5 Green Trends That Will Transform The Logistics Industry

The shipping industry has existed for centuries and its equipment and technologies have certainly become increasingly sophisticated and efficient. Traditional shipping procedures, however, have contributed to approximately 3-4 percent of global emissions. In this post, you will learn more about several green trends that are transforming the logistics industry for the better.

Optimization of Port Management Procedures

More shipping companies in the logistics industry are expected to refine and optimize their port management procedures. For example, research has shown that companies are progressively shortening the amount of time that ships typically spend idling in docks and harbors. This practice has helped improve turnaround time, reduce carbon dioxide emissions, and have simply made shipping processes significantly more efficient than before. The good news is that these practices have been adopted by almost all major shipping companies. This means that the logistics industry will become increasingly greener.

The Use of Sky Sails

Sky sails are a relatively new invention and are ingeniously simple. They involve using large kites to tow a cargo ship during its voyage. Because sky sails utilize the limitless energy of wind power, they can take significant strain off a ship’s engine. All in all, this green technology increases propulsion efficiency, cuts emissions, and lowers fuel expenditure. Shipping companies will have no issues adopting this technology because the cost of implementing it is minimal.

The Rise of Voyage Optimization

Modern-day technologies are making voyages less unpredictable and far safer than ever before. They allow shipping companies to predict the weather and other maritime conditions with great accuracy. That’s not all; shipping companies across the globe are also using these technologies to monitor and/or predict the performance of their ships in various sea conditions. The data allows them to make more informed decisions about which routes to take. In addition to avoiding high winds and rough seas, voyage optimization is also a great way to reduce fuel consumption and one’s carbon footprint.

Increased Slow Steaming Practices

In order to reduce fuel consumption on a voyage, some shipping companies also rely on slow steaming techniques. This method often involves companies running their ships at a lower speed. Slow steaming began as a way for companies to cut costs but in 2010, nearly all global shipping companies incorporated it into their Standard Operating Procedures. Today, it has become one of the most important green trends in the shipping industry. It is now a highly effective and simple way of reducing carbon emissions.

Cutting Carbon Fuel Consumption

While reducing fuel consumption can help slash carbon emissions, one has to consider the scale of the shipping industry. This means that more has to be done if global shipping companies were to reduce their environmental impact significantly. Fortunately, a promising new technology is emerging: low-carbon fuels. They are designed to reduce greenhouse and noxious gases that can be emitted by large cargo ships. By stripping away larger quantities of impurities such as sulfur and ash, these fuels tend to have a lesser toxicity effect on human health and the environment.

As you can see, green shipping practices have already started to revolutionize the shipping industry. All of them are essential for combating the negative effects that fossil fuels have on the global climate.

3 Common Incoterms Mistakes To Avoid

Incoterms are comprised of guidelines pertaining to what sellers and buyers must do to fulfill their part of the transaction. Established by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), incoterms are part and parcel of international ocean freight services. Since incoterms can be used to resolve disagreements in the event of a dispute, the chosen incoterm must be decided and agreed upon by both buyer and seller. In order to prevent misuse of these rules and guidelines, this post aims to highlight several common incoterms mistakes that can be avoided. Read on to find out more!

Incoterm Didn’t Meet Bank’s Security Requirements for Payment

This mistake may occur when international payment methods such as a Letter of Credit is used. LOCs state that payments can only be made/received after the necessary documents are submitted to the bank (to inform officials that the conditions of the transaction have been met). Due to its safe and secure nature, there seems to be a lack of complete trust between the seller and buyer.

It is important to note that F-incoterms should not be used to address these issues because the buyer will be held responsible for transporting the merchandise. This means that this party has the power to intervene by issuing a Bill of Lading, which prevents the seller from getting paid.

If you are the seller, and the payments are to be made via a Letter of Credit, consider using C-incoterms instead. The two most important documents required to effect payment: the commercial invoice and the Bill of Lading, will be in your control.

Not Considering how EXW Incoterm (EXW) may Affect Export Procedures

Under an EXW incoterm, the seller has the least responsibilities, which often ends after the merchandise has been packaged. From then on, the buyer takes over by exporting the goods from the origin country and maintain communications with export authorities. This process, however, may not be straightforward for the buyers, especially if they are unfamiliar with the export process of the country of origin.

Another potential problem is that shippers may not always permit non-authorized personnel facilitate loading on their grounds due to liability reasons. As a result, the shipper may have to take charge of the loading, which is contrary to EXW’s stipulations. If the cargo gets damaged in the process, determining the responsible party may prove to be challenging. At the end of the day, having the buyer take control of this may then be impractical and unrealistic for certain transactions.

