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A Few Tips for Freight Brokers on Finding Loads

Main Drivers of the Freight Brokerage Industry - Top Companies in the Niche

A freight brokerage company provides business-defining services for any type of client company seeking to efficiently ship goods either locally and globally. It does that by connecting numerous available carriers, which gives clients a wide choice of cost-efficient options.

With this in mind, a company manager or an entrepreneur is usually fast to put “top freight brokerage companies 2021” into the Google search. However, plainly picking a company that’s in the first position of the top wouldn’t be a very smart way to choose your provider.

There are numerous underlying factors to consider if you want to pick a provider that fits your individual needs perfectly. So let’s dive into some details and assess the major aspects of a bunch of top freight brokerage companies in 2021.

What is a Freight Brokerage and How Does it Work?

Providers of freight brokerage services, basically, help bridge the gap between shipping clients and contractor carriers. This involves all the freight management that allows to safely, timely deliver shipments to their rightful destinations.

A big part of this management is adjusting shipper-carrier communication - this includes handling negotiations, shipment routes’ planning, full route freight tracking, and other managerial tasks.

One important detail, though, is that by taking up the responsibility for the freight, a freight brokerage provider doesn’t really get to own the shipped goods. However, they must be present and put their specialized knowledge into every other stage of the whole process. In the long run, the involvement of a reliable provider results in fewer freight damage risks, optimized delivery terms, and an all-around boosted supply chain.

How to Pick a Reliable Freight Broker the Right Way?

There are a number of factors and aspects you should pay attention to when picking a high-quality provider. Right off the bat, they must be able to maintain flexible collaboration as well as be willing to go the extra mile to fit your particular conditions.

Still, there is more than that. Your freight broker of choice must surely be in-depth experienced, easy to communicate with, and transparent. Some specific things you should pay attention to include the following.

Is the considered provider properly licensed?

A provider’s rates and working capacities are important, but the sole operation of a freight brokerage company in the market must be properly licensed. So make sure to check all the required licenses first and assess the general reliability of the company second.

To get into the know on all the necessary operating licenses, you can use the official website of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA for short). It conveniently packs all the proper regulations by region and other aspects.

Is the underlying insurance policy favorable enough?

Your provider of choice must be properly insured as well. Just the fact of having insurance coverage of some sort is useless. A company must offer insurance policies that bring the most benefit to you. It also should be willing and ready to clarify any tiny detail of the given insurance.

In particular, clarify the rate interest a client shipper gets, ask for an insurance certificate that can validate the insurance policy in hand, as well as the interest on deductibles you will be getting.

Are all compliance details and certifications in place?

A freight brokerage's affiliations and accreditations might assist you to figure out if the freight and logistics company you're working with is well-known. Certifications back up the company's claims, and the credentials will indicate their legal compliance. EPA SmartWay Carrier, IANA, and TIA are the first and foremost certifications you should look for on the provider’s official website.

Is the provider really well-known?

The top freight brokerage firms will have established a solid reputation through many years of service. While there may be some up-and-coming freight brokerage hopefuls, those with a proven track record are significantly more reliable. Examine the freight brokerage's operational model to see if their procedures are appropriate for your demands.

How financially stable is the company?

While there is no shortage of enterprises in need of freight brokers, not all freight brokerage firms are financially sound. The financial stability of the brokers who move your freight should be a worry, as it would be undesirable if the brokerage collapsed as a result of their poor financial situation, putting your freight in jeopardy.

Does the service quality match modern standards?

Can your provider of choice really suit the major needs of your industry? Examine their systems and internal processes to see if they have all they need to give great service. When analyzing this aspect of your broker, you may also ask for references and opinions from recent consumers.

Does the provider have an established TMS?

When looking for a freight brokerage firm, don't neglect TMS technology. Providing the greatest level of transportation-related services necessitates the use of good management software. It also provides insight into the operations, which is useful in determining whether there is an opportunity for expansion if you join with a specific freight agency. Choose a brokerage that has a solid TMS system in place.

