Looking for Loads in All the Right Places

freight-board-search

The shipping industry of today is a trucker’s market.  There’s a shortage of CDL drivers which is good news for drivers looking for loads―there are a lot of them out there.  However, to be a successful owner/operator in the trucking industry, you have to find the right loads. It’s not just a matter of finding any load but finding the right one.  For that, you need more than just any load board.

Before you begin your search, think about what kind of client you’re looking for.  The goal is to find high-paying loads that are actually going to make you money. If you have an idea in your mind about what you’re looking for, you’ll increase your chances of finding it.  Are you looking for a large, well-known company? One with a good reputation? A client that you can work with on a regular basis? One that ships in areas where you want to work? Do you want to work with a freight broker?  Do you offer specialized services such as moving oversized construction equipment or refrigerated services?

With the answers to these questions in mind, it’s time to peruse the multitude of load sites out there but where should you begin?  There are so many load sites available online that it’s difficult to know where to begin. Free load sites are tempting, after all, why pay for something when you don’t have to?  There’s a good reason for that. Free load sites have to make money somehow, and they usually do it by having lots and lots of advertising on their websites, selling things other than load information.  Some free load boards are just lists of free load boards. Most loads that are found on the free sites are not posted directly to the site from shippers or brokers; they come from a load sharing service.

Load sites that charge a reasonable monthly fee will generally give you what you’re looking for instead of trying to sell you things you’re not.  While they all offer loads and shipping details, it’s important to find one that’s simple to use and that has all of the details you need to narrow your load search.  Some of the things you may need to know other than load weight, ship date, and trip distance are:

  • The age of the listing
  • Full or partial load
  • Trailer type
  • Number of “deadhead miles” or miles from your location to where you pick up the load
  • Is the poster a member of TIA (Transportation Intermediaries Assoc.), i.e. a broker that agrees to a high standard of business ethics?
  • Credit rating that includes credit score as well as the number of days it takes them to pay for services
  • Mileage calculator that includes tolls
  • Up-to-date fuel prices

With this information in hand, you’ll be able to find the right loads.  You’ll also be able to maximize your time by scheduling loads for your trips back too.  If you want to land these jobs, however, you have to make sure you’re the right driver.  

Begin with your insurance.  A shipper wants a driver with good insurance that includes freight insurance.  They’re trusting you with their freight and want to be covered if anything goes wrong.  

Insurance goes hand-in-hand with your safety rating.  A driver with an excellent driving record and safety rating will be hired over one with poor ones any day.  

Always be professional and be mindful of your reputation.  Drivers with a good and dependable reputation will get the higher-paying jobs.  

If you’re looking for a load site that’s not just any site, Direct Freight is the place to go.  It matches loads and drivers by using pertinent information so you can maximize your driving time and your earning potential.  It uses state-of-the-art tools to make the system work for you, including alerts via text or email for when new loads are posted.  Direct Freight is so sure that their service will be a tremendous benefit to you that they offer a free trial for 15 days.

Go to DirectFreight.com or call (888)894-4198 to find out how you can get started finding the right loads today!

What Does the Average Freight Broker Make?

average-freight-broker-make

Whether you’re new to the shipping industry and are eager to learn a new business, or you’re a truck driver looking to get away from those long hauls away from your family, the job of freight broker is an exciting option.   As a freight broker, you work for yourself, create your own hours, and depending on your dedication to the job, you can make a great deal of money.

What is a Freight Broker?

When a company has a shipment they need to make, they pay a freight broker to move the freight.  The freight broker then pays a carrier to ship the product for less than what the original company paid.  This is the freight broker’s “spread” or his profit. This profit, minus the operating costs is the salary of the freight broker.  A freight broker is the crucial link between shipppers and carriers, sort of a matchmaker between the two.

Freight brokers are also involved with the logistics of shipping.  They negotiate shipping rates, track shipments, and keep track of deliveries and pickups.  They must make sure everything goes off without a hitch and is done in accordance with all laws and procedures.  

How Do I Become a Freight Broker?

Being a freight broker takes dedication and the desire to work on your own.  To become a freight broker you must:

Register your company.  You must register as a business or fill out a DBA (Doing Business As) form.

Make a plan.  To obtain any kind of financing, you usually need to show the lender a business plan.  A business plan also helps guide you through the early stage of your business.

Get a USDOT number.  This is a requirement if you want to operate as a freight broker.  You do this by filling out an application with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, or FMCSA, form OP-1.  There’s a fee, usually around $300.

Get a surety bond.  A surety bond is a type of insurance.  It guarantees that carriers will be paid for their work.  If for some reason, a shipper refuses to pay a carrier, you would be responsible for paying it.  If you can’t pay it, the surety bond will.

The bond company will check your credit and perform a background check before issuing the bond.  You pay a percentage which is dependant upon your credit.

Obtain a legal process agent.  This is also required by the FMSCA.  There needs to be a legal process agent in every state you do business in.   There is usually a $50 fee.

Get insurance.  Once you’ve filled out all of the appropriate paperwork and have obtained your Motor Carrier Number, you must get general liability and cargo insurance.  They are both required.

Of course, taking a training course is not required but will help you get a leg up in the industry and earn the most money for each shipment.  

What is a Freight Broker’s Salary?

A freight broker’s salary can vary greatly.  Indeed.com puts the average at $51,032, Linkedin puts it in the range of $30,000-83,000, and Careeronestop.org has it at $25,000-65,000.  Payscale.com has it at the highest with a range of $41,940-143,000 but all of these ranges are dependant on several factors including experience, skills, and knowledge of the industry.  

