Reducing costs through transportation

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We know it’s a tough time for businesses and that many are looking for ways to reduce costs.  We’d like to talk about how you can reduce the cost of shipping your goods

Part of the work we do with our customers is to identify any improvements that we can make to their pack and shipment size. By reducing the overall volume of the shipment, there can be significant savings to be had with couriers on parcel size. This can also increase the payload of your own vehicle fleet.

For example, by increasing your pallet yield by only 10% you could effectively save up to £50 per day for every 10 pallets shipped – that‘s around £12,500 per year. It also cuts down on the number of pallets that need to be handled by your dispatch teams, as well as a reduction in the associated packaging used – pallets and stretch wrap for example.

In some cases, it has also reduced the number of vehicles on the road – that’s a massive win-win for logistics and the environment.

Here are a couple of tips to get you started.

Evaluate your box sizes and material

Is the box the right size for your products? Boxes that are too big typically require a void fill to fill the gaps – this all adds to the cost of packing your product. It also takes up more space on your pallets and may cause packages to fall into a higher price category for courier charges.

If you are packing smaller boxes into a shipper carton, ensure they fit tightly to maximise the space you have. By using a shipper carton that fits snugly you can positively affect the number of layers on a pallet. For example, if you can reduce your shipper carton by 3 centimetres in height, a pallet containing 10 layers could reduce by 30 centimetres – that’s potentially another layer of goods!

Take a look at the box material too. Due to the development of stronger board grades, double wall cartons may be able to be replaced with a single wall board. A switch to a single wall can take off up to a centimetre in box width, length and height. This may not sound much but, depending on your pack size and mode of transport, it can contribute to some powerful savings.

Assess the overall shipping weight

Shipping weight may be dependent on the product that you are physically shipping but there are a few variables that you may be able to review.

For instance, the weight of the packaging that you are using can significantly impact shipment weight. If you are using heavy timber crates, are you able to switch to a lightweight corrugate option? If you are using lots of void fill, is there a way to remove this or switch to a lighter alternative, like airbags for example?

If you are shipping goods out on heavy timber pallets, there may be some lightweight alternatives suitable for your products. To read more about the impact of pallets on your shipments, you may be interested in our article “Four timber pallet alternatives to reduce shipment weight”.

If you would like advice on how to reduce your transport costs without compromising on product protection, contact Macfarlane Packaging today. We sell the widest range of packaging and work with customers to reduce operational costs every day with our Significant Six approach. Contact us today to find out how we can support your business.

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