What’s in Store for the Future of Shipping and Logistics?

Local and regional shipping is one of the largest industries in the United States.

US shipping and logistics companies move over $4 trillion in goods every year. Businesses spend up to $99 billion in delivery costs to keep up with their customers’ demands.

With so much commerce at stake, it important to know what trends are in store for this busy trade. You can read further to find out how you can position your company to leverage these developments to your full advantage.

Shipping and Logistics Defined

Shipping and logistics are two terms that are usually intertwined. But they have their own unique meanings. Shipment means moving products from one place to another. Logistics refers to the processes you use to move these products between two points. These processes include ordering, purchasing, and warehousing.

Trends for the Future

Trends for the future of shipping and logistics look promising. Here are a few of them in a nutshell.

Automation and Technology

The logistics and shipping industry will always need a level of human interaction. Onsite human judgment calls can correct mistakes or prevent accidents.

Companies can automate other processes such as scheduling, payments, and pricing. Automating these features can help simplify these procedures for drivers and shippers.

Companies are using drones and robots to load commercial vehicles. Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) technology programs trucks to drive to their destination. Truck drivers never need to touch the steering wheel during the entire journey.

Transparency Shaped by Customer Experience

Consumers want to know where their products come from. They want to know how they’re made and moved. They want to know if manufacturing these products will hurt the environment.

The future of shipping depends on companies being able to answer these questions to an inquiring public. Companies now keep records that prove their products are eco-friendly and reduce waste. They’re also mindful of fair trade standards and pay fair prices to producers in developing countries.

Using Big Data to Make Better Decisions

Big data analytics provides a wealth of information on shipping for logistics companies. Logistics companies can get insights into routing and identifying obstacles in their supply chain model.

They can also streamline products and resources at the warehouse level.

Companies can use real-time traffic, climate, and fuel prices data to pinpoint optimal routes to a destination. They can also use predictive analytics to gauge consumer behavior and buying preferences.

Next Steps

The US shipping and logistics industry spent $1.5 trillion dollars in 2017 on its operations. Its the backbone for US retail sales which totaled over $5 trillion in 2017. Needless to say, the shipping industry is not going away any time soon and you need to be ready to anticipate it’s next direction.

If you’re ready to automate your existing shipping and logistics services, you can read more about ADAS truck technology here. You’ll learn all about ADAS’ breakthrough technology that improves efficiency and safety for commercial vehicles.

Don’t forget to check our blog for more helpful information on considerations for planning a shipping business. We’re experts in the shipping and maritime service industry.

Give us a call today!

8 Things to Consider When Buying a Conex Container

The port of Houston is a thriving 25 miles of private and public docks that are used to transport 236 million tons of cargo. Thanks to this large volume, there are plenty of shipping containers available. If you are looking to buy, shopping for a Conex box for sale in Houston is a great idea! This rings true if your needs are for a brand new or used container.

There are a few things you need to look at though when you consider buying a particular container. Make sure you use this guide so that you end up with a high-quality container.

The Basics of Conex Containers

Conex shipping containers are large steel boxes that are used to ship a large amount of cargo. In recent years they have also become popular as a building material. They come in two standard lengths of 20 or 40 feet. The standard height is 8 feet 6 inches. The standard width is 8 feet. You may find some containers that are referred to as “high cube”. These containers are 9 feet 6 inches

1. The Roof

Walk inside the container and look up at the roof. If you see sunlight coming through then the roof has started to corrode. The container is no longer watertight. You should also climb a ladder and take a look at the roof on the outside of the container. Are there any dents or low spots where water will collect? If the container isn’t rusting yet, these are the spots where it will one day.

2. The Floors

You don’t want to buy a container that has rotting floors. This goes for both containers intended for shipping and building. The majority of containers will have a steel floor but some will have a wood floor. With the steel floors, you will need to check for rust. If the floor is wood you will need to check that it hasn’t rotted away.

3. The Doors

Open the doors and make sure they swing open and closed smoothly. Check the latching mechanism to make sure that it works the way that it should. The most common place for corrosion and rust is at the bottom of the door.

4. The Height

Will the standard height work for your needs or does your cargo require you to buy a high cube? If you are shipping large equipment then the high cube may be necessary. Otherwise, stick with the standard height.

5. Is It Insulated?

If your cargo needs temperature regulation then you will want your container to have insulation. Otherwise, you risk your cargo being subjected to extreme hot and cold temperatures. If you are planning on building with your container, you will need to check your local codes for requirements on insulation and wiring. You may find that an uninsulated container gives you more space and freedom.

6. Delivery

Where do you need your container to be located? If you are going to use your container for shipping purposes, you will most likely want it at the port. This way you can have it loaded and ready for transport. If you are planning on building with your container then you will want it delivered to your property. Ask your container seller if they are willing to deliver after making any necessary repairs or modifications.

