Some small businesses are having a hard time in a city with high costs of living, and with the Port of Melbourne set to increase rent rates, it’s going to be more difficult trying to make ends meet. The major price hike – which would be a result of the port’s privatisation – is an estimated 800% change in the current rates.

A majority of (if not all) local exporters would be suffering a huge blow to their overheads. Some shippers might even be forced to switch to another port just to save on costs, even if they would have to sacrifice some parts of their business and resources, which puts some jobs at risk. Experts predict that the change could be severely felt by the Victorian government and its people.

If the massive price hike does pull through, businesses from any industry will have no choice but to shoulder the increased costs or pass it on to consumers. When you face the problem, you will need to devise ways to manage your budget more creatively, such as cutting back on freight services. Here are some practical tips from Melbourne logistic companies to reduce your freight costs:

Make bigger shipments.

One of the most effective ways to lower freight costs is to consolidate shipments. The bigger your packages are, the lower the basic delivery costs would be. You could ship in larger batches of orders by banding boxes together or packaging them in big containers. Adjust some parts of your delivery operations, do the math, and decide if the savings would be worth it.

Shop by dates, not by service type.

Make sure you get the most cost-effective service by checking the rates per day. This would allow your customers to receive their orders on their preferred date at lower costs. Giving them ground, second day, or next day options could be more expensive when you calculate the costs, and they could even get their order at a later day.

Keep accessorial costs and other expenses in check.

Changing addresses or correcting other information, indicating inaccurate package weights, shipping packages with irregular dimensions – these and other factors can earn you surcharges. Not using your freight service provider’s packaging may also be costing you more. Make sure you avoid the unnecessary accessorial costs and overheads.

Look for reliable transport companies with affordable rates.

Of course, you need to compare the freight service rates and guarantees. You don’t want the extra costs of losing a package or having it delivered in an unsatisfactory state to your customers. An experienced logistics company in Melbourne, such as State Transport, offers flexible freight services that can fit your budget and ensure that your shipments are professionally handled.

(Source: Rent hike of 800 per cent at Port of Melbourne will affect ‘everyone in Tasmania’, ABC, March 6, 2015)