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Global Reach Made Easy: Expanding with 3PL Partners

Global logistics services

America is certainly the land of opportunity: Rich in business and industry, abundant natural resources and technology, innovation and leadership. But at some point, many U.S. company executives find themselves looking outside our borders. They realize there are other ripe (market and customer) worlds to conquer, but early on, the concept of “global logistics services” has yet to enter the picture.

Teams begin to formulate the concept of an international expansion strategy that will eliminate sole reliance on domestic revenue. Marketing and sales start thinking of ways to align product messaging with new customers and cultures, developing customer personas based on market intelligence.

Then comes the logistics and supply chain piece, and many will balk and reconsider at this point. That’s because most companies in the SMB category – and many in the mid-market – find themselves sorely lacking the internal capabilities. Key aspects like customs clearance, ocean freight, regulatory compliance, etc., are completely alien.

While some will abandon the hunt, enterprising organizations see the wisdom of partnership to enable their cross-border plans to go forward. An experienced provider of global logistics services, such as COGISTICS Transportation, becomes an invaluable resource to support an international expansion strategy.

There are indeed considerable logistics challenges involved in pursuing global markets, which we detail below. But working with a company with strong experience that manages the process down to the minutest detail makes all the difference in the world.

The Ocean Freight Rollercoaster: Navigating Recent Turbulence

Events continue to roil the waters of ocean freight shipping. Most recently, on Feb. 12, Houthi rebels fired missiles at a Greek-flagged vessel bound for Iran with grain, causing damage but fortunately no injuries. Cargo ships running between Europe and Asia continue to divert around the horn of Africa, adding 8–10 days of transit time and disrupting retail and manufacturing supply chains.

Traffic through the busy Panama Canal is another persistent issue, as drought conditions played havoc through much of 2023. While some December rains helped lift vessel restrictions at least until April, then to be reevaluated, volume and demand there have increased due to the Red Sea disruptions.

Volatility can appear to be a perennial problem with ocean freight. Consider, for instance, the massive logjams at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach in 2020 and 2021, as pandemic-fueled e-commerce volumes exploded.

All of this highlights the need for shippers to bring onboard outside expertise in global logistics services to handle all the intricacies and nuances of cross-border freight while helping them manage costs.

How a 3PL Helps Navigate a Volatile Global Freight Environment

A trusted 3PL partner provides stability and reliability for shippers with cross-border commerce aspirations, amidst a volatile global freight landscape. From freight booking through ocean transit, arrival in port, and drayage to a land-based carrier, COGISTICS Transportation manages the entire process to provide a stress-free experience. It combines people, technology, and a deep level of expertise to increase efficiency through automation.

COGISTICS Transportation is licensed as an Ocean Transportation Intermediary (OTI) by the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC). This means it is authorized to prepare and process all necessary documentation for cross-border shipments. It is also designated by the FMC as a Non-Vessel-Operating Common Carrier (NVOCC), arranging with shipping lines for cargo transit using its own bill of lading, known as a House Bill of Lading (HBL). As an NVOCC, COGISTICS Transportation leases space from the ocean freight carrier on behalf of its clients.

Overcoming Visibility and Communication Hurdles

A lack of visibility into ocean transportation is a major issue for shippers. It hampers their ability to communicate accurate information to consignees at the receiving port and ensures that strict delivery schedules are adhered to.

This is where a 3PL partner comes through as well. COGISTICS Transportation uses advanced freight tracking with real-time shipment status. Its analytical tools enhance freight visibility from port to door and enable data-driven decision-making.

An integrated, personalized communication plan, developed by COGISTICS Transportation in consultation with each client, ensures that critical shipment information is shared among all parties on a timely basis. There is also 24/7 access to experts who provide guidance and problem-solving capabilities to address disruptions and issues such as those described above.

Look to a Trusted Partner for Worry-Free Global Shipping

Expanding into foreign markets presents a terrific opportunity for domestic companies looking to broaden their revenue base and find new audiences eager to purchase U.S.-made products. But it is a complex business that presents many logistical challenges.

COGISTICS Transportation provides an end-to-end solution for managing global freight shipments and the many details from booking to shipment, customs clearance, and transfer for hauling to the final destination. Get in touch with us today!



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