• Your No-Nonsense Guide to Dimensional Weight Pricing

    06/28/2021 — Leah Palnik

    If you regularly ship with UPS or FedEx, you’ve likely encountered dimensional (DIM) weight pricing whether you realized it or not. Essentially it’s a way for the carriers to charge you more for larger, but lighter, packages. And if you’re not careful, it can drive up your costs significantly.

    What is dimensional weight pricing?
    Dimensional weight pricing is a way to rate your packages based on density in relation to weight. What that means is that instead of rating your package purely based on its actual weight, it also takes into account how much space your package takes up on the carriers’ delivery vehicles.

    How do you calculate dimensional weight pricing?
    Luckily for you, we have a DIM weight calculator you can use. But if you’re curious about the formula behind it, it’s fairly simple. Start by calculating the cubic size of your package – multiply length by width by height. Then take that total and divide it by 139, which is the dimensional divisor determined by FedEx and UPS. If the resulting DIM weight is higher than your actual weight, the DIM weight becomes the weight you’ll be rated on – otherwise known as your billable weight.

    DIM Weight Calculation

    Let’s look at a couple simple examples. If you have a 12x12x12 box, the dimensional weight will be 12 lbs. So if you’re shipping 15 lbs. of books, your package will be rated based on the actual weight of 15 lbs. But if you’re shipping 5 lbs. of ping pong balls, your package will be rated based on the DIM weight of 12 lbs. since it’s the higher weight.

    Why is dimensional weight pricing used?
    UPS and FedEx want to discourage shippers from using unnecessarily large packaging, and there is one main reason for this. The larger your package is, the more space it occupies on their planes and trucks. This in turn, leaves less room for other packages. UPS and FedEx make more money and work far more efficiently if they’re able to fill up their delivery vehicles with more packages.

    The history of dimensional weight pricing
    Once upon a time, not all shipments were subject to DIM weight pricing. The DIM factor that FedEx and UPS use has also changed over time – and not in a way that’s favorable to shippers. While the DIM weight formula and shipment qualifications have remained steady for a few years now, there’s no guarantee that it’ll stay that way. Let this be a lesson on how important it is to stay alert on any announced changes from both carriers.

    How do you avoid overpaying due to dimensional weight pricing?
    The most important thing you should be doing to avoid DIM weight pricing is right-sizing your packaging. You need to consider both the size of the item you’re shipping and also how fragile it is. Items that are at a greater risk of damage will need more cushioning, which will take up more space. Try to find packaging that allows enough room for the needed cushioning, but no more. The smaller you can make your package, while still keeping your item safe, the better.

    There are a few resources available that you can use to find the right packaging for the items you’re shipping. UPS has a Packaging Advisor tool on their website that allows you to select your merchandise category and enter your dimensions to get customized packaging and cushioning guidelines.

    FedEx also has a number of packaging guides based on the type of item you’re shipping. But beyond that, FedEx even has a Packaging Lab where you can send your packaging in for durability testing or request a design consultation to improve the efficiency of your packaging. Many of the services are free if you have an account.

    Keeping your small package costs low
    While ensuring you have efficient packaging to avoid DIM weight pricing is one way to help reduce your shipping costs, another is securing discounts with the carriers. That can be difficult for small and medium sized businesses to negotiate on their own. However, when you work with PartnerShip you can access savings that are typically reserved for high volume shippers. Contact our team to learn more.

    DIM Weight Infographic

    Click to read more...
  • The Top 4 Reasons Your Freight Is Late

    06/22/2021 — Jen Deming

    Despite the very best of intentions, sometimes your freight delivery may be running a little behind. Though not every contributing factor is within your control, there are some tips you can take to lessen the impact of delay in these common scenarios.

    Freight Delay Infographic

    Click to read more...
  • Welcome to Our Newest Employees!

    06/16/2021 — Jen Deming

    Here at PartnerShip, we truly value our team members and put a strong emphasis on connectivity between staff. During the past year, working remotely has made it more challenging to maintain our culture, but that hasn't changed our commitment to supporting each other. We recently brought on six new staff members and while we get to know them, we thought you'd also like to help us welcome them to the team! Learn more about these new faces of PartnerShip below. 

    Bianca Pate

    What do you like to do in your free time?

    I collect tropical houseplants and have a vegetable garden. I also spend a lot of time making macrame art, sketching, reading and going hiking.

    Do you have any nicknames?

    All of my friends call me Bea.

    What is your favorite 90s Jam?

    Say It Ain't So - Weezer

    What's the best vacation you've been on?

    Every few months my partner and I drive to Asheville, NC to go hiking. It’s my favorite place, so it’s always the best to get away in the mountains.

    What do your colleagues say is your best attribute?

    My favorite coworker from one of my past jobs says I am great at talking to people and meeting them where they are at.


    Mary Anne

    What do you like to do in your free time?

    Walk the park with my dog Bella and visit with my grandbabies.

    Do you have any nicknames?

    Yes, Grace.

    What is your favorite 90s Jam?

    Don't have one.

    What's the best vacation you've been on?

    Visiting my grandbabies in West Virginia.

    What do your colleagues say is your best attribute?

    My outgoing personality!


    Rae Millican

    What do you like to do in your free time?