Top 10 Freight Brokerage Providers Right Now

The freight brokerage industry is a competitive one. Any company with a stable foundation and a reputation to match, as well as a wide range of services and competitive pricing, could be the right freight brokerage for you.

Here are the top providers that we can confidently recommend and their specifics of the operation.

C.H. Robinson Worldwide for continuous and extensive shipments

freight-providers-1 C.H. Robinson Worldwide is the world's largest and most profitable freight brokerage firm up to date. C.H. Robinson, which is ranked 191st on the Fortune 500 list of top firms, has been in the freight brokerage business for nearly a century. The company has contracts with over 66,000 transportation providers and operates across four continents.

The company works with:

  • Expedited and air freight
  • LTL Dry van cargo rail intermodal
  • Flatbeds
  • Transporting heavy loads
  • Bulk loads on tanks that have been refrigerated

Profits made: $1,517.1 M

Total Net Value: $11,312.6 M

Advantages:

  • Dependable freight brokerage
  • Strong goodwill in the sector with a long history
  • A diverse range of services
  • Analyze the supply chain
  • Consolidation of freight
  • Warehousing

Drawbacks:

  • Expensive truckload services
  • Ocean rates

Rates:

  • Available upon request

Redwood Logistics for intuitive management and tracking of freight via specialized tech

freight-providers-2 Redwood Logistics, founded in 2001, is a modern provider of freight moving and management solutions. The headquarters of Redwood Logistics is in Chicago, Illinois.

The company works with:

  • Dry van truckloads (LTL)
  • Refrigerated flatbeds
  • Transporting heavy loads

Profits made: $119 M

Total Net Value: $804 M

Advantages:

  • Diverse collaboration options
  • Efficient tech-based freight brokerage

Drawbacks:

  • No extra shipping options

Rates:

  • Available upon request

XPO Logistics for up-to-date shipments with all underlying details

freight-providers-3 Based in Greenwich, Connecticut, XPO Logistics is a global logistics and supply chain solutions provider. XPO Logistics is a relatively new brokerage firm, having been founded in 2011.

The company works with:

  • Air and expedited delivery are available.
  • LTL and rail intermodal
  • Truckloads of dry vans
  • Refrigerated and flatbeds
  • Transporting heavy loads

Profits made: $511 million

Total Net Value: $2,706 million

Advantages:

  • Extra shipping services fragile freights
  • Sturdy tech stack for integrations

Drawbacks:

  • Established in 2011
  • Potential lack of market experience

Rates:

  • Available upon request

Total Quality Logistics for custom freight management

freight-providers-4 Total Quality Logistics (TQL) was founded in 1997 as a privately held freight brokerage service. TQL is based in Cincinnati, Ohio, although the company delivers services across the United States.

The company works with:

  • LTL rail intermodal
  • Truckloads of dry vans
  • Flatbeds for refrigerated freight
  • Transporting heavy loads
  • Tanks with bulk loads

Profits made: $736 M

Total Net Value: $4,138 M

Advantages:

  • Reliable tech stack
  • Convenient dashboard for carriers

Drawbacks:

  • No air freights
  • Expedited freights

Rates:

  • Available upon request

MODE Transportation for smaller freights

freight-providers-5 Mode Transportation is a one-stop, neutral-mode, light-asset-based freight brokerage company. MODE Transportation was created in 1989 and is headquartered in Dallas, Texas.

The company works with:

  • Air and expedited delivery are available.
  • Intermodal rail, LTL, dry van truckloads
  • Parcels

Profits made: $287.2 M

Total Net Value: $2,100 M

Advantages:

  • Official FMCSA license
  • Less-than-truckload freight opportunities
  • FMCSA-licensed
  • Extra parcels

Drawbacks:

No refrigerated freight support

Rates:

Available upon request

Coyote Logistics for cost-efficient supply chain in accordance with modern standards

freight-providers-6 Coyote Logistics is known for providing customers with innovative freight solutions that are flexible, multimodal, and highly scalable. With a large number of quote inquiries, it is quickly climbing the ranks and approaching the top of all freight brokerages.

