Starting a trucking business is a great business since it is in demand. I have been thinking for some time now. Regardless if you are an entrepreneur or a truck driver, starting a trucking business must have caught your imagination also. As it stands, the trucking industry is one of the biggest businesses in the world. Hauling business and even logistics is a billion dollar business with an insatiable market. This is because transporting goods across long distances has become an important industry. No matter the industry you find yourself, you must transport bulk goods to and fro (both raw and finished goods). That makes the haulage industry a very lucrative one.
How to Start a Trucking Business Plan (Hauling and Logistics)
Now if you are interested in knowing how to start a trucking business; you have come to the right place because I will be sharing some tips to help you succeed in this field. Your journey to starting a trucking business begins here.
1.Choose a niche
The trucking industry is very broad and to succeed in it, you must select a niche. Will you be engaged in transporting bulk goods or would you be leasing trucks to businesses in the transport industry? Will you outsource your truck to a trucking company or would you rather put your truck on a hired purchase?
Are you going to haul short or long distance? If you are to go into transportation; will you haul solid or liquid goods? These are the questions you must answer before setting out to start your own trucking business. In this article, I will focus on how to start a trucking business with respect to the transport industry; haulage to be precise.
The next thing you will need to begin your journey in the trucking industry is capital and you are going to need lots of it. Trucking is capital intensive and arguably the bloodiest part of starting a trucking business. Your start-up capital will largely depend on the size of the fleet you are intending to own. Are you going to buy new trucks or used trucks? There are two ways with which you can get your trucks; you can either purchase them outright or get them on lease. Another option is to look for subcontractors. While the initial investment is quite huge, you can easily get it back if you make the right management decisions.
3.Rules, regulations and insurance
Rules and regulations is the second point you must consider when starting a trucking business. There are different licenses and permits that must be filled up, which includes state registration and permits. To know what rules you’ll have to comply with, it is greatly recommended that you do your research or ask for help from someone familiar with the rules. Another important factor you must consider before starting a haulage business is insurance; which will cover the truck and the goods being transported.
4.Your management strategy
The fourth factor to look into when starting a trucking business is your management strategy to handling payload and clients. A good management team is very essential to running a successful trucking company. Your management team must be experienced in the transport industry; especially with truck management. Another important aspect of running a trucking business is your accounting process. You can buy an accounting software your business to make things easier.
5.Your services to client
What types of goods are you planning to transport? Will you haul solid, liquid or gaseous substance? Are you going to haul durable goods or perishable goods? Each type of freight has their set of requirements, so it would be best that you decide on this before you even open shop. The types of cargo you will be able to carry will determine the type of clients you will work with. And speaking of clients, you’ll need to present yourself well to get the hauling contracts you need.
No matter how big or small your business is; your outlook matters, so don’t neglect working on image and brand. Present your services, the cost of providing the services, and other added advantages or benefits that you think can make them sign up with you. Once you get the contract, give them quality service so that they’ll be enticed to keep coming back.
Challenges of starting a trucking business
Aside the issue of capital, the trucking business is management intensive. Another challenge militating against the success of trucking businesses is bad roads. The issue of bad roads results to unnecessary repairs, maintenance and accidents/hazards. The last but not the least challenge of starting a trucking business is getting good drivers. The “face” of your company is highly dependent on the type of drivers you employ, so make sure your hire drivers that are fit for the job. Check their references and background; and make sure that they’re not taking any illegal drugs. Hiring a terrible driver or being involved in an accident is going to be a disaster; not only to the finances of your company but also to your brand image, so recruit wisely.
As a final note, this is all the advice I can provide for now on how to start a trucking business. The trucking industry is quite a tough terrain to break into but the reward is worth it.
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