Freight shipping services are not reserved strictly for bringing a shipment from the manufacturer to the warehouse to be stored or from the warehouse to the final destination, typically a retailer. With today’s technological advances allowing retailers the ability to have inventory, supply, and demand numbers in real-time, there is a way to eliminate the need for warehousing in certain situations, enabling the ability to cross dock. This term means that you are sending your shipment right from the manufacturer to the retailer, in essence. There may be a stop off at a warehouse, but the shipment never leaves the docking area; it is taken from that area and brought to the final destination in a short amount of time.
Save Money when you Cross Dock
If you are able to take advantage of the ability to cross dock, there are many advantages you will realize, but the largest benefit is the money you will save. When you have to have the products stored in a warehouse, there is labor involved in putting the shipment away and then again when it is picked for shipment to its final destination. Being able to save those labor costs are usually incentive enough to see if it will work for any particular company. In addition to saving on labor, however, is the ability to save on warehousing costs. If there are no products to store, there is no reason to pay for warehouse space, which means you save even more money in the long run.
The Most Common Products to Cross Dock
Cross docking is common for a variety of products, but it will not work for everything. The products that have the most success include those that have the most stable demand, meaning they do not have highs and lows throughout the year. This means staying away from seasonal items, but those that a retailer knows will sell at any given point, no matter the weather, economy, or holiday. Other items that do well with cross docking include new promotional items and those items that are already ready to hit the shelves, meaning they are tagged and ready to be sold directly to the customer.
When you consider your freight and shipping strategies, ask your freight shipper about cross docking to see if you will benefit. In the end, it can save a company a lot of money so it is well worth looking into.