Above and Beyond

Having a large database of contacts is important to earning a higher salary as a freight broker.  Being able to provide your clients with excellent service with affordable rates will build lasting working relationships.  Some states bring in a higher salary for freight brokers than others, the highest ones being CT, WA, OR, NE and Washington D.C.  The salary for these states is higher than the national average.

Typically, freight brokers who make the highest salaries are those who have freight agents working for them.  A freight agent is an independent contractor who coordinates shipments with carriers but they aren’t required to have the insurance that a freight broker does.  They work for the freight broker who carries all of the insurance and business licenses and expenses. The more shipments made, the more commissions are earned which is why the most successful freight brokers hire freight agents to work for them.  

Being a freight broker can be a lucrative job for the right person.  The freight broker industry is expected to remain strong. More and more people rely on online shopping each year which means more trucks on the road.  Even if those trucks eventually become self-driving vehicles, freight brokers will still be in high demand.

DirectFreight.com is an essential tool for freight brokers.  It’s an easy-to-use load board that allows you to find loads and carriers, as well as provides destinations, load specifications, credit reports, and has useful tools such as mile calculators, fuel price data, and other useful features, all for a low monthly fee.  Call us today at (888)894-4198 or go to https://www.directfreight.com/home/ to sign up for a free 15-day trial.  With DirectFreight, your freight broker company will have the tools it needs to become a success.

It’s Up To Trump Whether The NAFTA Deadline Is Met, Say Canada And Mexico

Trump, President, Usa, America, Flag

With about two weeks left until what may be the final deadline for a new NAFTA this year, Mexico and Canada are suggesting it’s up to President Donald Trump to help make one happen.  Read more here.

Empty truck?  Looking for backhaul loads?  Thousands of freight brokers post US freight to our load board every day.  Sign-up now and start finding freight anytime-anywhere!

Another carrier moves toward salaried driver pay structure

Another carrier has announced a move toward a base salary compensation structure for over-the-road company drivers. Washington-State-based Smokey Point Distributing, a Daseke Inc. company, says that starting June 1 it will pay qualified solo over-the-road drivers with flatbed hauling experience an annual salary of $65,000 and each qualified and experienced member of a driving team an annual salary of $75,000.  Read more here.

Empty truck?  Looking for backhaul loads?  Thousands of freight brokers post US freight to our load board every day.  Sign-up now and start finding freight anytime-anywhere!

Lawmakers ask FMCSA’s Martinez to grant OOIDA’s ELD exemption request

Person Signing in Documentation Paper

A trio of Republican congressmen sent a letter to the leader of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration calling for his support for ELD exemption for small-business trucking firms.

In a May 8 letter, U.S. Reps. Greg Gianforte, R-Mont.; Steve King, R-Iowa; and Brian Babin, R-Texas, asked FMCSA Administrator Ray Martinez to grant an exemption request filed by the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association. The request seeks relief from the ELD mandate on behalf of small business truckers with a proven safety record.  Read more here.

Empty truck?  Looking for backhaul loads?  Thousands of freight brokers post US freight to our load board every day.  Sign-up now and start finding freight anytime-anywhere!

Gov. Andrew Cuomo Proposes Additional $125 Billion for N.Y. Infrastructure

Free stock photo of city, lights, night, water

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced May 8 that an additional $125 billion will go toward infrastructure investment over the next five years.  Read more here.

Empty truck?  Looking for backhaul loads?  Thousands of freight brokers post US freight to our load board every day.  Sign-up now and start finding freight anytime-anywhere!

Nikola Sues Tesla for $2 Billion Over Electric Truck Design

Free stock photo of wood, metal, wooden, hammer

Nikola Corp. has sued rival Tesla Inc. for $2 billion, claiming Tesla infringed on U.S. patents Nikola received on cab design, including wrap windshield, midentry door, fuselage, fender, side cladding, and the overall design of a semi.  Read more here.

Empty truck?  Looking for backhaul loads?  Thousands of freight brokers post US freight to our load board every day.  Sign-up now and start finding freight anytime-anywhere!

U.S. Bank: Truck Freight Services Spending Grew 25% in 2017

White Dump Truck Near Pine Tress during Daytime

Spending on truck freight services surged nearly 25% and freight shipments grew 12.6% in 2017 as the economy expanded and the trucking industry paid more to obtain capacity and on driver compensation, according to the U.S. Bank Freight Payment Index.  Read more here.

Empty truck?  Looking for backhaul loads?  Thousands of freight brokers post US freight to our load board every day.  Sign-up now and start finding freight anytime-anywhere!

Trucking: FMCSA Includes ELD Violations In Revised CSA Methodology

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has updated its list of hours-of-service violations used in the Compliance, Safety, Accountability enforcement model.  Read more here.

Empty truck?  Looking for backhaul loads?  Thousands of freight brokers post US freight to our load board every day.  Sign-up now and start finding freight anytime-anywhere!

Trucking: Trump Push for Quick NAFTA Deal Slowed by Division on Top Issues

Free stock photo of wood, writing, typography, wooden

President Donald Trump’s push for a quick resolution to NAFTA talks is being stymied by persistent differences among the United States, Canada and Mexico over a handful of the make-or-break issues.  Read more here.

Empty truck?  Looking for backhaul loads?  Thousands of freight brokers post US freight to our load board every day.  Sign-up now and start finding freight anytime-anywhere!