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Convoy shipper platform automates contract rates for shippers of all sizes

ShippersPublished on June 18, 2020

Small and mid-sized shippers often miss out on the cost-savings, flexibility, and high quality service that contract freight provides. To better serve shippers of all sizes, Convoy is excited to announce automated contract rates through the Convoy shipper platform. With two types of contract rates available at four different durations, it’s never been easier to find the right solution for your freight needs. 

Convoy guarantees contract quote turnaround within two business days or less, quickly giving you the data you need to feel confident in your coverage and supply chain costs. This new process was designed to help reduce supply chain uncertainty – especially for lower-volume shippers who have difficulty acquiring competitive contract rates. Whether you’re looking for primary, backup, or spot –  Convoy has you covered.

What type of contract freight is right for your business?

Convoy is uniquely positioned to serve primary, backup, and spot freight, and can help shippers reduce risk in tight and soft markets by allocating freight to our digital freight network.

Primary Contracts

The goal of primary contract freight is to create stability in the supply chain and minimize surprises. If you need guaranteed coverage on lanes with predictable volume, a primary contract is right for you. Primary contracts help protect you from market volatility with guaranteed rates and reliable capacity, even when the market is tight. 

Backup Contracts

Because primary carriers can reject loads due to market shifts, unpredictable volume surges, or other unforeseen events, it’s always a good idea to have backup contracts with reliable carriers.  This will help you avoid the volatility of the spot market even when your primary carrier is unable to accept the load. Adding Convoy as a backup carrier is a great option as our digital freight network makes rates and capacity instantly bookable, saving precious time and money when primary contracts fail.

Contract Duration 

The length of your contract will have an effect on the rate you receive from Convoy. Three-month contract rates will closely reflect current market conditions, while 6, 9 and 12 month rates will factor in expected market shifts such as fluctuating demand and seasonality.

Are there other options?

Spot Freight

Spot freight is usually seen as a shipper’s last resort as the spot market is typically more expensive, and has higher risk. On the spot market, shippers also worry about inconsistent service levels from unfamiliar carriers. To mitigate this, Convoy only tenders spot freight to our trusted carrier network which adheres to the industry’s most stringent quality and compliance standards. The efficiency of a digital freight network also means that spot freight can even come in at a lower cost than your primary and backup freight options, especially in soft markets. In addition to supporting contract rates, the Convoy shipper platform also provides instantly bookable, guaranteed rates for spot freight. In situations where shippers need to move freight urgently, this easy quote-and-book solution provides additional peace of mind by eliminating the time that would otherwise be spent waiting for carriers to accept a tender.

Benefits of Automated Contract Rates 

Our automated contract rate process was designed to make requesting and receiving contract rates hassle-free. If you’re tired of back-and-forth negotiations, undefined timelines and vendor uncertainty, then this is the tool for you. 

How requesting contract rates typically works: 

  1. Make a call to the vendor(s) you are requesting a rate from.  
  2. Wait for a call back. 
  3. Negotiate over the phone. 
  4. Agree on a rate.
  5. Wait for a contract to be sent to you. 
  6. Confirm the contract. 
  7. Start shipping.
  8. Audit shipment invoices to ensure contract rates were given.

How Convoy’s Contract Rate tool works: 

  1. Within the Convoy shipper platform – click on “Interested in Contract Rates?” in the lower navigation.
  2. Submit the lane details. 
  3. Receive rate confirmation within 2 business days.
  4. The contract rate will be visible and automatically applied to your shipment.

With Convoy’s new automated contract rates, you can eliminate calls and increase efficiency. To check out these new capabilities and more, sign up for the Convoy shipper platform today.

Convoy shipper platform is now part of Convoy’s integrated online platform for shippers. For more information, take a look at our freight booking software.


Katie Welch

Katie is a Senior Product Marketing Manager at Convoy where she focuses on optimizing and scaling marketing programs for carriers. She has spent most of her career in startups building full funnel marketing programs for both B2B and B2C businesses.
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