Rushing to Commit to DAP Incoterm and DDP Incoterm

Under DAP Incoterm (Delivered at Place) and DDP Incoterm (Delivery Duty Paid), the seller is often responsible for paying arrival expenditures at destination, including local taxes and duties like VAT, GST, among others. In most countries, it is simply more efficient to have the consignee handle the customs clearance process. They are, however, not legally obliged to do so and that responsibility may fall back onto the seller. If you are the consignee, it is best to err on the side of caution in case of clearance issues caused by shipper’s error. This means that it could result in a delay in cargo delivery as well.

If you are looking for a team that can simplify ocean shipping for your company, you have come to the right place. Don’t hesitate to schedule a consultation with STC Logistics to learn more!

STC GlobalShop 2019

GlobalShop is the world’s largest retail design and merchandising trade show, and GlobalShop 2019 continues the tradition while innovating to bring together more than 20,000 industry attendees to explore leading trends in visual merchanting, store design and construction, and retail design products.

Held at McCormick Place Convention Center in Chicago, this year’s GlobalShop @ RetailX delivers a colocation of the nation’s top three retail events through a collaborative partnership with Retail TouchPoints. If you are looking for the most comprehensive experience in the retail industry, this is it!

As a leading supply chain provider in helping retail businesses manage retail space opening or remodeling, STC Logistics will be there at GlobalShop 2019 to showcase how our logistics and installation teams can provide a Total Source Solution for retail rollout or installation projects.

Looking For Your Logistics To Go The Extra Mile?

Looking For Your Logistics To Go The Extra Mile?

Then you have to experience the white glove services offered by STC Logistics. Our logistics professionals make sure that you enjoy the very best customer service before, during, and after delivery. Whether it’s removing debris offsite, securing your high-price point items with blanket wrap and straps or cross dock and storage services, we are fully confident that we can fulfill even the most demanding and unique white glove logistic needs.

Launch of Our Redesigned Website

STC Logistics is pleased to announce the launch of our redesigned website that aims to better inform our customers about our shipping and logistic capabilities as well as provide easy access for them to track packages, schedule pick-ups, and more. Our website is more user-friendly than ever, easier to navigate, and features fast loading speed so that we can establish our brand in a stellar way online.

At STC Logistics, we are fully capable of managing a wide range of transportation needs from domestic transportation to international transportation to truckload brokerage and more. On our website, we have invested in an exclusive web-based communication system where our customers can enjoy pin-point tracking capabilities. When you work with us, you are guaranteed to experience a Total Source Solution for all of your logistics needs.

Delivering Brand Growth

Do you know what is big for retail logistics today? Having a retail shipping partner that can handle variable demand with retail consolidation and bestowing you full visibility to your shipments. And this is exactly what STC Logistics can do for you!

At STC Logistics, we utilize our elite proprietary technology to help both big and small retail vendors tackle retail logistics in a revolutionary way. We can handle shipments across all of North America and Canada. If you are looking to work with a reliable retail logistics partner that can help you expedite brand growth, contact us today to learn more.

Supply Chain Improvement: You have to be Lean and Agile

The constant emergence of new technologies, a changing economy and shifting customer expectations make improving efficiencies critical in the supply chain world. Would your company rather be lean or agile? You don’t have a choice – you must do both! Call it a hybrid approach, custom or individualized management.

It doesn’t matter what name you adopt from that trendy business management blog you follow, simply deploying a Lean concept to drive your supply chain function is probably not enough… you also need flexibility.

Agile Methodology

An agile approach to supply chain helps the team respond to the unpredictability of today’s business world and the individualized demands of customers. Lean identifies and eliminates waste, which is a very good thing. It reduces unnecessary costs, speeds deliveries, and brings everyone together in the constant search for improved efficiencies. Anything that doesn’t add value to the supply chain function is out the door at a Lean operation.

But when the company combines agile with Lean, it adds reassurance for customers that the supply chain can adapt and handle new products and deliveries with speed and flexibility. That’s an improved service that customers will appreciate and pay a premium to acquire.

Actual Demand

No one wants to see product sitting in the warehouse. It needs to be on the sales floor or delivered to the customer to be profitable. Again, this is not a new concept. But to keep moving to where it needs to be when it needs to be there, the supply chain can’t rely on just Lean or agility, it needs both.

