When you understand what is pool distribution, you’ll learn that it’s a shipment option that allows many companies to pool together multiple shipments on a single truck. Pool distribution differs from LTL shipping because you’re not “sharing the load” with other companies. Instead, your product is the only freight on the truck from your distribution center to the pool point. Then when the freight arrives at the pool point, it’s separated and sent to its final destination.
Pool distribution is a valuable shipping method for companies looking to reduce transportation costs, improve transit times, and want more control on tracking and delivering their freight (unlike LTL, which is more difficult to follow).
What is Pool Distribution?
Pool distribution is when you “pool” together multiple shipments going to the same geographic region to save on transportation costs. Your freight goes through four main steps during the pool distribution process.
- Packages are pooled together into single or multiple truckload shipments.
- Packages are delivered to the distribution center (AKA “pool points”).
- Packages are sorted and segregated to their destination.
- Packages are loaded onto local trucks for their final mile delivery.
Pool Consolidation & Pool Distribution
Pool consolidation is the first part of the pool distribution process. It’s when several shipments are consolidated into a truck going to the same location (i.e., distribution center or final destination). Pool consolidation is ideal if multiple manufacturers are shipping products to the same retailer location; they can share the truckload.
Pool consolidation requires additional coordination since it involves more than one company. Third-party logistics (3PL) providers provide pool consolidation services to allow them to handle all the shipment details, including:
- Shipping schedules
- Delivery dates
- Truck availability
When you work with a trusted 3PL, like Beitler, they can accommodate your different needs between pool distribution logistics and pool consolidation services. While helping to ensure an efficient delivery system and reducing the need for multiple receiving and dock doors.
When to Use Pool Distribution?
If you’re unsure if pool distribution is the right fit for your company, here are some things to consider.
- High frequency of regular LTL-size shipments
- A reasonable volume of shipments going to a specific region
- Freight that’s between 150 to 10,000 pounds
- Ability to set your delivery day and time
- Allows you to deliver loose cartons or pallets
5 Tips for Pool Distribution Success
If you’re new to the pool distribution process, here are some tips to help you navigate the process to ensure pool distribution success for your company.
#1 Work with a Reputable 3PL
A 3PL provider can handle all the details of the shipment process to save you time and resources.
- Package detail from shipping to receiving
- Inventory visibility and control
- Sort and seg
- Retail store delivery
#2 Learn More About Pool Consolidation
Once you find a trusted 3PL, talk to your representative to learn more if your company could benefit from pool consolidation services and save you even more money.
#3 Improve Your Shipping Visibility
Unlike LTL shipments that don’t always provide exact tracking, pool shipments can provide accurate details. So now you can confidently know where your packages are and when to expect delivery.
#4 Increase Your Shipping Speed
Since you’re not “sharing the load,” the truck makes minimal stops, allowing your packages to arrive faster to their destination.
#5 Customize Your Shipment Options
Working with a trusted 3PL provider allows them to meet your needs in several areas, including unexpected changes.
- Disaster deliveries
- Expedited shipments
- New store setups
Finding Your Shipping Partner
At Beitler Logistics Services, our team can access our expansive network of carriers for your pool distribution needs. At the same time, we are providing you with competitive pricing, shipment liability, removing any redundancies, and more.
Learn more about pool distribution services.
Contact us when you’re ready to learn more information.