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When it comes to finding freight companies that fit your needs, many businesses focus exclusively on traditional delivery methods. While transporting materials by rail, road, or sea will continue to play a significant role in the global marketplace, it is also important for businesses to understand how new advances in technology are changing logistics for the better. Here are just a few examples of how new tech is bringing about big change.

Drones

Drones are an increasingly common sight in the air, and with their wide range of applications, it should hardly be surprising that they are already playing a role in local deliveries. Though current drones are hardly fit for large-scale freight shipments, their convenience and reliability is already making an impact.

Currently, drone deliveries are generally limited to smaller packages, and can only be performed during favorable weather conditions. Don’t be surprised, however, to see new expansions to these services as the technology is fine-tuned.

In-Store Distribution

Another change in direct to consumer logistics is the rise of in-store distribution. Rather than shipping an item directly to the customer’s home address, many businesses are instead shipping from items their warehouse to local brick and mortar stores. The customers receive a notification once their item is ready for pickup, and go to the store to complete the transaction.

Such distribution methods help reduce costs for both manufacturers and consumers by reducing the need for smaller local delivery vehicles. They also reduce the risk of theft or accidental damage. Unsurprisingly, these benefits have resulted in the increasing popularity of this option in urban and suburban areas.

Autonomous Delivery

Perhaps the most newsworthy (and certainly most controversial) change to freight logistics is the introduction of fully autonomous vehicles. Several companies have begun testing driverless semi trucks, and the results so far have been encouraging. Automated delivery systems show great promise for reducing costs and improving overall efficiency of the global freight system.

However, it will likely be quite some time before such changes are implemented on a wide scale. Concerns over workforce displacement and safety regulations mean that fully automated freight vehicles will be gradually introduced to the roads. Still, this is one trend worth watching.

Such changes to the logistics marketplace are already affecting companies big and small. As logistics providers continue to adapt their services, businesses will find themselves with far more delivery options. While there will undoubtedly be a few hiccups along the way, this new tech is poised to ultimately make freight delivery more efficient and reliable than ever.

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