West Michigan Shipping

6 Reasons to Select a Custom Carrier Instead of a 3PL Provider

Your company’s reputation and prosperity hinge upon your ability to deliver your products swiftly and accurately. With the expertise of an accomplished custom carrier, you will increase your percentage of timely deliveries while conserving costs and resources. Below are six strategies to help you find the right custom carrier for your business.

1) Seek a well-connected carrier that can add value to your business. Choosing a custom carrier that can offer innovative solutions is vital to helping your company grow. As you compare potential partners, ask them about the technology they use to increase delivery efficiency and accuracy while controlling costs for clients. Top custom carriers will be eager to share their strategies for efficiency.

2) Ask potential providers how they can help you consolidate your shipments. This strategy will help your company maximize time, resources, and profit margin. In addition to preventing loading dock congestion, you can save on fuel charges and other shipping costs.

3) Select a custom carrier with a desirable location. Before committing to a carrier, take a look at your customer base to determine whether your customers are concentrated in a particular area of the country. Also, if you have customers in Canada or other countries, you should ensure that you choose a carrier with a location in the northern region of the United States to facilitate shipments.

4) Choose a carrier who will listen to your goals and objectives. Selecting a partner who is interested in helping you achieve your goals is critical. The custom carrier you seek should be readily accessible and responsive to your requests.

5) Be sure to provide sufficient information when requesting an estimate. This measure helps to ensure that you are comparing apples to apples when evaluating carriers. For instance, if a customer requires lift-gate and inside delivery before 3:00 P.M., be sure to note this on your request.

6) Ensure that your custom carrier has the scalability to handle future growth. As you evaluate potential carriers, be sure to outline your plans for future growth and confirm that prospective partners have the resources to grow alongside your company.

The Bottom Line

Finding a trusted custom carrier for your business is the key to minimizing delivery errors and optimizing customer satisfaction. At Zip Xpress, we think that every customer deserves to receive their orders safely, securely, and ahead of schedule. In addition to offering scalability, freight consolidation, and personalized service, Zip Xpress offers a plethora of solutions designed to facilitate delivery of your orders quickly and efficiently. We encourage you to contact our team of industry experts to learn why Zip Xpress is Michigan’s top provider of custom carrier solutions.

Electric Semi

Meijer Buys Into Tesla Semi After Price Announcement

Tesla recently announced that its electric freight truck, the Tesla Semi, will have an expected base price of $150,000 (300-mile range) or $180,000 (500-mile range). These tentative costs, which are lower than previously anticipated, make the Tesla Semi an attractive option over conventional trucks. For example, an average Class 8 truck costs about $0.54 per mile, compared with Tesla’s $0.26 per mile. Add in the significant cost savings associated with maintaining an electric engine compared with a gas-burning one, and the Tesla starts to look like a no-brainer. As previously reported in this blog, Tesla’s advantages go beyond cost to include speed and safety innovations.

Michigan-based retailer Meijer is looking to Tesla to potentially improve its fleet’s efficiency and reduce costs. The company ordered four trucks, giving it the chance to be among the first to test the electric vehicles.

“This new Tesla truck technology, (sic) has the potential to not only reduce our carbon footprint but also realize cost savings that will allow us to keep prices low for our customers,” the company’s spokesman Frank Guglielmi reported to milve.com.

Meijer, which has 235 stores across the Midwest, currently uses Freightliner Cascadia trucks featuring fuel-efficient, reduced-emissions engines. The company made a $5,000 per vehicle down payment and will decide after testing whether to complete the purchase. Tesla expects to begin Semi production starting in 2019.

Zip Xpress will be following news from both Tesla and Meijer as the electric freight fleet makes its way from test track to highway. Keep up with what’s driving change in trucking at Zip Xpress.




ltl shipping providers

Giving Thanks

Thanksgiving is upon us once again and we have so much to be grateful for!

We’re grateful to be the trusted provider of logistical solutions for our clients and to have their continued support. We’re grateful to our Zip drivers who come in and make their pickups at our customers with their dedicated service to the company.
We’re grateful for our entire staff of great employees who have made great customer service their mission for Zip Xpress. In an industry where the customer’s needs often comes second, we’re grateful for our employees for keeping our focus on you the customer.

