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What is FlockDirect®?

17 May 2021


Flock Freight, Freight Shipping 101, Shippers

Flock Freight’s streamlined shipping solution for midsize freight is also slashing carbon emissions.

In this blog:

Flock Freight offers FlockDirect®—a shared truckload (STL) service. If you want to learn more, you’ve come to the right place. We’re going to walk you through the difference between STL and FlockDirect®, best-use scenarios, and how this sustainable shipping solution is the perfect fit for your difficult-to-move freight—so you can lower your business’s carbon footprint and start shipping hassle-free at the same time.

Ready to watch your shipping problems melt away with FlockDirect®? Let’s dive in.

optimized routes diagram


The chicken or the egg: shared truckload versus FlockDirect®

What’s the difference between shared truckload shipping and FlockDirect®, anyway?

Short answer: Shared truckload is the freight mode, FlockDirect® is the service. Let’s explain further.

Shared truckload shipping, which enables several businesses to share trailer space in one multi-stop full truckload, takes a familiar concept (sharing) and applies it to the trucking industry to help shippers and carriers create optimal shipping outcomes. STL is a hubless shipping mode that uses advanced algorithms to pool midsize freight (between four to 22 pallets) from multiple shippers when it’s moving in the same direction. Compared to other common freight shipping modes, such as less than truckload (LTL) or truckload (TL), shared truckload consistently comes out on top for shippers, carriers, and the planet alike.

[Want to learn more about shared truckload shipping? Download our guide to STL here.]

What are the perks of using smart technology to pool shipments? Flock Freight’s algorithms nimbly sift through thousands of possible combinations and optimize the best possible route for freight, thereby filling trucks to capacity (so carriers earn more) and helping the planet by eliminating unnecessary mileage. Plus, shippers benefit from a stronger, more sustainable supply chain with greener transit, safer delivery, and more accurate tracking.

On its own, STL reduces shipping emissions by up to 40% by skipping inefficient pickup and delivery routes and bypassing energy-consuming LTL terminals — making it an inherently sustainable freight mode. 

FlockDirect® is the freight industry’s only guaranteed shared truckload shipping service that’s reducing greenhouse emissions. Only Flock Freight customers can book FlockDirect® at the point of sale to ensure their freight moves faster, safer, and greener in a shared truckload—without compromising on price or service. 

When should you book FlockDirect®?

FlockDirect® brings truckload-style service to shipments of any size, at a fraction of the cost. This means:

  • Direct, hubless transit
  • Full control over pickup and delivery dates
  • No hidden LTL accessorial fees
  • 99.99% damage free
  • Shippers only pay for the space they need

FlockDirect® is your best option for freight that fits any of the following descriptions:

  • Hard to move, and at exceptionally high risk of damage moving through the hub-and-spoke network
  • Bulky, abnormal dimensions, non-palletized, or floor-loaded
  • Fragile or high-value
  • Subject to strict pickup and delivery appointments
  • Too big for LTL, but too small to fill a full truck (8-44 linear feet)
  • Needs to move fast, with no delays

Plus, shipping with Flock Freight means you’ll have access to unparalleled levels of customer support while partnering with a logistics provider that uses business as a force for good. (Flock Freight is the first and only Certified B Corp in the freight shipping industry, meaning we are committed to creating a positive impact on the environment, our stakeholders, and our community.) Who wouldn’t want to solve all their shipping headaches while simultaneously fighting climate change?  

Here’s why shipping with Flock Freight is better

Our customers have three options for moving their freight: standard LTL, STL (via FlockDirect®), and TL.

Shippers, we get it — sometimes standard LTL is the way to go when you’re on a strict budget, on a lax deadline, or when you’re shipping a few pallets of sturdy goods. But here’s what makes LTL shipping with Flock Freight different.

When shippers book our standard LTL option, we will still try to pool your freight, thereby upgrading it to a better, eco-friendly shared truckload shipment.

You can think of this in terms of airplane seating. When you buy an economy plane ticket, you expect the worst (last to board, no legroom, typically ending up stuck next to the bathrooms). But imagine hearing someone calling your name from the gate and — surprise! — the airline has upgraded you to a business class seat, for no extra cost.

That’s what happens every day when we’re able to move our shippers’ LTL freight in a shared truckload. With standard LTL shipping, freight is at high risk of delays, damage, and excessive fuel waste. But with shared truckload, shipments move directly to their destinations on one truck, eliminating all risk of damage and reducing the environmental impact of transportation.

If your business typically moves full truckloads of freight, we have an option that gives you instant money off of contracted truckload freight rates when your shipments don’t fill the entire trailer: Instant Prebate. (You can learn how shippers are using Instant Prebate to build a smarter TL RFP in our free white paper.)

You might be thinking: All of that’s nice, but what do I do if I want the peace of mind that comes with guaranteed shared truckload service?

Just book FlockDirect® at the point of sale. It’s as simple as that.


Sustainable shipping for no additional cost

Got sustainability on your mind? Then FlockDirect® is the shipping method for you.

All FlockDirect® shipments move with shared truckload service. On its own, shared truckload reduces carbon emissions by up to 40% per shipment with smart and streamlined transit.

At Flock Freight, we believe sustainable shipping is the future—and we back up that belief with actions that make a difference. In 2021, our goal is to save 20,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) with shared truckload shipping. These savings equal:

  • Recycling 850,990 trash bags instead of sending them to landfills
  • Sequestering the same amount of carbon in one year as 24,504 acres of U.S. forest

The perfect fit for partials and volume LTL

Shippers that need to move 10-plus linear feet of freight face a real problem these days.

As capacity in the LTL industry continues to shrink, LTL carriers are slowly tightening linear-foot caps on freight shipments and increasing rates on shipments that fall outside of their ideal linear-foot range. The result? Shippers find themselves caught between a rock and a hard place when it’s time to move their volume LTL or partial freight.

Shippers moving midsize shipments may find themselves paying through the nose on volume LTL rates, moving partials through a clunky network of consolidators, or even overpaying on TL service as a last resort. However, none of these options are ideal for moving freight between 8-44 linear feet. 

The solution: FlockDirect®. Our guaranteed shared truckload service gives shippers the perfect solution for midsize shipments by removing the need for subjective linear-foot caps, delivering on time, and moving shipments faster than the LTL or consolidator networks. 


Why you should choose FlockDirect® today

If you’re a logistics professional whose business needs sound like any of the following, then it’s time to work FlockDirect® into your long-term strategy:

  • Your business is on the way to a net-zero business model, and needs a sustainable shipping option to reduce your climate impact
  • Your company is tired of wasting money on remaking and reshipping damaged freight
  • Your supply chain could benefit from a reliable and seamless freight-shipping mode that delivers when it says it will
  • Your bottom line is suffering from sending freight in less-than-completely-full truckloads, but you’re still paying for 100% of deck space

At Flock Freight, we’re working on—not in—the freight industry by eliminating inefficiency and disrupting the status quo, one pooled load at a time. Ready to see what FlockDirect® can do for you?