What is a Freight Broker?
Updated: Feb 6
What is a freight broker and when should I use one?
– What is a freight broker?
– When do I need a freight broker?
– How do I find great freight brokers near me?
It’s a Great Day to be in Logistics! Everything you touch must be shipped, there are so many moving parts that it’s easy to drop the ball. Miscommunications, delays, and freight damage can cost you big time.
For shippers, as you grow your operation and ship more freight, you might not have time or the staff to maintain your quality standards. And as a freight carrier, you need reliable access to freight so you can boost your earning potential. No matter which end of the equation you’re on, you might need to work with a freight broker.
What is a freight broker?
A freight broker is a middleman between shippers and carriers. Instead of taking possession of the freight, the broker facilitates communication between the shipper and the carrier. They’re the ones making sure the handoff goes smoothly between carriers and shippers, and that freight arrives safely, on time.
Shippers like working with freight brokers because they have a single point of contact from point A to point B while their freight moves to its destination. Working with a broker eliminates the messy process of negotiating with a carrier, planning routes, and tracking freight. Carriers also like working with freight brokers to optimize their routes and minimize deadhead miles, boosting their earnings in less time.
Freight brokers use their expertise to improve delivery times, prevent damage, and increase your supply chain efficiency. These brokers offer lower rates because they combine the freight volume of all the shippers they work with, negotiating lower rates that they pass on to their customers.
When do I need a freight broker?
If you’re shipping freight right now without a problem, it might not be the right time to bring on a freight broker. It depends on your business and industry. But if you’re looking to improve your shipping process, a freight broker may be able to help in these three situations.
1. Cost reduction
Worried about costs? You aren’t alone. Shippers live and die by their margins, and cost reduction is one of the most popular reasons shippers hire freight brokers.
Freight brokers are experts at freight. They have the experience and connections to optimize your supply chain, finding easy wins that slash your costs—passing the savings on to you.
Plus, freight brokers are consultants. You can bring them on to help you as needed, so there’s no need to hire in-house employees to handle your shipping. Flock Freight does this with our experienced team of logistics experts and cloud-based computing, speeding up the shipping process to save you even more money.
Every business wants to grow. But if you’ve grown too quickly and have a hard time managing freight, you might need a freight broker. A freight broker steps in and lends a helping hand to your logistics when you’re up to your eyeballs in work.
If you need to process a huge influx of freight in a short window of time, a freight broker has the expertise to handle it for you. It’s a great solution for seasonal businesses, too.
Avoid speed bumps as you scale your business. Use a freight broker to consult you as needed when you’re at capacity. Flock Freight can remove the overwhelm of shipping freight when you need us so you’re always covered.
3. Time and quality
Time is literally money in the world of shipping. If your freight isn’t delivered on time, it can have serious consequences for your entire supply chain. A freight broker will work with carriers to optimize their route, eliminating costly delays.
Plus, freight brokers have procedures in place to minimize any damage to your cargo. If you’re shipping fragile, time-sensitive freight, a freight broker can get you to the finish line without the headaches.
How do I find great freight brokers near me?
A freight broker’s location doesn’t matter as much as their qualifications. Whether you choose someone down the street or across the US, use these three factors to sift through freight broker companies and find the right partner for your business.
You’re entrusting a freight broker with your livelihood. Moving your business’s products is a big responsibility, and that means you need to hire a company with experience.
Research potential brokers. Look at their website, reviews, and social media. Are they established and reputable? Do you trust them? If your gut is saying no, move on to the next freight broker. You need someone you can trust.
Be on the lookout for freight brokers with specialized experience, too. The more they know about your industry, the better. Specialization means they’re more familiar with your business, and that means they can find more quick wins to save you time and money.
2. Licensed, bonded, and insured
Every freight broker is legally required to be registered with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). To be registered, you must also be bonded and insured.
You always want to make sure your freight broker is licensed by the FMCSA. This will protect your business in the event of fraud or damages.
3. Carrier partnerships
Remember, the freight brokers themselves won’t be taking possession of your freight. They’re finding carriers for your freight as a third-party. That means you need to trust your freight broker’s judgment to choose a reliable, safe carrier.
When you’re evaluating freight broker companies, ask them how they choose their partner carriers. You want to make sure they’re checking for safety first, as well as quality and speed.
How to you become a freight broker?
TranMazon® has an exclusive training platform service that offers job seekers access to the best freight broker jobs, opportunities, and training in the industry.
Yes, it is worth becoming a freight broker. This career can be lucrative and can bring a significant amount of flexibility since you own your own business. Trucks are responsible for getting the majority of the U.S.'s food, clothing, and other products where they need to go, so there is no shortage of business for freight brokers.
Becoming a freight broker can be very exciting, our freight broker training will help you learn the skills you need to be a successful Freight Broker or Agent. From licensing and operations to sales and marketing, you'll learn the basics of how to run a domestic freight brokerage or agency in the United States.