We’re grateful for our innovative team who created our unique Expedited LTL Service, Blanket Wrap Service and our Headload Service which allows us to rise and become one of the most sustainable service providers in the nation.

Finally, we’re grateful for you the customer. If it wasn’t for you, we wouldn’t be Michigan’s premier courier. If it wasn’t for you, we wouldn’t be able to build towards our mission of being one of the most sustainable logistics companies in the market. We thank you every day for your business, but we wanted to do so in public.

Tesla Semi

The Tesla Semi – A Fully-Electric Semi Truck

The electric-power titan Tesla unveiled a brand new, all-electric semi truck, the Tesla Semi. From 0 to 60 in 5 seconds, the Tesla Semi is a truck that will stand out on the roads and change future freighting traffic.

The electric-power titan Tesla unveiled a brand new, all-electric semi truck, the Tesla Semi. From 0 to 60 in 5 seconds, the Tesla Semi is a truck that will stand out on the roads and change future freighting traffic.

The Semi beats out traditional diesel-powered trucks in many respects. Towing its full capacity of 80,000 pounds, the Semi goes from 0 to 60 in only 20 seconds. On a 5% grade, the Tesla Semi can go up to 65 miles per hour, while diesel-powered trucks top out at 45 miles per hour.

Tesla claims that this speed is complemented by better handling and responsiveness than its diesel competitors, meaning trips will be accomplished more quickly coupled with increased protection. Added safety and assistance features include surround view cameras, two touchscreens to assist with blind spot removal and potential hazard detection and provide trip-log applications, and even Enhanced Autopilot technology. The Semi’s Autopilot features automatic braking, lane keeping, and lane departure alerts.



Charged by solar power, Tesla’s Megachargers provide the Semi with up to 400 miles of range in a single 30 minute charge. On a full charge, the Semi boasts a range of up to 900 miles, and Tesla hopes to place Megachargers worldwide, so Semi drivers can recharge whenever and wherever they need. The use of solar and electric energy reduces the carbon footprint of the Tesla Semi, providing a sustainable and ecologically-friendly option for those who use semi trucks.

With the Semi, Tesla seeks to create a smoother, faster, safer driving experience. Borrowing from their supercars, Tesla built the Semi to be extremely aerodynamic and able to travel quickly without wasting time or energy. Individual Model 3 wheel motors for each wheel helps prevent jackknifing by detecting changes in the truck’s stability and torquing the necessary wheels and braking as needed.

Due to their lack of a traditional internal combustion engine, Tesla says that the Semi will require a lot less maintenance than their diesel-powered predecessors. Tesla backs their Semis with a one million mile warranty against any breakdowns, hoping to use the Semi to revolutionize the future of shipping and freighting.

At Zip Xpress, we’re excited about Tesla’s innovation and introduction of electric vehicles to the semi-truck market. Sustainability is a topic most semi truck manufacturers have missed, but with the Tesla Semi, sustainable driving is now on the horizon.

To stay up-to-date on the latest innovations in trucking, follow Zip Xpress today!

less than truckload

5 Reasons Why You Need a Custom Carrier Solution Today!

What would the best possible Custom Carrier solution look like? Why do you need a Custom Carrier solution today? Here are 5 good reasons.

1. Load optimization.

They optimize loads so that they are maximally efficient. This is not only good for the customer in terms of cost and efficiency, it is good for the environment.

2. White Glove Shipping.

They do “white glove” shipping. White glove shipping is for items which are delicate or fragile and need extra care during loading and transit. Some items are sensitive to heat or cold and need special handling. They care about the big things but focus on the details.

3. Special Needs Accommodation.

They accommodate customer special needs. They understand that, while every business or concern, large or small, is equal, they are each different and unique. They go that extra mile to get that package where it needs to go, when it needs to get there. And that means door-to-door if necessary.

4. A custom carrier would deliver on time and damage free 

Custom Carriers get it there quicker and with less chance of damage.

5. Expedited Shipping

When you really need it there quickly, they can expedite it and get it done. Usually, the customer plans expedited shipping ahead of time. But circumstances sometimes change suddenly, and if the customer faces unanticipated shipping needs, this Custom Carrier can do that too.

