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Best tools for building dedicated lanes for carriers

Dedicated freight lanes are crucial for carriers to drive growth, maximize profitability, and build shipper relationships, but identifying and securing consistent lanes requires the right technology. By analyzing vast data on traffic patterns, rates, volumes, and more, today’s software provides actionable intelligence to optimize carrier route networks. 

This article explores the top platforms providing sophisticated lane modeling, forecasting tools, capacity matching, and other capabilities to help carriers implement winning lane dedication strategies. With the right solutions, they can gain real competitive advantages through building high-density, revenue-generating dedicated lanes for carriers..

And when you’re finished reading, check out the other articles in our ‘Semi truck freight lanes’ series:

Quicklook: Top tools for building dedicated lanes for carriers

  • Best for customized lane development: Intellitrux
  • Best for in-depth freight market insights and real-time decision making: SONAR
  • Best for discovering profitable lanes: Rose Rocket
  • Best for integrated load board functionality: Truckstop
  • Best for TMS-based lane solutions: Trimble

5 best truck lane development technologies

Intellitrux

IntelliTrux leverages robust freight industry data and proprietary algorithms to provide trucking industry businesses with tailored lane recommendations that maximize their specific profitability metrics. Unlike generic lane analysis software, IntelliTrux offers custom dedicated lane optimization insights based on each company’s unique operating authorities, freight rate and cost structures, driver networks, and customer relationships. With flexible deployment options, IntelliTrux goes beyond just freight pricing technology to offer personalized ongoing lane management services that adapt to ever-changing business needs.

Best for: Customized lane development

Special features

  • Uses AI and machine learning algorithms to analyze trucking market data
  • Ingests and evaluates historical carrier rate data
  • Assesses trucking freight rates, volumes, equipment lanes, driver networks
  • Integrations with transportation management systems (TMS)
  • Freight shipping lane optimization recommendations and modeling
  • Online dashboard
  • Scenario planning for different transportation corridors
  • Scheduling tools

Benefits

  • Increases revenue per mile through better truck lane planning
  • Reduces empty miles and backhaul costs
  • Maximizes use of owned assets and carrier authorities
  • Improves driver satisfaction through better route planning
  • Identifies the best shipping lanes based on operating factors
  • Adapts as carrier business evolves over time
  • Provides data to assist decision making
  • Strengthens customer relationships through lane dedication

Disadvantages

  • Requires significant freight lane analysis and data for maximum effectiveness
  • Requires manual integration with some dispatch/planning systems

Pricing: Contact for custom quote

SONAR

sonar

SONAR offers users the newest, most up-to-date freight data, collected at the point of booking, to provide the clearest insight into the freight market. The platforms aggregates market information from numerous freight data sources including:

  • Electronic tenders
  • Transportation management systems
  • Electronic logging devices
  • Fuel purchasing systems
  • Bills of lading data
  • U.S. Customs and Border Protection
  • Telematics

SONAR equips users with actionable insights to make data-informed decisions despite market volatility, and provides advanced perspectives on where the physical economy is going, often weeks or months before other data sources.

Best for: In-depth freight market insights

Special features

  • Massive freight data platform
  • Lane Discovery tool for optimized truck lanes
  • Market forecasting and capacity modeling
  • Visualization of truck rate trends and spot rate volatility
  • API access and integration capabilities

Benefits

  • Identifies best freight lanes for revenue and efficiency
  • Provides real-time market transparency
  • Enables data-driven decision making
  • Provides real-time/near-time freight market rates and capacity conditions
  • Helps reduce lane risk and truck spot market volatility
  • Improves carrier operational performance

Disadvantages

  • Very extensive data can be overwhelming
  • Requires training and expertise to maximize value

Pricing: Dependent upon features and number of seats required

Rose Rocket’s Platform stands out as the best solution for uncovering profitable trucking lanes. It harnesses the power of historical lane data algorithms and sophisticated business insight tools, to offer unique insights tailored to maximize profitability.

Rose Rocket

Rose Rocket’s Platform stands out as the best solution for uncovering profitable trucking lanes. It harnesses the power of historical lane data algorithms and sophisticated business insight tools, to offer unique insights tailored to maximize profitability.

