Find new customers

Freight Forwarders: 7 Tips To Find New Customers

Competition in the ocean freight market has never been fiercer. This requires freight forwarding companies to be proactive with their sales strategy, instead of waiting for leads to knock on their doors. But how exactly can a freight forwarder find new customers?

Marketing strategies are not the same as they were ten years ago, and the same can be said about logistics. If you want to succeed in this ever-growing industry, you need to be aware of the current trends impacting customers’ choices. 

To help you with that, we will explore promising practices that freight forwarders can implement to increase sales in the company. 

Check out the 10 tips we’ve prepared to help you stand out and win customers!

  1. Monitor import data
  2. Study your competition
  3. Keep your sales team motivated
  4. Foster customer loyalty
  5. Build a marketing strategy
  6. Adjust to market needs
  7. Create an effective network

Enjoy your reading!

1. Monitor import data

I probably don’t need to tell you that the import process is quite bureaucratic. There are so many details a freight forwarding company should oversee that is easy to lose sight of important details. The good news is: technology can help you with that. 

With a global trade management system, it is possible to monitor every import movement entering the US. This way, you can check who are the main consignees for each shipment, where they are located, and which items they import most.

These are just to name a few filters. You can also search shipments by HS Code, ports of origin or entry, or by the consignee’s Zip code.

2. Know your competitors

As competitive as the freight forwarding market is, knowing your competitors is a must. Studying and understanding your competition is an old and valuable tactic to grow your market share

There are a lot of benefits of monitoring your market share, like:

  • It gives you an idea of how you’re doing in comparison to your competitors;
  • Keeps you informed of actions and activities they may be undertaking (discounts, listings changes);
  • Monitor and estimate their sales;
  • Benchmark your market share against theirs over time;
  • Prospect consignees near you who are currently importing with other freight forwarders;
  • Understand if your current customers are also importing with one of your competitors.

3. Keep your sales team motivated

We know that selling is a challenging task, especially when it comes to B2B business. Closing logistics deals can often be long and tiring, requiring salespeople to attend multiple meetings. For this, it is important to keep your sales team always motivated. 

You can encourage them through goals and performance bonuses. But (it might sound cliché) money isn’t everything. the environment you provide for your employees also makes a huge difference on their productivity at work. 

And I don’t mean only the physical environment, but also the tools you offer them to perform their jobs. When they have access to tools that make them work smarter, not harder, they are extra motivated to give their best and reach company goals. 

4. Foster customer loyalty

Finding new customers is not the only way to increase your sales. Your current ones can also bring you new business opportunities. A satisfied customer will now only continue to use your services, but also recommend your business to others.

But how can you foster their loyalty? The best way is to offer a high-quality service. Think about what your customers value the most. Maybe it is getting regular updates about their shipments, maybe it is paying the lowest fee. 

For each segment, this answer will be different. Your job is to find the right answer for your case, and be sure to delight your customers.

5. Build a marketing strategy

“Finding new customers” is almost a synonym for “marketing”. But marketing your freight forwarder business is not the same as it used to be. 

Marketing went digital, and so should you. Having a modern and intuitive website is mandatory, but you should also consider your social media efforts and your email marketing strategy.

Yeah, companies still use email. You can use this channel to keep in touch with your prospects and show them what you have to offer.

In addition, it is important to answer questions and interact with users on social media. You can also run ads on relevant logistics-related websites and invest in Google Ads. Another option is to invest in useful content posted on your own website to generate organic traffic

You can read more about supply chain marketing strategy by clicking here.

6. Adjust to market needs

The economy can highly influence your sales performance. It is essential to be updated about all the logistics market current trends so you can constantly adjust your services based on new requirements. 

For instance: the Ukrainian war affected supply chains worldwide, demanding companies to rethink their processes and, sometimes, find new suppliers overseas because of port congestion and delays. 

To stay ahead of these changes, a freight forwarder should:

  • Review other freight forwarders in your area;
  • Participate in logistics events to network and meet the competition;
  • Understand how employees work in solving company problems;
  • Check supply chain portals and read the most recent news affecting global logistics. 

7. Create an effective network

Having effective communication is the number one step to getting people to engage with your company, especially in global trade. Freight forwarding companies must build a solid network, being in touch with agents spread worldwide.

Technology has made this easier, so you can easily find and connect with global trade agents. You can also check who is the freight forwarding company responsible for your import at the port of origin, and use this proximity to get referrals and grow your business.

You should also participate in logistics events! They are a great opportunity to present your business, meet suppliers, expand your network of partners, and even find new customers.

Bonus tip: find new customers with Logcomex!

Innovation can help you stand out in such a competitive market. New technologies have a direct impact on helping reduce the time spent on repetitive and bureaucratic processes and to automate tasks.

Logcomex’s platform, for instance, gives companies control over their operation, allowing them to monitor shipment data. It is a way to reduce costs and streamline processes. With it, you can:

  • Prospect leads and find new customers
  • Find new partners and cut costs
  • Keep track of your competitors
  • Evaluate your market share
  • Improve your operations

We provide detailed data on global imports coming to the U.S. on a user-friendly dashboard for you to make better and faster decisions. Our software makes data management more efficient, transparent, and with end-to-end operational visibility. Learn more!