top of page


Pool distribution is a form of shipping that is similar to Less Than Load, or LTL Shipping. With standard LTL shipping, you pay for the portion of the truck you are using. Then, the shipping company fills the remainder of the truck with stock for other companies. With pool distribution, you utilize the entire truck by combining orders rather than sharing space with other brands.

By pooling multiple shipments with a pool distribution strategy, you will drastically reduce your costs streamline your product's journey to its final destination.

What is Pool Distribution?

A pool distribution model allows you to pool multiple shipments delivered from a central distribution center to various destinations in the same region.

Pool distribution consolidates multiple shipments from a single shipper at one point of origin, usually the shipper's distribution center. Instead of directly going to the final destination, it is sent to a regional terminal called a pool point facility. Pool distribution gives your supply chain a boost reducing transportation costs compared to traditional LTL services.

new york.jpg

Ultimate Logistics Keeps Your Supply Chain Going

Pool distribution involves consolidating multiple shipments from a single shipper at one point of origin. The origin is usually the shipper's distribution center. The combined shipments are all headed to the same geographic region, with multiple delivery points within that region for individual final mile delivery.

Consolidated shipments are loaded onto a truck to make maximum usage of the space. We then ship to a pool point facility or regional distribution center instead of directly to the final destination. The pooled shipments are offloaded, scanned, and organized by where the freight is headed. We will then reload your shipments onto smaller, local delivery trucks or vans for their final mile delivery. We also check for OS&D, which stands for overages, shortages, and damage as we offload products. All discrepancies are recorded, and the customer is informed.

Pool distribution can often offer significant cost savings to traditional LTL shipping. Benefits include significantly reduced shipping times, less handling of your products, keeping them safer, and visibility to track your shipment throughout the entire journey.

A pool distribution strategy is more common on a smaller scale. However, larger companies can benefit from this shipping method. Ultimate Logistics for pool distribution is a valuable partner. We already have the systems and personnel in place, particularly for shipments that require special vehicles such as trailers with lift gates.

An experienced partner, such as Ultimate Logistics, will also have experienced personnel needed to receive deliveries that may require specialized equipment.

Retail's Secret Weapon: Pool Distribution

Pool distribution is more common than ever as a store replenishment tool and is crucial in keeping shelves stocked.

In a new world of e-commerce, most retail revenue still comes from the store level, and retailers are preparing for the impact on their supply chain from Pool Point (DC) to store. For both specialty retailers and national retailers, pool distribution, in its contemporary form, has become more relevant than ever as a store replenishment strategy—and is a critical factor in keeping the store shelves stocked.

The Speed of Next Day Parcel at THE Cost OF LTL


Pool consolidation is part of the pool distribution process at the shipping lane's beginning. With consolidation, we consolidate multiple vendor shipments onto a single truckload to a distribution center. In the past ten years, the pool distribution model has changed to where retailers share a distribution network of logistics service providers. Enabled by technology, these pool providers use a standard method to manage the flow of products from the retailer's central DCs to their receiving areas in a store's backroom.

Pooling saves time at both the beginning and the end of a shipment's journey. You can load your entire cargo into a single truck, and it only needs to be unloaded once.

The Benefits of Pool Distribution

Today's pool distribution extends far beyond faster and more cost-effective store replenishment for retailers. Some benefits include:

  • PinPoint tracking. Tracking of comingled freight is a must and needs complete visibility for the retailer and the pool operator. The retailer sends electronic advanced shipment notices (ASN) to the pool operator detailing what goods to expect at a pool point. In addition, all cartons are scanned at each touchpoint from pool receipt to staging, loading, and store receipt.

  • Minimal product losses and claims. Since technology can pick up exceptions at each point of handling in the process, retailers can reconcile issues as they happen through auditing, ensuring minimal losses and claims. Thus, the technology benefits both the retailer and the pool operator.

  • Inventory management. With complete visibility of where goods are (e.g., in transit, received at the store), and an understanding of replenishment lead times, retailers can minimize overstocking and out-of-stock products.

  • A gauge on inventory. Quick moving SKUs, peak season, sales volume, and promotional products, such as Black Friday, can all be staged at the pool operator for later delivery. Using technology, pool operators have tremendous flexibility to cater to retailers, specific inventory requirements on an as-needed basis. Our technology also helps retailers with the constraints of a store's small backroom.

  • Minimize store labor. Deliveries at a specific time on a particular day are not the norm for LTL carriers. The pool operators know how to provide detailed delivery schedules with smaller delivery windows and hit expected levels of on-time performance allows retailers to manage store labor and payroll more cost-effectively.

Contact Ultimate Logistics

Contact us today for more information. We welcome the opportunity to speak with you about your business and how we can be your single source logistics and "Pool Distribution" shipping provider.

OTHER Services









bottom of page