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Wednesday Aug 26th, 2020


The business of waiting is a business few want to be in. As such, overnight shipping has been in high demand over the years, especially in a society that expects deliverables in short order. It's a premium service to be sure, but one shippers seem increasingly willing to pay to meet or exceed customer expectations — from everything from small parcels to heavy freight.

As fulfillment time tables are compressed, overnight shipping helps relieve some of the supply chain stress. Let's learn how.

Overnight shipping vs. same-day shipping

Before we start, note the distinction between same-day shipping and same-day delivery — the first means the shipment will be on its way that same day, the other means it will arrive. Same-day shipping infers expediency, but does not promise it.

Conversely, choosing an overnight shipping option with a carrier assures your parcel or freight will be conveyed with urgency, making full use of off-peak hours toward that end. In most cases, the customer would anticipate the shipment arriving at its destination on the very next business day.

First overnight vs. priority overnight

This is where we get more specific. Many overnight shipping services are tiered according to when on the next day they arrive. Consider the difference between "first overnight" and "priority overnight." What first overnight really means is the shipment will be delivered at the absolute earliest time possible, usually at the very opening of regular business hours.

Priority overnight means the shipment is one of the carrier's priorities that morning, but not the first priority. Regardless, it definitely won't be sitting around at the distribution center all day — deliveries are typically guaranteed by mid-morning at the latest. If those first couple hours aren't essential to you, then priority overnight offers a better value.

What is dedicated freight?

Basically speaking, dedicated freight is a heavy shipment (over 150 lbs.) that gets the exclusive treatment. It does not share any cargo space with another shipper's goods — that vehicle (or combination of vehicles) is specifically tailored to your deliverables.

If you want to make up for lost time, dedicated freight is the way to go. There will be very few or no stops along the way because your cargo is the only thing onboard. Dedicated freight is commonly associated with last-mile logistics — from the distribution center to the final destination — when further delays are truly not an option.

If that's not dedication enough for you, some carriers utilize what's called a dedicated freight lane — a route they travel exclusively. Drivers love this, because it means they can stay closer to home, in a familiar area, and build relationships with customers. You love it because they know its quirks and idiosyncrasies, and stand little chance of getting misdirected or lost.

Marrying overnight shipping with dedicated freight

When you combine overnight shipping with dedicated freight services, you're only accelerating the process — there is only your freight and very little else in the way. This is exactly the kind of synergistic relationship National Logistics Network can leverage to get your most urgent shipments the singular, undivided attention they need. Do not hesitate to reach out to us for a quote; we will not hesitate to help.