What shipping company comes to mind when you think Custom Carrier? Likely only oneZip Xpress! They care about sustainability in operations. That goes for the roadways and the planet, as well. They haul long or short distances, but when it comes to the environment and the planet, they know it’s all about the long haul.

Zip Xpress embodies that commitment to sustainability.  Zip Xpress should be the one company that comes to mind when you think Custom Carrier. From customer satisfaction to environmental sustainability, Zip Xpress delivers. 

less than truckload freight

Driver Shortage Overtakes ELDs as Top Trucking Concern in 2017

The trucking industry has focused this year on the upcoming major switch to Electronic Logging Devices. That change will be the largest in record keeping for the industry since the 1930s.

Meanwhile, as outlined by James Jaillet in his article Driver Shortage overtakes ELD Mandate, Hours as  Carriers’ Top Concern, the chronic problem of truck driver shortage has quietly resumed its position as the #1 largest problem that the trucking industry faces, followed by the ELD mandate, and hours. This is according to the American Transportation Research Institute, which tracks the top 10 problems facing the industry annually.

Zip Xpress is one company that is working to change the antiquated and wasteful practices of the trucking industry. They coordinate logistics and loads to avoid the wasted space common in standard shipping. They have illustrated vivid comparisons in everyday shipping practices, and charted the differences best practices can make. You can view these comparisons on their site here.

What can we do? That is the question they ask.

Eliminating wasted space not only makes sense for the reasons noted. It could impact driver shortages in a positive way. It also makes sense to put less carbon emissions into our overtaxed atmosphere every day. It makes sense to alleviate traffic congestion and road wear.

The top three concerns, listed above, are the driver shortage, the ELD mandate, and the hours regulations. They really aren’t three completely separate concerns, but a connected group. Imagine an empty truck between each two full trucks on the road today.

That’s how much wasted space Zip Xpress estimates to occur in normal daily shipping.

We need to remove that empty truck from the road, Zip Xpress says. If the entire trucking industry adopted the optimal shipping practices that they recommend, the driver shortage would certainly be smaller and less of a problem also. The same attitude of optimization and sustainability could improve driver training and experience. Creative thinking, efficiency, and an emphasis on sustainability for both people and the planet are key to improved conditions in any area.


5 Things to Know About the ELD

5 Things You Need to Know About the ELD

The long-distance trucking industry is about to get a technology update on December 18th, as the log books that have traditionally been used to track drivers hours will be going electronic. After a long wait, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) published the final electronic logging device rule — or ELD mandate. What is it exactly? And, what does it mean for commercial motor carriers and truck drivers? The log books will only be used for emergency backup purposes. This is causing many logistical headaches for a lot of trucking companies as they ensure that their fleets of vehicles are properly upgraded and equipped with the new mandated time log machines. It also creates extra anxiety for many drivers as they learn to use this new technology and ensure that their hours are properly logged.

However, this technology is guaranteed to be coming in the near future so everyone will need to learn how to adapt to this new technology if they continue to track driver’s time accurately.

The following are 5 things that it is essential to know about the upcoming ELD requirements that will go into effect on December 18th:

  • The December 17th Deadline is Likely Permanent: It is highly unlikely that the date that the ELD will be required to be in use by will be pushed back any further than December 18th. This is true despite many companies voicing their concern over being ready to fully implement this system with their fleets. Seeing that the rule has survived many legal challenges it is unlikely that anything else is going to stop the ELD from being released. Some people are trying to get Congress to try to overturn the ELD, however, that is unlikely to happen as no action has been taken thus far.
  • Drivers Will Have More Control Over Editing: Drivers will be able to edit their logs according to regulations set forward in the ELD. Drivers will have all edits they make to their long “pending” in status until that edit is approved, however, if the edit is “rejected” the ELD will have a reconciliatory procedure in place for drivers to go through so that they are appropriately compensated for their hours worked.
  • Many ELD Systems Will Offer Much More Than Just Electronic Logs: Low-cost systems that just track driver’s hours will be available but many will be able to do much more. Some will be able to provide reports on the amount of fuel used and others will offer to dispatch, messaging, and workflow applications. Whatever the fleet needs these electronic trackers to track they can track. You can choose for it to be much or little as you want it to be. Consequently, you can also determine how little or much your company wants to spend equipping their vehicles with this technology.
  • Choosing the Right Provider For Your Fleet: It will also be key that you choose the right provider to provide the ELD technology services to your fleet. Ensure that your devices are all compliant with the ELD regulations and requirements. Be sure that the service provider you choose has a solid financial background and will be there to provide service for years into the future.
  • Develop Procedures & Policies For Your Fleet: Provide policies and procedures to your managers on how these systems should be used. Train your drivers to use the systems only in accordance with the company policies developed to avoid misuse of these systems and to ensure that the new systems are used only for what they are meant to be used for.

