International shipping is if not the most then one of the most competitive markets in the world. Daily interaction of multiple players and multiple industries results in constant reshaping of the international shipping arena. In order to create success and meet the ever-changing expectations, it is critical for industry professionals to implement the “right strategies.” Strategies that will allow them to drive more profit, increase competitiveness and ensure optimum receipt of value from their shipping arrangements. In this context the real value of the “right strategy” is simply priceless.

There is no doubt 2017 will bring many ups and downs in the shipping industry. Implementing the right strategies and aligning with the right shipping provider can directly affect and make or break point of your company. Making informed and conscious decisions on this matter will change how individuals and their companies will perform in 2017.

There are many strategies that companies, individuals and industry leaders promote to help navigate what is on the horizon in the shipping market. However, these techniques and strategies can be proven wrong over time and stay inefficient as industry reshapes itself. On the other hand, if individuals can understand the principles behind successful strategy, they can apply them any time to craft the best plan and most effective technique that will uniquely fit them and provide them the optimum results.

I strongly recommend learning and adhering to the below principles I listed. They will allow you to craft techniques and strategies in international shipping and I can assure you even long after 2017 these nine principles will always naturally help you come up with the best plan and strategy in your shipping needs.

9 Critical Principles to Adhere to in 2017 for all your International Shipping Needs:

1) Seek Ease of Doing Business:

Always seek to achieve ease of doing business when making decisions. Aligning with a shipping provider, an overseas supplier, or a buyer that specifically ensures ease of communication and ease of funds transfer will take care the majority of the problems you will encounter on a daily basis. It is critical to align with partners that will make your life easier with their business practice, their service and their personal care.

2) Seek Ease of Contact:

Always seek to achieve ease of contact in your business decisions. Aligning with a shipping provider, an overseas supplier, a buyer, or a third party that will make it easy for you to contact them needs to be a top priority in international shipping and an undeniable principle for you. International shipping is a fast-paced, time sensitive industry that requires timely communication and ease of contact should be a must.

3) Seek Ease of Service Receipt:

Always seek to achieve ease of service. The methods you receive services in shipping needs to be easy and needs to align to your unique requirements and to your unique business practice. Instead of you adjusting and bending, the provider or the partner should be able to personalize the service according to individual needs and make it easy for service to be received.

5) Seek Availability of Service:

Always seek to achieve availability of service. It is crucial for you to have access to reliable service in critical time sensitive moments. Shipping is a fast-paced, time sensitive arena that needs basic and certain sophisticated services to be available on different platforms. Seek availability that aligns with your needs. Online platforms that allows shipment visibility and easy access to other value added services on multilevel platforms will be tomorrow’s business practice.

6) Seek Increase in Productivity:

Always seek to increase productivity. In today’s technology, shipping providers should be able to implement certain practices, and certain solutions that will boost productivity and add value to your organization. Seek, and negotiate ways to increase profitability, assign certain tasks to your provider for you to be able to focus other areas in your business practice and ensure more productivity. Be proactive when you encounter problems, use shipping providers tools and value added services to craft your shipping service so that it has a multiplying effect on your productivity and your efficiency.

7) Seek Reasonably Affordable and Market Aligned Pricing:

Always seek to work with reasonably affordable prices. When making decisions in price and cost related matters, it is critical not to use the cheapest option but rather to determine the best value in exchange of your funds. Remember that when buying shipping services you are aiming to exchange your funds to receive quality shipping service and real personal care. Aim to achieve win-win scenarios when purchasing. It is a complex and dynamic industry and it is also crucial for service providers, suppliers, and other third party players to use these funds to employ the best individuals to their team and train them well for better more quality service.

Remember not to make decisions based on price alone, majority of the time the cheapest options will result in extra cost later on in the transaction. “Best value” is the key phrase here.

8) Seek Additional Profit:

Always seek ways to achieve additional profit. Not savings – additional profit. Partnering with a service provider who can allow you to utilize overlooked opportunities will directly result in additional profits as well. Shipping providers who proactively seek ways to utilize overlooked opportunities will provide you with the necessary competitive edge in this industry for you to crush competitors. Let’s not forget that the full annual economic impact of shipping industry is more than 436 billion USD in the world. There is always overlooked opportunities and underutilized aspects in shipping. Seek to make decisions that align you with shipping partners who are proactively searching for ways to provide value that monetarily benefits you.

9) Seek to Achieve Reduced Risk:

Always seek to have peace of mind and make informed decisions on your calculated risk. Certain Shipping providers in the industry will help you to achieve reduced risk. Take advantage of additional insurance services, and align with shipping providers that are serious and effective in helping you reduce your overall exposure to both market trends and other cargo related risk.