The Paradigm Shift in Freight Booking



Jan 16, 2024

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Recent years have brought about a paradigm shift in the freight industry with the advent of real-time spot market rating changing the game quietly but surely. Though at first the technologies that make real-time rating possible were limited to large, tech-backed brokerages like UberFreight, Convoy, C.H. Robinson, and XPO, that is no longer the case. Brokerages of all sizes are looking to embrace technology and bring the power of real-time rating into their toolboxes to drive more accurate bids faster, resulting in more revenue.

This article kicks off a series on real-time rating, its relevance in the modern freight industry, how it can be used to spur positive change, and the impacts it can have on freight businesses. We’ll cover how real-time rating goes above and beyond what you might think. It’s a multi-part process that encompasses API connectivity to a reliable cloud-based TMS, email automation, and bidboard connectivity.

API Connectivity with Shippers Enables Real-Time Rating

Real-time rating works best when shippers and brokers can exchange information directly through API connectivity. With the brokers’ rating standards set in place in advance, loads can then be sent directly into the rating engine from the shipper so that a quote can be produced in minutes rather than hours or even days.

The Benefits Brokerages Gain When They Can Offer Real-Time Rating

1. Faster Rating with Competitive, Real-Time Rates = Winning More Bids

Real-time rating means that brokers can get solid quotes back to their customers faster, leading to winning more bids, increasing business, and ultimately improving the bottom line.

Traditional routing guides, though they’ve been helpful for shippers and brokers both to exchange rates in the past, oftentimes contain outdated information.

2. Pricing Reflects Where Your Brokerage is Buying, Not Just Market Rates

When brokers are using a rating engine that is connected to not only market rates and their shippers but also their available capacity network, the quotes generated are customized to the rates the brokerage is likely to pay. When a brokerage has a surplus of capacity in a given lane, it’ll likely be able to buy capacity better. With their quote reflecting that, they’re able to offer more competitive bids and win more.

Naturally, when they’re pushing their advantage over the market in certain lanes, a broker can give margins a boost where they’ve got more capacity and therefore better buying power than competitors. Having a capacity management system underneath this process is critical and can differentiate the accuracy of your rating technology and your win rates.

3. Reps Can Get More Done

When quoting can occur nearly instantly with little input from the rep, reps can produce more quotes and give themselves and the brokerage more opportunities to win business.

Traditional rating might allow a rep to get in 20 or 30 quotes a day, whereas automated, API-connected real-time rating means reps can quote more than 1,000 loads per day. They aren’t worried about calculating, sending, and then following up on quotes. The shipper can send a request for a quote and the quote is generated almost instantly.

4. Simplified, Streamlined Booking from There

When real-time quotes are generated through an API-connected system, the booking process is then streamlined. When the bid is accepted, the load enters the TMS, an ideal carrier can be assigned, and the system can automatically send the rate-con to the carrier. Most of the busy work involved in the traditional booking process can be automated so that reps have more time to book even more loads.

Interested in Learning More About API Connected Real-Time Rating?

Parade’s latest iteration of Advantage, our real-time rating engine, combines real-time market data with capacity data to generate spot-on quotes. You can learn more about the product and how it can help your brokerage win by reaching out to our reps here.

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