The ELD system is coming December 18th, so use these great tips to ensure that your fleet and your drivers are prepared!



Team Zip Xpress Turning Steps Into Wishes For Make a Wish Michigan

In just a few short weeks, on Saturday, October 14, a team of Zip Xpress employees, family and friends will head to the John Ball Zoo with hundreds of other participants to turn our steps into wishes by raising money and awareness for Make A Wish Michigan. Neither rain, nor sleet, nor snow will keep us from taking that walk for our community’s young people.

The Make A Wish Foundation provides life-changing wishes for children in West Michigan who are facing serious illnesses. These wishes are as diverse as the children that receive them. Wishes can include anything from family vacations, a new puppy, meeting a celebrity or even being transformed into a fireman for a day. There is, in fact, medical data that shows wishes can promote healing by providing a positive mental state with a distraction from the procedure and the courage to pursue a dream.

Today, it is OUR wish that you will join us with your support and consider making a contribution to our team. Over the past 10 years, Zip Xpress – together with our business partners, customers, employees, and friends – have raised over $100,000 to make wishes come true. We hope you will provide your support this year by helping us to continue grant wishes.

There are so many ways you can make a donation. You can simply mail a check payable to Make A Wish Michigan to our office (include Attention: Make A Wish). You can go online to our team page and make an online donation.

By the way – Zip Xpress will MATCH every donation and pledge received from our team, so whatever you can give, double that will go to the kids. Thank you for your support. Giving back to our community is a core belief of Zip Xpress, and we are blessed to share that spirit with you.

With many thanks,


Big Welcome to New Team Member: Sales Expert Adam Pickworth Brings Passion for Customer Service & Sustainability

Some people seem like they were manufactured for a single purpose. Adam Pickworth is one of those people. His purpose?

Providing his customers with the best customer service in the LTL shipping industry.

On the surface, it is a simple goal. But when you are the new Director of Sales & Marketing at Zip Xpress, your goal suddenly becomes more complex.

You see, Zip Xpress is not merely an experienced LTL carrier that cares about its customers. Zip Xpress has built its entire company around the promise of outstanding customer service.

Read More

sustainable trucking

A good carrier is a green carrier. Here’s how we live up to that.

The trucking industry is currently dominated by antiquated methods and wasteful practices.

We collected data from two of our clients to illustrate just how much is being wasted with outdated standard shipping.

Without innovative shipping methods from Zip Xpress, the amount of waste both companies would generate is comparable to following every full truck between the two companies with a completely empty truck. This needs to change.

This needs to change.

Zip Xpress coordinates load size, destination, and delivery schedule between companies to combine shipments and reduce waste. By utilizing Zip Xpress for their shipping, these companies eliminate that empty truck, and can potentially cut their impact in half, while keeping each load completely secure and on time. While business gets bigger and more complex, we need to be working toward smarter and more sustainable practices. With Zip Xpress, you can start today shipping better, smarter, together.

By utilizing Zip Xpress for their shipping, these companies eliminate that empty truck, and can potentially cut their impact in half, while keeping each load completely secure and on time. While business gets bigger and more complex, we need to be working toward smarter and more sustainable practices. With Zip Xpress, you can start today shipping better, smarter, together.

While business gets bigger and more complex, we need to be working toward smarter and more sustainable practices.

With Zip Xpress, you can start today shipping better, smarter, together.

See the full infographic here >