This week, leading industry publication Transport Topics examined electronic freight exchanges and how they differ from traditional load boards. It’s an interesting piece that gives a balanced perspective and comparison of the two. uShip, which falls into the electronic load exchange category, was heavily featured in the article, including CEO Matt Chasen’s comments sprinkled throughout.
So, what are the key differences?
According to the article, perhaps the biggest difference is that with e-freight exchanges, the entire transaction takes place online, including vetting to negotiation to payment. With traditional load boards, which may initiate online, move offline to be transacted through the phone, fax or email, and even a white board. Load board advocates claim the phone is essential to the process. But advances in software (Software as a Service) have helped make the phoneless e-freight exchanges possible, where they weren’t even considered even 5 or 10 years ago. Now companies no longer need to build their own; they can simply leverage the software in their system, which speeds up the ability to make things happen much more quickly and efficiently.
Second, load board advocates claim deep knowledge of the party carrying your load trumps the point-and-click convenience of the online exchange, but the growing volume by electronic freight exchanges could signal a shift in the industry as they expand their online vetting capabilities. At uShip, we’re definitely advocates for knowing who is hauling your load. Our proprietary, eBay-like feedback rating system, third-party compliance vetting and monitoring and additional behind-the-scenes processes (both human and technical) protect shippers in this process, and with the launch of new services such as uShip PRO, this will only become stronger.
Last, the article also includes sentiment from load board officials who claim they simply have larger volume, and it’s that volume that draw the parties back for more business. While that may be true in some cases, but as the article indicates, increasing industry participation in the transactional model represents a larger share of the freight market.
For the full article, click here or the image above.