. Leverage this data to make more informed, strategic decisions.

When Can I Start?

ShipLinx can complement your existing Small Parcel strategies by replacing your third party system or your carrier supplied system with a true enterprise solution. ShipLinx architecture allows you to deploy it within your firewall to handle high volume shipping locations as well as provide a web-based front end that can be deployed to lower volume locations.

You no longer have to use one system for high volume locations, and rely on the carrier supplied systems for your satellite or remote offices. ShipLinx is built to be your true enterprise solution that can be deployed on premise or cloud based.

If you would like to know how you can get started using ShipLinx, leave a comment below or send me an email with your questions.