With this “both” notion in mind, it brings the supply chain function from only supply all the way back to the manufacturing of product. Agility starts from the legs of the organization, much like a highly agile athlete…it’s all in the lower body!

Communicate

The agile mindset, once fully implemented has the potential to bring the organization together from top to bottom as long as good communication is in place from the production operation through to final, last-mile delivery to the user.

This requires more people talking and working together. It can be done, and it not only supports the company’s goals, it delivers to today’s omni-channel customers who buy from many different devices and in every physical location imaginable.

Maybe Some Support is Needed….

If your company is really good at building a quality widget, putting together a Lean, agile supply chain probably sounds like entirely new business that needs to be started. So the real task at hand here is finding the right subcontractor to handle the job and make it a reality.

Now, it’s time to hire a third-party logistics service. The good news for your business lies in the fact that you know your customer, when and where they expect delivery and how much all of this should cost. Take that knowledge into the meeting with a potential third-party logistics partner to get customized services.

As one of the most trusted logistics providers in the country, STC Logistics can deliver on the promises you make even in the tough situations. You can add a comprehensive logistics partner to your business. Take a look at the range of services we offer and call us today!

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2016 Retail Sales Predictions

The National Retail Federation (NRF) released its economic forecast for the year, projecting that retail industry sales will grow 3.1%, higher than the 10-year average of 2.7%. The NRF also announced that it expects non-store sales in 2016 to grow between 6% and 9%. These predictions exclude purchases related to automobiles, gas stations and restaurants. Read more of the forecast here.

4 Ways to Grow Your Global Ecommerce Retail Company

It’s not an easy process to develop a global ecommerce shopping platform for your retail business. Retailers understand that everything begins with the consumer; they are the ones who go through the shopping experience from start to finish and with an ever-increasing amount of interruptions during the buying process, retailers must adapt to survive and thrive.

MultichannelMerchant.com provides four tips for retailers to grow their global ecommerce business here.

How Apps and Uber Are Impacting Freight Transportation

How Apps and Uber

Technological advancements are undoubtedly impacting the transportation industry. Let’s take the rise of Uber as an example. If you are unfamiliar with Uber, it’s used as an alternate to taxi services. People download the app on their smartphones and plug in their desired location. Using technology, Uber connects them with a private driver who is nearby, and the payment is automatically deducted from the user’s bank account.

Uber is a popular method for people to get from point A to B because users like its convenience and competitive pricing. However, it’s also controversial. Critics point to their “surge pricing periods,” in which Uber charges more for busier times. Detractors also highlight safety and insurance issues. Pretty much anyone with a license can sign up to be an Uber driver as long as they pass a background check. Taxi drivers are also licensed to do so, while Uber drivers are not.

So Is This The Future of Freight Transportation?

While Uber is used for individuals, this concept has bigger implications for larger scale freight transportation. For example, some organizations have developed or are planning to develop similar-type apps for trucking.

Convoy is based out of Washington and bills itself as the Uber version for trucking. They use their technology to connect shippers with local carriers. According to an article in The Verge, “Convoy gives pre-approved carriers the option to accept or decline a job based on the listed price, which eliminates haggling — a hallmark of the trucking business.” New York-based Transfix serves as an online marketplace for freight.

So are apps and technology like this the future of the industry? Some people are arguing that the “uber-ization” of the trucking industry is a good thing. According to the American Trucking Association (ATA), trucking is valued as an $800 billion industry, and more than 3 million trucks trek out more than 100 billion miles annually. While there may be some room in the industry for these apps, there are major liabilities that come with this approach.

Think Logically and Consider the Pitfalls

When it comes to your shipments, there are more factors to consider than just price and location. Shippers must evaluate any potential damages to their brand and the importance of customer service in the event of any issues.

For example, you would have to assume the potential risk or damage from a drive that you have never used, but based on an app. For many of these new apps, carriers can sign up as long as they have basic qualifications such as insurance. However, many of them often overlook important aspects such as a driver’s history backed up by reliable data. Do you really want to get into a legal or branding quagmire in the event of an accident?

The Quality of 3PL Companies

3PL organizations provide many benefits to their clients including:

  • Expedited freight capability
  • Accurate transit estimates
  • Flexibility
  • Customer service
  • Tracking controls
  • Increased security
  • Reliable deliveries
  • Ability to meet specific situations and requirements
  • White glove services

STC Logistics specializes in expedited freight logistics solutions. We are one of the top trusted logistics companies in NJ. To learn more about our services, click the button below!

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