The company works with:

  • Intermodal rail, LTL, and dry van truckloads
  • Refrigerated freights
  • Flatbeds
  • Transporting heavy loads

Profits made: $550 M

Total Net Value: $4,280 M

Advantages:

  • Good insurance options
  • On-time shipment deliveries

Drawbacks:

  • No specialized or extra shipping management services

Rates:

  • $4.40 per mile

Echo Global Logistics for small- and medium-scale shippers

freight-providers-7 Echo Global Logistics is a transportation and supply chain management company. Echo Global Logistics, based in Chicago, Illinois, was created in 2005 with the goal of making transportation management easier.

The company works with:

  • Air and expedited delivery are available.
  • LTL and rail intermodal
  • Truckloads of dry vans
  • Flatbeds for refrigerated freight
  • Transporting heavy loads
  • Tanks with bulk loads

Profits made: $393.2 M

Total Net Value: $1,936.7 M

Advantages:

  • Fits long-term and single-time freight purposes
  • Tech-based supply chain system

Drawbacks:

  • No extra services for special types of freight

Rates:

  • Available upon request

J.B. Hunt Integrated-Capacity Solutions for high-quality trucking

freight-providers-8 J.B. Hunt ICS offers alternative transportation services that help multimodal supply chain partners be more efficient. J.B. Hunt Integrated-Capacity Solutions is based in Lowell, Arkansas, and was founded in 1961.

The company works with:

  • Air and expedited delivery are available.
  • LTL and rail intermodal
  • Truckloads of dry vans
  • Refrigerated flatbeds
  • Transporting heavy loads
  • Tanks with bulk loads

Profits made: $165 M

Total Net Value: $1,658.2 M

Advantages:

  • Beneficial less-than-truckload options
  • Has its own authentic trucking network

Drawbacks:

  • No parcel delivery

Rates:

  • Available upon request

Landstar System for entrepreneurs and independent businesses

freight-providers-9 Landstar System is a transportation company. Your freight will be delivered from Jacksonville, Florida, by independent freight agencies, third-party capacity providers, and leased owner-operators. The company was established in 1988.

The company works with:

  • Air and expedited delivery are available.
  • LTL and rail intermodal
  • Truckloads of dry vans
  • Flatbeds
  • Transporting heavy loads
  • Tanks with bulk loads

Profits made: $325 M

Total Net Value: $1,950 M

Advantages:

  • Freight safety as the top priority
  • Cost-efficient small freight handling

Drawbacks:

  • Legacy warehouse capacities

Rates:

  • Available upon request
  • Worldwide Express for large enterprises

Worldwide Express, a prominent provider of FTL, LTL, and parcel delivery, was founded in 1995.

freight-providers-10 This freight brokerage firm is based in Dallas, Texas.

The company works with:

  • Air and expedited delivery are available.
  • LTL
  • Truckload in a dry van
  • Flatbeds for refrigerated freight
  • Parcels with a lot of weight

Profits made: $360 M

Total Net Value: $1,650 M

Advantages:

  • Numerous shipping service options
  • Top-of-the-line air freight

Drawbacks:

  • Somewhat weaker tech stack

Rates:

  • Available upon request

Save Time, Costs, and Effort Collaborating with Freight Brokerage Providers

This article includes a list of some of the greatest freight brokerage firms available. All of these businesses provide long-term, high-quality services. You may rest assured that your freight is being handled by competent specialists with their assistance. Nonetheless, the ideal company for you may not be the best firm for everyone else.

It all relies on your business and its requirements. You may choose the best freight brokerage business for you by examining the elements stated above as well as your individual preferences. If you're wanting to grow your own freight brokerage firm, read our article on how to manage a successful freight brokerage firm.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a freight brokerage company?

A freight brokerage company is a company that connects a shipper with items to convey with an authorized motor carrier. They assist with navigation and supply chain stages to guarantee that cargo arrives securely at its destination.

Is there a demand for freight brokers?

Yes. As the market evolves, the demand for freight brokers is expanding. Starting and running a freight brokerage firm is a lucrative and promising vocation.

Who is the biggest freight broker?

C.H. Robinson is the largest freight broker in the world, with net revenue of roughly $1.5 billion.

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