What Brokers Are Looking for in a Carrier

October 15, 2020

By
SmartHop

There are two sides to every story. For owner-operators and small carriers, it’s all about finding the most profitable loads and the best lanes. But there’s another side. Here at SmartHop, we work with brokers and have cracked the code to remove friction and provide them with the essentials they need from our carrier network. Read below to see the top three traits brokers are looking for in a carrier and how they can leverage our service platform for their needs:


1 Reliability

There is always a risk when working with people you do not know, yet the people in the trucking industry, brokers and carriers alike, have to do this all the time. Not only do you have to trust someone with your load, but you also have to trust that they will take it at a reasonable price. SmartHop takes out this element of risk by connecting a select group of trusted brokers and owner-operators. We can also accurately track your trucks to make sure that the broker always knows what the freight status is; if it’s going to be late, early, or on time. We're cutting time for both the broker and carrier ends and providing them with peace of mind.

2 Communication

Many small trucking companies are working with minimal technology—truckers often have just one cell phone to do all of their communications on the go. With SmartHop, the broker does not have to be the one always trying to get a hold of the owner-operator. SmartHop will ensure that the freight is on time and will be there to support any issues—like sending a rental out for trucks that break down during a trip. Coordination and good communication are essential for any trucking business to survive, whether you’re a broker or a carrier.

3 Capacity

Brokers are always looking for capacity, and they’re going to hire a carrier that can haul their freight consistently.  So if a carrier keeps coming back and loading with them, they’re going to favor them, and vice versa. So, building that broker-carrier relationship is critical.

However, it's hard for brokers to build that same relationship with an owner-operator who operates just a few trucks. The reason being that a small owner-operator lacks the resources needed to move the volume of freight a broker might have on a consistent and timely basis.

But if a broker calls a larger carrier with 40-50 trucks, they know there's a better chance for them to find a match for the loads they need to move that day/week. Availability is key, and the big advantage large carriers have over smaller ones.


When a small carrier or independent owner-operators signs up with SmartHop, they become a part of the SmartHop Carrier Network. With that comes the benefit of appearing “larger” than they really are. What does that mean? It means access to brokers and getting loads that only the big boys used to get. It means having extra support to ensure your trips go smoothly. And it means being backed by SmartHop’s reputation, which in the eyes of our partner brokers, guarantees a level of service and reliability they can count on. 

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