SeaRates: Streamlining global shipping with Google Maps Platform

About SeaRates

SeaRates is a global shipping, logistics, and freight delivery company with more than 15 offices worldwide. For more than 10 years, SeaRates has been offering a trusted online platform for businesses and individuals to plan, book, and track shipments anywhere in the world.

Industries: Other
Location: Ukraine

SeaRates offers a unified cargo shipping platform enabled by Google Maps Platform that lets users plan, book, and track shipments around the world.

Google Maps Platform results

  • Allows customers to select point-to-point shipping routes via road, air, rail, and sea from a single platform
  • Reduces address entry errors for shipping locations with the Places autocomplete feature which recognizes and suggests locations worldwide
  • Gives customers access to real-time cargo tracking at each step of the shipping process via a dynamic map

Extends mapping to shipping industry for the first time

From South American coffee to North African rugs, to keep the global marketplace moving, businesses all over the world need a fast, reliable, and affordable way to get their products from point A to point B. SeaRates provides shippers a simple online platform where they can visualize and book available shipping routes anywhere in the world. Thanks to a global network of logistics partners, this also includes freight forwarding and last-mile delivery from sea ports directly to local addresses. Since 2007, SeaRates has stood out from the competition by using Google Maps to give customers a simple and familiar way to visualize shipping options and track cargo.

Before SeaRates, global shippers didn’t have a simple way to book and ship cargo. They had to research, price, and book each leg of a shipment separately and didn’t have an easy way to compare shipping methods, times, and costs. Tracking cargo was especially difficult, as each logistics company has a different system and does not hand off tracking information from one shipper to the next. SeaRates has completely digitized this process, unifying the shipping process.

Extending Google Maps Platform functionality to the shipping industry

“Google Maps Platform allows us to offer autocomplete for every possible location someone might want to ship from, no matter what language they’re using. Places API ensures that mistakes do not happen, even if the customer input is incorrect.”

Alexei Shatunov, Chief of Business Development, SeaRates

Now, SeaRates customers can easily book cargo shipping to and from any place in the world in a single transaction with Logistics Explorer. Thanks to Google Maps Platform, no matter how far away from a sea port a shipment of cargo originates, or how far away from one it’s headed, SeaRates users can map, price, and book their shipments. The SeaRates platform finds the best combination of shipping times and pricing for each leg of a shipment, whether it be via road, air, rail, or sea. Most importantly for shippers, unified logistics enable them to easily track their cargo in real time.

“SeaRates expands Google Maps Platform functionality from travel and tourism to the trillion-dollar logistics industry. We see a strong synergy between SeaRates and Google Maps Platform with tremendous potential for further development in this market.”

Stefan Rogovskiy, Chief Operating Officer, SeaRates

On top of that, using Google Maps Platform autocomplete functionality helps shippers to search for the most accurate address more efficiently, regardless of whether they know exactly how to spell it or even understand the local alphabet. “Google Maps Platform allows us to offer autocomplete for every possible location someone might want to ship from, no matter what language they’re using,” explains Alexei Shatunov, Chief of Business Development at SeaRates. “Places API ensures that mistakes don’t happen, even if the customer input is incorrect.”

Stefan Rogovskiy, Chief Operating Officer at SeaRates, explains that Google Maps Platform helps a range of SeaRates customers, from individuals to large enterprises. For example, for an inexperienced user looking to ship a car from Germany to the United States, researching complicated shipping options could easily prove overwhelming. But with SeaRates, whether they enter “München” or “Munich,” the platform automatically finds the closest departure point. On the other side, even if the only information the customer has about the final destination is just “Chicago,” for instance, an exact address to pick up the car is shown on a map. Transportation is arranged by SeaRates and the customer can track the car’s journey in real time on the SeaRates solution via the map. With such detailed information available, the customer can arrange flights and then just pick up the car at the location.

“SeaRates expands Google Maps Platform functionality from travel and tourism to the trillion-dollar logistics industry,” says Stefan. “We see a strong synergy between SeaRates and Google Maps Platform with tremendous potential for further development in this market.”

Winning over shipping customers with simplified route planning

“Being able to book cargo shipping as easily as if it were an airline ticket is transformative for our customers. Our route planning and tracking features are only made possible by Google Maps Platform APIs.”

Sergey Dzhashytov, CEO, SeaRates

SeaRates business customers who ship large volumes of cargo can use SeaRates to calculate freight costs across shipping methods. Whether it’s from city to city, door to door, or port to port, customers can get pricing directly from partner logistics providers anywhere in the world. Being able to see costs transparently makes the shipping experience as simple as booking a holiday.

“Being able to book cargo shipping as easily as if it were an airline ticket is transformative for our customers,” says Sergey Dzhashytov, CEO at SeaRates. “Our route planning and tracking features are only made possible by Google Maps Platform APIs.”

Beating the competition with Google Maps Platform features

After 10 years of experience using Google Maps Platform, SeaRates continues to be pleased with the convenience and efficiency it offers. Stefan especially appreciates the quantity and clarity of documentation along with concrete implementation examples. The Google Maps Platform core APIs for Routes, Places, and Maps have helped SeaRates to meet its product development goals at every step. The addition of the Geocoding API to its solution enables SeaRates to better serve the 25% of its customers who are large enterprise shippers. These users need to track multiple containers to multiple destinations. This is especially important as SeaRates faces increasing challenges from international shipping giants who are building their own online platforms. With almost 300,000 Geocoding API calls per month, SeaRates is holding its own in a very competitive market.

SeaRates’ solution has consistently received between 15,000–20,000 unique site visits per day over the last several years, which is a point of pride for SeaRates and one of the reasons they chose to work with Google. Through its partnerships with independent freight forwarders who use the SeaRates platform, the company is able to provide a high level of service to all customers.

Partners are able to view a dashboard that allows them to manage rates, services, and support to their customers. Being able to offer last-mile delivery to any address is something that shipping and freight forwarding partners would never be able to do on their own, but that is made possible with SeaRates and the accuracy of the location data provided through Google Maps Platform.

Stefan explains that the logistics business is still very traditional, with personal negotiations between freight forwarders and shippers being the norm. SeaRates has been able to gain trust and win business by consistently offering a superior customer experience. Making cargo shipping easier with Google Maps Platform points towards continued success in the global marketplace.

SeaRates office

About SeaRates

SeaRates is a global shipping, logistics, and freight delivery company with more than 15 offices worldwide. For more than 10 years, SeaRates has been offering a trusted online platform for businesses and individuals to plan, book, and track shipments anywhere in the world.

Industries: Other
Location: Ukraine