7. The Length

What length is going to work for your needs? If you are planning on using your container for shipping, you will want to stick with the standard 20 and 40-foot lengths. Which one you choose will depend on the cargo you intend to transport. Both lengths tend to have a similar weight limit. Because of this, if your cargo is heavy it is better to fill a 20-foot container then have a half empty 40-foot container.

If you are planning on building with your container then you have a bit more freedom with the length. Both lengths are going to cost the same for delivery. You will probably be happy with the longer length as it will give you double the square footage. Keep in mind that it is easier to trim some off a container that is too long than build onto one that is slightly too short.

8. Is It Legal?

When it comes to shipping your container, it must be certified. Otherwise, you risk rejection at the port.

Look for the CSC plate on the container. It will state key information about your container including:

  • Container model
  • Manufacturer name & serial number
  • Manufacture date
  • Fumigation details
  • Owner name and address
  • Approval number
  • Container number
  • Max operating gross mass
  • Allowable stacking weight
  • ACEP number

If you are planning on using your container for building you need to check with the local building codes first. You need to make sure that your home or office will be legally inhabitable upon completion.

9. Is There a Funky Smell

Walk inside the container and take a whiff. What do you smell?

It may smell like paint, pesticides, or remnants of past cargo. This may not be a big deal if you plan to ship well-packaged cargo.

But what if you are planning to build with it? Can you get rid of the smell? Are you especially sensitive to smells that it will always bother you?

Conex Box for Sale in Houston

Whatever your intended use, you need to keep these 9 factors in mind when looking for a Conex box for sale in Houston. You may find a good deal on a container, but quickly discover that it is in terrible condition.

Keep in mind that if the damage or rust is minor, you may be able to repair the container. We can help you determine the feasibility and cost of repair. We can also help you find the right container for your needs.

Contact us today to get a quote for your Conex box.

How to Inspect a Conex Box before Purchasing It for Your Project

Whether you are exporting products or building a home addition, a Conex box could be the perfect material to use. Originally designed for transporting goods across distances, it will definitely keep your products secure and properly stored until they reach their destination. You’ll also benefit a lot if you use a Conex box for your construction project instead of traditional materials, since it already has the major structural features you need, such as wall and frame. Read More

How to Choose the Right Shipping Containers for Your Building Project

Whether you are planning to build a home, office, or restaurant with shipping containers, you have to make sure that the units you’ll use are suitable for the job. While most shipping containers look the same, they actually have subtle differences that can have a huge effect on the outcome of your project. Careful selection will prevent surplus and help make the finished structure last long. Here are the most important factors you should consider during the selection process.

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Conex Box Garages: Tips to Build the Perfect Garage for Your Home

It isn’t uncommon to find homes that lack a proper garage as many homes only have a driveway for any vehicles a homeowner has. Although the driveway gets the job done, it doesn’t keep your vehicles very secure. In fact, car theft is still a big issue around the country. Despite this, may homeowners still struggle with adding a garage in their homes due to the associated costs. In such cases, it may be to your advantage to invest in a quality conex box instead.

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Top Questions to Ask before Purchasing a Conex Box

Whether you’re looking to build a new home or to set up a container farm, a Conex box can be your best bet for a base material. It’s roomy, sturdy, and very easy to work into a nice, habitable space. Choosing a Conex box to use for your project, however, is no simple task. There are a number of factors that you have to consider to make sure that you’ll pick a unit that meets all your specifications. Here are some important questions to ask yourself and your chosen supplier.

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A Beginner’s Guide to Inspecting and Restoring a Used Conex Box

When containerization began over 60 years ago, no one envisioned Conex boxes would have so many other applications beyond carrying cargo. Today, these shipping containers are fast becoming a popular choice for building different kinds of structure, including commercial spaces, temporary shelters, and storage facilities. The discovery of their alternative uses has, beyond a doubt, revolutionized architecture and engineering. Read More

4 Important Factors to Consider When Purchasing a Conex Box

Conex boxes are primarily used for carrying cargo, but the last couple of decades have seen many innovative uses. A lot of industries, apart from trade and transportation, are beginning to enjoy the many benefits these functional and flexible containers offer. Whether they need additional space for storage or creative works spaces, they can easily build them quickly with conex boxes. Read More

4 Ways You Could Be Wasting Money By Not Buying or Renting a Conex Box

Conex boxes, aka shipping containers, are cost-effective storage solutions that are easy to install and maintain. By purchasing one for your storage needs, you could end up saving a lot of hard-earned cash in the long run. On the contrary, you could also be losing money by not having them. How can this happen, you may ask? Here are four different ways that you’re spending more money than you should by not having a shipping container installed on your property. Read More