What to Consider When You’re Optimizing Freight Lanes 


In business, as in life, you must be efficient to be successful. In the transportation and logistics industry, optimizing your freight lanes to reduce waste is a crucial ingredient to an effective supply chain. Without optimizing lanes, both shippers and carriers stand to lose money. No one wants to waste time and money or risk the relationships between carriers and customers. 

Correctly optimizing your freight lanes takes planning and strategy. You want to eliminate waste while serving every customer, everywhere. How do you do it? 

Consider Carrier Factors  

Typically, carriers know what trucking lanes they want to use, the cargo that travels on those roads, and where to refuel and get vehicle service. This is why carriers strongly weigh multiple factors when choosing their loads. For example: 

Geography and terrain 

Flatter land provides a more straightforward route. There’s an additional benefit of less fuel consumption and strain on drivers along with their trucks.  

Traffic Density 

Major cities will have more traffic in and around the metropolitan areas. This congestion is challenging to navigate and can cause delays. 


Carriers will offset travel costs on turnpikes and other toll roads by charging higher rates. Toll roads also tend to see more significant traffic. 

Where to Optimize   

Shippers and carriers always look for the most consistent and efficient way to ship product. Knowing where to optimize helps with your overall lane optimization. 

Optimize Your Network 

What are you shipping, and what is the weight? The million-dollar questions? More than anything else, these two factors determine your shipping strategy. With supply chains proving to be more complex every year, you must do more than just match a shipment to a carrier.  

Using a state-of-the-art network will undoubtedly help you get there if you want to maximize your shipping efficiency. Data, including manufacturing limitations, manufacturing costs, delivery times, delivery costs, and demand data, can be engineered into a network. 

PLS Logistics Services has extensive experience in providing transportation management services. With our custom approach, customers will receive efficient solutions to simplify and improve business transportation processes and strategy. Whether you need to manage a single-mode or an entire transportation network, PLS has the tools to handle the job.  

The information that comes from this network can help your business determine many of your shipping decisions while helping you save money and be more cost effective.  

Route History Analysis 

Analyzing a route’s history and current landscape can help you determine the best path forward. Some routes may be best to travel during different times of the year, while other routes may be susceptible to heavy storms. Analyzing these routes gives your business a better grasp of shipment times, dates, and overall demand for a specific lane. This allows you to be more to be more cost effective.  


Finding backhaul opportunities is a great way to limit empty miles where trucks travel without a load. Backhauls can increase revenue, but more importantly, they can improve sustainability. However, this requires coordination and precise timing throughout the delivery process. Also, carriers must find backhauls that fit their schedules and trailers. 

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