Shipping costs are inescapable for many organizations today. Tariffs, technological advancements and other factors can create complications in the shipping process. For this reason, organizations should explore all possible avenues for the most effective shipping costs. However, recent global and business initiatives may force shipping changes in the years to come.
Here are two ways organizations can expect to see their shipping processes impacted in 2020.
Blockchain Lessens Global Shipping Concerns
The verdict is still out for some organizations regarding their full trust in blockchain. Security, scalability, and added complexities remain top concerns for implementing blockchain capabilities into daily operations. However, there could be a substantial advantage for global shipping efforts. For instance, blockchain can significantly reduce bulky paperwork 1 requirements such as bills of lading, sales contracts, and port documents. Sensitive information can also be kept secure, in an encrypted format. Ultimately, organizations can save time and resources by moving to the online environment that blockchain provides.
TradeLens, the digital shipping platform co-owned by IBM and Maersk, was first introduced in early 2018. Now, with heightened tensions regarding shipping methods, more organizations are turning to TradeLens as part of their global shipping solution. TradeLens has recently been used as a fruitful avenue to streamline costs and processes related to advanced shipping. As shipping regulations tighten, expect more organizations to get on board with the benefits blockchain provides.
FedEx Expands FedEx Freight Direct
FedEx just announced an expansion of its FedEx Freight Direct offering. The company initially launched the initiative for full-service residential delivery of bulky products, in January. FedEx tested the idea in select markets, and the impact has since grown. As a result, the service will allow customers to order heavier products online and have them delivered directly to their home or business 2 . If successful, FedEx could be a catalyst for new delivery trends within the eCommerce space.
Customers can receive three different service levels for their FedEx Freight Direct shipments. Basic, standard, and premium levels are included in the shipment offerings. However, FedEx is not the first company to explore this delivery method. For instance, XPO Logistics, Ryder System, and J.B. Hunt have experienced success offering similar services. Nevertheless, the move towards direct delivery service for bulky goods is becoming the rule and not the exception.
As we complete the last quarter of the year, organizations need to ensure their shipping terms and options are well defined. Despite ongoing complexities, some organizations have found ways to increase profitability through tailored shipping tactics. Whether its implementing blockchain or exploring new methods of delivery, shipping methods should be top of mind for any industry.
1 Blockchain to Be a Gamechanger for Global Shipping by Stephen Pope
2 FedEx Freight Expands FedEx Freight Direct Service Offering by Jeff Berman