Just like with carriers there are different types of brokers. These brokers have varying services that they offer. Brokers didn't always have the ability to differentiate themselves from each other much.
- LTL Freight Brokers: find services that carry multiple types of shipments, or those that specialize in only LTL (Less-than-Truckload) or small shipments.
- Agents: Some freight brokers begin their careers as agents rather than actual brokers. Freight broker agents are independent contractors who work as representatives of a broker under the broker’s Motor Carrier authority.
- Asset based Broker: owns and operates their own equipment (trucks). They are working to find freight to cover their assets. Any freight they receive is typically routed in the way that best suits the provider's needs in order to get their truck where it needs to be. Asset based providers can offer slightly lower rates by directly providing the equipment, they can be limited by fleet size, equipment type, or lanes.
- A non-asset based Broker: does not own their own equipment but serves as a third party (or broker) to arrange the transportation of your freight. Typically a non-asset based provider has a large database of carrier contacts all across the country, offering a more flexible and efficient solution than a pre-routed provider.