How to Track My Freight Shipment

Modern Tracking Tools and Technologies

Semi truck dry van trailer sending strong GPS signal

In the ever-evolving landscape of freight logistics, knowing the exact whereabouts of your shipment from point A to point B is no longer a luxury—it's a necessity. Modern technology offers a plethora of solutions for tracking freight shipments, each with its nuances and benefits. This article covers some of the mechanisms behind truckload tracking, including driver self-reporting, in-cab GPS tracking, and tools like MacroPoint, shedding light on how shippers can stay informed every step of the way.

LTL Tracking

LTL Tracking with FreightSideKick.com offers a tailored approach, as each LTL provider has its own unique tracking system. When booking an LTL shipment through us, we ensure you get a direct link for tracking your shipment specific to the selected LTL carrier. For those requiring a more integrated view, we can craft custom tracking pages specifically for your business, aggregating data into a single tracking console for convenience and efficiency. This bespoke service ensures that, regardless of the carrier, you have seamless access with actionable insights on all your shipments.

Truckload Tracking

  • Driver Self-Reporting: Traditionally, tracking a freight shipment often relied on driver self-reporting. This method requires drivers to check in at predefined intervals, providing updates on their location, status, and any potential delays. Often shippers, dispatchers, and brokers will contact the driver regularly and perform a "check call". While this approach can offer real-time insights, its reliability heavily depends on the driver's punctuality and consistency in reporting. Even so, it remains a common way of keeping tabs on the shipment, and perhaps even remains the dominate method.

  • In-Cab GPS Tracking: In-cab GPS tracking has become a staple in freight logistics. This system allows for the automatic transmission of a vehicle's location directly to the fleet or shipper's tracking system. In-cab GPS provides more consistent and less labor-intensive tracking compared to driver self-reporting, offering updates in real-time without requiring manual input from the driver.

  • Third part tracking tool: There is a wide range of external tracking solutions, including MacroPoint, which FreightSideKick integrates. These systems are pivotal for entities like freight brokers, providing visibility into shipments without direct access to carrier-based GPS. By linking with the driver's smartphone, these platforms offer shippers live updates on their cargo's status, including departures, arrivals, and in-transit notifications, ensuring critical shipping information is always at their fingertips.


Choosing the Right Tracking Solution

Selecting the appropriate tracking solution depends on several factors:

  • Type of Freight: High-value or time-sensitive shipments might benefit more from advanced solutions like MacroPoint, which offer detailed tracking and alerts.

  • Budget Constraints: While advanced tracking systems offer superior data and insights, they also come with higher costs. Companies must balance their need for detailed tracking with their budget limitations.

  • Operational Scale: Larger operations with frequent, diverse shipments might require more sophisticated tracking systems to manage their logistics efficiently.


The ability to track freight shipments accurately and in real-time is crucial for operational efficiency, customer satisfaction, and competitive advantage. By understanding the nuances of different tracking methods—from traditional driver self-reporting to advanced solutions like MacroPoint—shippers can make informed decisions that best fit their specific needs. FreightSideKick.com provides services to simplify shipping, visibility, documents, and more.


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