Best For: Discovering profitable lanes

Special Features:

  • Historical lane data algorithms
  • Dwell time reporting
  • BI tools for evaluating profitable regions/customers
  • Uses AI and machine learning algorithms to analyze trucking market data
  • Ingests and evaluates historical carrier rate data
  • Assesses trucking freight rates, volumes, equipment lanes, driver networks
  • Full trucking & logistics platform suite

Benefits

  • Increases revenue per mile through better truck lane planning
  • Reduces empty miles and backhaul costs
  • Real time margin insights
  • Improves lane utilization and carrier network optimization

Disadvantages

  • Requires training for full value realization
  • Requires extensive data to ensure algorithms are trained well

Pricing: Try it for free here

Truckstop

truckstop

With its load board and lane analysis tools in a single platform, Truckstop enables carriers to identify and secure optimized freight traffic lanes seamlessly within their load search workflow. By including truck rate data and consistency metrics directly in load offers, Truckstop integrates lane intelligence directly into the load evaluation process rather than requiring separate analysis. Truckstop’s unified load board and lane analysis tools allow companies to combine lane development strategy with informed load selection and execution.

Best for: Integrated load board functionality

Special features

  • Integrated load board and lane analysis
  • Lane rate data and consistency metrics on load offers
  • Search filtering by lane density and other factors
  • Truckload rate forecasting and market analysis tools
  • Negotiation assistance for custom freight lane rates

Benefits

  • Identify optimized lanes in trucking within normal workflow
  • No jumping between systems for execution
  • Load decision making incorporates lane factors
  • Negotiate ideal truckload rates for dedicated lanes
  • Improve lane bidding strategies and planning

Disadvantages

  • Trucking report data limited to Truckstop’s load board
  • Less robust analytics compared to standalone tools
  • Limited route optimization and modeling capabilities
  • Doesn’t consider as many variables as dedicated lane software

Pricing

  • Load board access starts at $99/month
  • Additional fees for premium lane analysis features

Trimble

Trimble

Trimble’s transportation management systems use robust routing tools and data to optimize carrier lane networks, recommending lanes based on historical traffic patterns, volumes, and rates. Trimble provides lane modeling capabilities to forecast potential revenue on candidate lanes, while monitoring key lane performance indicators to ensure optimal continuous utilization. By generating data-driven lane insights within an integrated load planning workflow, Trimble enables carriers to identify and secure the best dedicated freight opportunities.

Best for: TMS-based lane solutions

Special features

  • Lane modeling and ‘what-if’ analysis
  • Lane rating tools and benchmarking
  • Historical lane cost and profitability data
  • Real-time lane performance monitoring
  • Carrier preference-based lane recommendations
  • Integrated load planning and execution

Benefits

  • Identifies most profitable lane opportunities
  • Quantifies potential revenue of candidate lanes
  • Improves lane utilization and carrier network optimization
  • Provides data to negotiate dedicated lane rates
  • Enables informed lane decisions

Disadvantages

  • Requires large amounts of accurate carrier data
  • Manual integration with some legacy systems

Pricing: Contact for a custom quote

Key strategies for maximizing freight trucking rates

The first key strategy is to thoroughly analyze lane rate data and identify opportunities where rates tend to trend higher. Leveraging load boards, rate data tools, and lane optimization software, truck drivers can gain insights into lanes and markets that typically produce loads with above average freight prices. Focusing efforts on higher-rate lanes rather than just chasing any loads can boost overall revenue.

Secondly, drivers should consider looking within the highest-paying freight lanes that match their operating strengths. For example, hauling loads like machinery, construction materials, or refrigerated loads often pay premium rates compared to general dry van freight rates. Specializing in subsectors with higher rates can boost income.

Lastly, freight businesses can focus on building direct relationships with shippers through contracts and dedicated lanes, cutting out freight brokers. Establishing consistent lanes via direct shipper relationships provides more control over trucking prices and the potential to negotiate higher rates, rather than just accepting broker load board offers which compress rates.

Start developing your own dedicated truck lanes today

While developing an optimal dedicated lane network requires complex data analysis, the right technology tools make the process easy. Leveraging purpose-built lane optimization platforms, robust transportation management systems, and load boards with integrated lane insights allows carriers to maximize revenue opportunities. By using one of the tools covered in this article, carriers can build density on high-performing freight lanes that meet their specific business goals.

FAQ

What is a dedicated lane in trucking?

A dedicated lane in trucking refers to a specific route regularly run by a carrier between two points, often with the same shipper and receiver. This arrangement provides consistency in routes and schedules, making operations more predictable and efficient for both carriers and shippers.

What are the benefits of dedicated freight?

Dedicated freight offers several benefits, including reliable and consistent scheduling, improved service quality due to knowledge of specific routes, and potentially lower costs due to reduced empty miles and better asset utilization.

How do carriers find direct shippers?

Carriers find direct shippers through various methods, including networking within the industry, using online load boards, freight marketplaces, and digital freight matching platforms. Additionally, carriers often establish relationships through direct marketing and industry events.

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Intelligent Dispatch

Unity-Dispatch specializes in creating custom lanes and building strong industry relationships. Our team will design lanes that fit your business needs and find freight within those lanes. Experience the benefits of 'Intelligent Dispatching'—we help you truck smarter, not harder.