Shipping Glossary2023-02-08T17:37:24-05:00

Welcome to Last Mile Logistics

A complete shipping and logistics guide

A complete shipping and logistics guide

Tired of not understanding logistics terms?

Tired of not understanding logistics terms?

Transportation, freight, and logistics industries have many uncommon terms that sometimes are difficult to understand. We crafted this glossary with the most important terms in our industry to help you understand and use them.

GPS truck graphic

Shipping Glossary



Third-Party Logistics: A specialized outsourcing service that provides various tasks such as packaging, moving, warehousing, tracking, or delivering.


Fourth-Party Logistics: It is a complete logistics service integrator that covers all aspects of chain supply management within an organization and assembles them with the services provided by a third party to deliver an efficient logistics solution.



A carrier’s ability to provide transportation services between two determined locations.

After-Sales Services

Some services are provided to a client once their freight has been delivered. Often includes maintenance, repairs, or remote support.


Base Demand

The expected demand for a product utilizing historical records or ongoing client contracts.

Business to Business (B2B)

Companies that sell to wholesalers or other businesses instead of directly to consumers.



The available resources needed to meet the customer’s needs, including personnel, physical facilities, and processes.


Items, materials, or goods being carried. The subject of a shipment.


The party that is transporting the cargo.


A box mainly used for sea transportation, that can be loaded into a truck or a railroad car. Usually they are 10 to 40 feet long.


Demand Chain

Another name for a supply chain. It is often driven by analyzing customers’ or end-users’ data.

Direct Channel

A company’s own sales force sells to the consumer.The company may ship of utilize a third-party for handling.

Distribution Channel

Companies or individuals that participate in the logistics flow and take products from the manufacturer to the end-user.



Electronic commerce is trading goods or services using technologies or the Internet.

Expedited Shipping

A shipping method that ensures goods arrive faster than standard transit times.



Finished Goods Inventory (FGI): Manufactured, packaged, stored, and ready-for-distribution products.

Freight Carrier

A company that moves the freight by land, waterways, railroad, or air.


Full Truckload (FTL): A shipment that uses the whole space of a trailer.



Global Positioning System (GPS): A technology that uses satellites for positioning an object on earth. In logistics, it is used to track shipments.


Generally, a good can be any material used to satisfy customer demand. It is a part or the whole cargo. It also refers to movable property or merchandise.

Green Strategy

An integrative management with the goal to achieving economic and environmental sustainability.



An essential reference for a transportation network and is usually a place where many roads meet.



Global agreements that define buyers’ and sellers’ responsibilities during the trade and transportation process.


When a single shipment is moved using different methods along its transportation, such as truck, rail, water, or airway.


Intermodal Transport Unit (ITU): A container that is suitable for multiple transportation methods.



Key Performance Indicator (KPI): A metric that measures strategic operations of a company. In transportation, it might be Supplier On-time Delivery Performance.


Less Than Truckload (LTL)

A shipment that uses only part of the capacity of a trailer and might share it with other cargo.


The processes to plan, execute and control the transportation and storage of goods or materials.



A freight that includes more than one pick up or drops off to complete the delivery.



It refers to separating different products in the same warehouse using diverse trays or drawers.


Obsolete Inventory

Products for which no further demand is expected.


Depending on the state, some loads with exceeding dimensions might need special permits.



It is a platform where freight is put on and stacked. It is often made of wood, plastic, or some other materials.

Pool Distribution

Consolidating multiple shipments from several shippers at one point of origin to reduce freight costs.



It usually refers to the perception that the service provided meets the client’s expectations. Quality is a conditional, subjective, and perceptual attribute.



An individual or an organization purchases products with the intention of selling them later.

Reverse Logistics

A specialized service is required for moving a product after the sale, including returns for credit or repair.



Shared Truckload (STL): When two or more organizations consolidate their deliveries on the same truck to reduce shipping costs, this term differs from pull distribution, where the same company will ship multiple loads on one truck.

Social Responsibility

The commitment of a business with ethical behavior and to contribute to the proper development of society.


The efforts of a company to make business with social and environmental responsibility.



A dock or a hub where freight could be redistributed or sorted.


In freight transportation, it is a measure of output. It refers to the distance and weight of the shipment.


Value Added

Improved value, worth, or usefulness.


A large facility made to store and distribute items.

Service for oversized, fragile, or valuable items that require special handling, packaging, and storage.

Superior results through technology

One the greatest challenges today is sourcing capacity that fluctuates with demand in the marketplace. As an intermediary, we carefully consider the qualifications of the truck equipment operators we contract with to service our shipper clients’ needs.

LAST MILE LOGISTICS logisticians rely on their experience and use of proprietary technology to manage and move every shipment. And because shipper clients require a practical risk management approach to doing business, LAST MILE LOGISTICS is one of few brokers that has Primary Truck Broker Liability Insurance ($2 Million policy).

north american distribution locations

Find your next shipping partner, watch to learn how Last Mile Logistics can improve your business shipping logistics

Find your next shipping partner, watch to learn how Last Mile Logistics can improve your business shipping logistics

Affiliations & memberships

Affiliations & memberships

We maintain strategic partnerships with like-minded organizations that help improve safety, efficiency, and value for the customer.

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