Shaping Your Shipping Strategy Into The Quiet Season

This Article originally appeared in Logistics Brief on January 7, 2020.

Many times after the holiday shipping season ends, the freight market enters into a “quiet season” where demand for freight slows down as carriers prepare for the new year. With consumer demand decreasing and no other peak industry seasons until spring, this presents a unique opportunity for small to medium-sized businesses (SMB) to secure affordable rates for future shipments.

In order to take advantage of this, you need to understand how market conditions differ during the quiet season months, as well as what factors impact truckload rates during this time of year. Knowing this will help you optimize your freight strategy and maximize shipments throughout the beginning of 2020.

Let’s take a look at how you can take advantage of the quiet season.

What is Considered the Quiet Season?

The quiet season is widely considered to occur between January and March. During this time, freight volume is down as carriers recover from the hectic holiday shipping season.

How Truckload Rates are Affected After the Holidays

After the holidays, truckload rates typically favor shippers as the demand for capacity is low. With that in mind, however, unknown market conditions can still drive rates up.

Winter storms tend to disrupt the freight market during quiet season months, with low temperatures and snowed-in highways often causing delays to shipments. This can lead to a temporary decrease in available capacity, resulting in carriers raising rates as they look to find more available trucks. This is especially relevant for shipments headed to the Midwest and Northeast, as there two regions tend to have the harshest winters. While the weather is unpredictable, the effects of a storm can be minimized if planned for in advance.

Final Thoughts

Here at Freightquote by C.H. Robinson, we provide you with the tools you need to get the most out of the quiet season. Partnering with Freightquote gives you access to competitive rates from over 76,000 quality carriers, ensuring that you find the right freight option for your business. Our easy-to-use, online self-service shipping tools streamline the shipping process, making it easy for you to build an informed shipping strategy. To begin scheduling your quiet season shipments, click here, and get set up.