If you are new to trucking, the number of load boards available on the Internet can seem overwhelming. Finding affordable boards that consistently generate well-paying loads for your company may require some time and research.
You can start by becoming familiar with the five freight-matching services that dominate the crowded digital load board market. What follows are summaries on the services, pricing and accessibility of each of these load board giants.
By far the biggest and oldest truck load board provider, DAT Solutions operates three popular freight-matching platforms: DAT Power, DAT Express and DAT TruckersEdge. Earlier this year, DAT expanded its presence by merging with GetLoaded, another leading load board. Combined, the DAT boards post an average of more than 485,000 loads each business day and have a database of more than 1.3 million trucks.
DAT Power is a live load board, allowing you to view loads, trucks and transactions in real time. The board provides data on truckload rates based on actual transactions, not bids, across 65,000 lanes. DAT Power also has a payment guarantee that covers payments of up to $1,000 per load.
DAT Express is geared toward smaller brokerages and growing fleets, and allows for unlimited load searches and truck postings. The board provides alerts when new posts match your search, and suggests triangular routes that help you eliminate dead-head miles. DAT TruckersEdge provides small carriers and owner-operators with access to North America’s largest marketplace for freight loads and trucks. The board incudes average rates paid on specific lanes, as well as credit and days-to-pay data on thousands of brokers.
DAT Power, which features the most state-of-the-art freight-matching technology, starts at $149 per month. DAT Express costs $109 monthly for the broker package, and $99 for carriers. DAT TruckersEdge ranges in price from $34.95 to $49.95 per month. You can also post your trucks on TruckersEdge for free.
Commonly known as “Internet Truckstop,” this load board launched in 1995 as the first freight-matching marketplace on the web. More than 200,000 carriers, brokers and shippers use Truckstop.com to find loads.
Truckstop.com offers three tiers of load boards for trucking companies. Truckstop Pro is a live board with real-time data and search functionality for the best-paying loads. Both Truckstop Pro and the less expensive Truckstop Advanced provide credit and days-to-pay data on shippers and brokers. Finally, Truckstop.com’s Basic load board provides searching, posting and results that are updated every 60 seconds.
The Truckstop Pro package is $149 per month. The second-tier Advanced load board costs $125 per month, while Basic is just $35 per month.
The 123Loadboard platform posts more than 45 million loads each year and has over 325,000 users. Earlier this year, the load board expanded its audience by combining its online technology with trucking software company TMW Systems.
One advantage of 123Loadboard is that its Premium Plus package costs significantly less than many of the big load boards, at only $55 per month. Both the Premium Plus and Premium load boards provide a load planner, mileage and maps, and credit data on brokers and shippers. The Premium Plus load board accommodates up to three users and includes industry freight rates.
123Loadboard offers a free, 10-day trial for each of its load boards. After that period expires, the Standard load board costs $35 per month. The Premium package costs $45 per month, while Premium Plus is $55 per month.
Owned and powered by DAT Solutions, DAT MembersEdge is the official load board of the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association. The board provides OOIDA members with access to DAT’s North American marketplace for freight loads and trucks. With a free, 30-day trial and month-to-month subscriptions starting at $31.45, DAT MembersEdge is a low-cost alternative for owner-operators who are on a budget but need to cast a wide net in finding good loads. Subscribers to the Enhanced load board get broker spot market rates included in every load search.
DAT MembersEdge offers free posting. The Standard load board costs $31.45 per month, while the Enhanced package is $44.95 per month.
Since 1997, Direct Freight Services has provided online freight matching for thousands of trucking companies. Like 123Loadboard, Direct Freight also integrates its technology to that of transportation management software provider TMW Systems. Carriers or owner-operators can post loads or trucks on Direct Freight for free. A monthly subscription provides access to credit reports, weather, load filtering, route planning, saved searches, text alerts and other features. You can access load information from Direct Freight through the internet, email alerts and truck stop screens.
Direct Freight is available for a free, 15-day trial. A subscription to the load board costs $34.95 per month.