    I spend my free time having fun with my two daughters. I also enjoy collecting really old books and doing activities outside around the bay.

    Do you have any nicknames?

    Rae Rae

    What is your favorite 90s Jam?

    Alice in Chains – Man in the Box

    What's the best vacation you've been on?

    Best Scenery: Lake Louise (Banff National Park). Most Fun: Italy/New Orleans/Key West

    What do your colleagues say is your best attribute?

    My helpful attitude.


    JT McDonald

    What do you like to do in your free time?

    I race Motocross, play guitar, play with my dogs Ryder & Sophie and try out new recipes

    Do you have any nicknames?

    JT is a nickname that was given to me when I was about a week old. My full name is John Thomas but my Dad’s name is also John. A week in my parents realized that calling me John would be confusing and John Thomas was too long so JT was what they settled on and I’ve gone by that since.

    What is your favorite 90s Jam?

    One Headlight - The Wallflowers

    What's the best vacation you've been on?

    Waikoloa Hawaii. Such a beautiful place with great beaches, volcanos to explore and amazing food.

    What do your colleagues say is your best attribute?

    My ability to wear many hats and take on any project.


    Paris Thomas

    What do you like to do in your free time?

    I like to catch up on my reading in my free time.

    Do you have any nicknames?

    No nicknames.

    What is your favorite 90s Jam?

    Return of the Mack - Mark Morrison

    What's the best vacation you've been on?

    Dominican Republic - when I was married.

    What do your colleagues say is your best attribute?

    I'm very aware of my surroundings and I'm always willing to learn.


    Paris Thomas

    What do you like to do in your free time?

    Spend time with my children.

    Do you have any nicknames?

    No.

    What is your favorite 90s Jam?

    Wonderwall - Oasis

    What's the best vacation you've been on?

    Universal Studios.

    What do your colleagues say is your best attribute?

    Kindness.


    Click to read more...
  • Pallet Packing Mistakes to Avoid

    06/10/2021 — Leah Palnik

    Pallet Packing: Common Mistakes to Avoid

    Pallet packing isn’t something you can take lightly. One wrong move and the whole shipment could lose strength and stability – risking damage to your freight. Rather than conducting your own experiments, check out these common pallet packing mistakes so you know what to avoid.

    Mistake #1: Choosing the wrong pallet
    Pallet packing begins at the very foundation of your shipment – the pallet itself. It may be tempting to reuse old pallets for your shipments but if you’re not looking out for structural integrity, you could be in trouble. Avoid using pallets with broken boards or protruding nail heads.

    Using an alternative material pallet can also cause some issues. Wooden pallets are the standard, but pallets made from metal, plastic, and corrugated materials have all entered the market. However, not all pallets are created equal. These pallets are good alternatives for certain specialized needs, but issues like weight, movement, and pallet strength make them not suitable for all types of freight. Before you consider swaying from wooden pallets, make sure to do your research.

    Mistake #2: Not properly packing individual boxes
    Before you can stack your pallet, you need to pack your individual boxes or cartons. Even if your boxes are secure on the pallet, the contents inside the cartons can shift. Leaving excess space and not providing proper impact protection is a common mistake that many shippers make. Start by right-sizing your boxes – leave just enough room for the product and the needed impact protection. Anything more is wasted space that you will need to fill with cushioning like paper pad or packing peanuts.

    Mistake #3: Stacking inadequately
    You may think that the way you stack your cartons is just about making it fit on your pallet. However, neglecting to follow certain best practices that increase strength can be a fatal mistake. During pallet packing, not evenly distributing weight and not placing the heaviest boxes at the bottom is a quick way to increase your risk of damage. Using pallets that are too small and thus leaving overhang is also a common mistake that will make your freight vulnerable.

    The stacking patterns you use when packing your pallet are also extremely important. One of the biggest offenders is pyramid stacking. This kind of pallet packing pattern leaves the cartons at the top at greater risk of being damaged and makes the load less secure. When possible, an aligned column pattern is best. Stacking your pallet in a way that ensures it is level and flat will put you in the best position to avoid damage.

    Mistake #4: Skimping on stretch wrap
    If you don’t currently use a stretch wrap machine, you want to make sure your manual wrapping technique is up to par. There are a couple common mistakes to look out for. First, make sure you’re wrapping around the pallet enough. You should be making at least 5 wraps around the entire shipment. Second, twisting the wrap is something that is often overlooked. You should twist the wrap every other rotation to increase the durability.

    Mistake #5: Not labeling correctly
    After you go through all that work of ensuring you’ve packed your pallet in a way that reduces its risk of damage, you don’t want to run into issues just because you neglected to label your shipment properly. One label is not enough. You want to make sure the shipping label is on each side of your pallet, with the consignee information clearly visible.

    Pallet packing may seem simple, but these missteps can create complicated issues. If you’ve discovered that you’ve made any of these common mistakes and want to learn more about packaging best practices, download our free white paper!

    The Ultimate Guide to Packaging Your Shipments


    Click to read more...

Awards & Affiliations

Partner Name
Truckstop
Northcoast 99
NASTC
BBB
Smartway
Northeast Ohio Top Workplaces
Ohio Best Employer