Nowadays, a vast majority of businesses set their sights on expanding overseas. This is especially true for e-commerce businesses, as they do not have a brick and motor store and solely rely on shipping products or services. To get goods from one place to another, most businesses will have to be involved in shipping in some way, whether it be via truck, rail, air, or any other option. Ocean freight – which consists of transporting goods across the seas – is generally the most preferred method of transporting cargo. In fact, there are plenty of professional agencies, freight forwarders, or fcl shipping providers to aid in the transportation of goods to distant locations.
But before you get started and jump to using ocean freight services, here are a few facts that might be interesting surrounding ocean freight, so that you know going in what to expect.
Offers safe shipping for different kinds of cargo
Although the safety of cargo is prioritized when it comes to shipping, in reality, there are a lot of factors that can affect the safety of a good when it is transported. For instance, if someone is transporting perishable cargo, then it has to be packed and stored in specially made containers, or else it may get damaged by the changes in temperature. Controlled atmospheric conditions are also needed to help prevent any blemishes. Fortunately, most ocean freight services, provide temperature and humidity-controlled containers for these types of goods.
Another big issue is the chance of loss, theft, or misplacement of goods. If an ocean freight provider is reliable, then customers do not have much to worry about. This is because the shipments will be under the watchful eye of professionals until it is delivered to their final destination. Although fire hazards may be a concern, sea freight is surprisingly safe for flammable materials. There will be fire safety systems on board that can help with preventing potential fire accidents. So, you can rest assured that your cargo is safe during transport.
Ideal for oversized cargo
With other kinds of shipping options, such as rail, road, and air, there can be serious limitations when it comes to the size, dimensions, weight, and volume of the cargo you choose to ship. Air is the most egregious, as it severely limits what can be transported. As a result, it is not possible to ship any type of oversized cargo. However, unlike the previous options, ocean freight is slightly different. In fact, it allows shippers to move cargo of any size or weight, without limitations. For example, Bulk cargo, break bulk items, and Not in Trailer containers can be moved using sea freight. As a result, it is not surprising that most companies opt for sea freight if they need to transport heavy machinery, large amounts of quantity goods, or large types of equipment, to name a few. This is only made possible via sea freight services.
More environmentally friendly
Surprisingly enough, if you are looking for a more environmentally friendly option, then ocean freight would be great for you. Compared to the carbon footprint created by air freight or transporting goods via land, ocean freight has a lower carbon footprint. So, in a way, you are doing your bit to protect the environment if you pick this shipping option! As people would say, that is two birds with one stone!
Most affordable shipment method
Most businesses want to keep their expenses low. This is especially true when it comes to shipping, where shipping fees (especially if you are shipping internationally) can be astronomically high, ultimately impacting your bottom line. So, sea freight is often considered one of – if not the most affordable shipment method to date. Companies can basically transport any type of cargo no matter how far, without spending much. In comparison to air or road freight, which can be incredibly costly. This is because air and road freight take into account the size and weight of the cargo, whereas ocean freight only takes into account the size of the container. As such, ocean freight tends to cost around six times less than air freight. So, if you are looking to deliver something on a budget, then ocean freight is an extremely cost-effective shipping option to consider.
Price calculation is simple
If you need to ship overseas, then pricing can become complicated and overwhelming, especially for small businesses. Who wants to spend all their time looking at budgets and spreadsheets? Luckily, when it comes to ocean freight, price calculation does not have to be hard at all! The only thing you need to do is input the formulae of import and export costs and you can get the exact expense right in front of you. This is in contrast to air freight, where other factors need to be considered. For instance, you have to detail the specifications of the goods, such as whether it is fragile cargo, lightweight material, perishable items, etc.
Tracking shipments is easy
With technology becoming so advanced, tracking is now a staple for any type of delivery. Whether you are shipping goods abroad or ordering something, its movement and location can be tracked. Although most people may think that tracking sea freight is difficult or complicated due to it taking a long time, that is not true at all.
The GPS systems on most cargo ships are very complex and allow for in-depth, detailed tracking. This means there is a streamlined source of information that is being directly reported to you.
You do not need to fill a container
Most people may mistakenly believe that you need to fill a container to consider using sea freight, but this is not the case! In fact, the option of less than container loads (LCL) are increasingly becoming a common option, especially for those looking to ship things quickly. This option means that different shipments will be packed together in one container, instead of one shipment filling the whole area. If you do the maths, this can sometimes work out to be cheaper, especially if your business has a short production cycle or a smaller collection of goods.