The trucking industry is the lifeblood of the US economy. As most of the cargos are transported by trucks rather than trains, planes, or ships. It is the main source of income for many as well.
An Overall Guide to Starting Your Trucking Business
But just like any other business sector, the trucking business also went through a vast dislocation. The COVID-19 pandemic caused a major economic shock on the trucking business as well.
COVID-19 has been a roller-coaster ride for the trucking business. Many truck drivers lost their jobs. Despite these hiccups, by the end of 2020, there was a striking increase in the number of drivers applying for the Commercial Driving License (CDL).
We know what made you land here. It’s obvious to feel intimidated starting a trucking business but, don’t worry, we got you covered.
This tell-all post will help you get ahead with your trucking business and take it up to the market level.
Your Drivers Are Going to Be the Propellers
The first need of your trucking business is going to be the drivers of your trucks. Be it you or your driver, make sure that whoever is driving has a legal and valid driving license (CDL) with little experience with heavy vehicles.
Don’t overlook the different road laws for the different states. So recruit your drivers smartly and follow up the retention strategies for them.
- Maintain a good relationship with them through various platforms.
- Provide motivating feedback every time on rounding off a task.
- Provide better driving conditions for your drivers.
Plan a Business Model for Your Company
Before breaking into the market, you need to gird up for the onsets. You will need a viable business plan to grow your trucking business. And in the trucking business, planning includes:
Are you planning to acquire new trucks and hire qualified drivers, or will you hire owner-operators? If you buy all your vehicles, you need to think about the funds required during the first six months to ensure and maintain them.
Manage your expenses by using fuel-cutting strategies, providing proper routes to drivers ensuring no fuel wastage, tracking the insurance cost and budget each month.
Hire professional and experienced truck drivers to ensure a secure and hassle-free transportation system. Do a background check on every candidate.
Dealing With All the Paperwork
Make sure you follow all the stringent rules and have all the paperwork such as CDL, transportation number (USDOT), tax papers.
Apart from drivers and trucks, you need employees to manage and maintain your resources. You will also need a place to keep your vehicles when they are not on the job.
Keep these points in check, and you are ready to rock your trucking business.
How to Draw Loads to Haul?
You can get loads in various ways, pick what suits you:
Brokers can be a good option for this as they usually do most of the homework for you. They do all the negotiations with the shippers. But be aware of the latest changes that can increase your expenses. So search for an experienced broker and invest wisely.
Truckers can use public or online load boards to find loads posted there. You can choose a monthly or annual subscription plan.
There are also services like Matrack PostOnce Load Boards where you can post your requirements for a minimal fee and get paired with a perfect partner with no hidden fees.
Ads can be a great source for the growth of your trucking business. Just choose which publication can be the best fit for your trucking business.
Networking is a secret sauce to small businesses. Try to form networks with other associations and small businesses.
Heed Your Financial Structure:-
The financial status of your trucking business is going to determine the pace of its growth. Keeping a check on the unnecessary business expenses and wisely investing your money will profit you a lot.
The expenses that you can look up to in everyday go can be:-
- Keeping a check on the cost of your trucks first.
- Check on extra fuel consumption and use effective fuel-buying techniques.
Some other factors one can consider to cut on the extra spendings can be-
- Move along with the business by considering the favorable weather conditions.
- Get any of these fleet management softwares to get real-time tracking and reports of your trucks
- Maintenance of trucks will ultimately aid in cutting down the extra expenses by escaping from the repair cost.
- Proving a good route plan for drivers will ultimately save you from unnecessary spending. Follow the routes with less traffic and stations with lower fuel prices.
You can get a good fleet management solution that will do all the above-mentioned work for you, and help your trucking business grow.
According to Forbes, the future of the trucking business is going to be changed completely with the advancement in logistical software solutions including eld and fleet management devices.
Improve Your Customers’ Experience
The growth of your business ultimately depends upon your customer’s experience. If you do not fill the gap between your customers and you, somebody will. So, primarily focus on your customer’s experience rather than focusing on the product and the price.
Adapt to the changes that most of them want. Positive customer review is proven key to customer satisfaction. In the trucking business, creating loyal customers is so crucial.
Increase your engagement with your customers.
- Optimize your website.
- Engage on social media platforms.
- Having one-to-one conversations creates more loyal customers in the long run.
Take It Up a Notch by Carrying Proper Insurance
Whenever an accident happens on the road involving a heavy-duty truck, people always falsify the driver of a bigger vehicle ignoring the actual scenario. So, it will be great to bag sufficient insurance in your favor.
Getting insurance for different situations during injuries and accidents will keep you and your trucking business safe. It will provide you with cover for the same during any mishap.
Different types of cover provided by insurance:
- When damage is caused in case of accident and injury but you are responsible
- When loss or damage is done due to theft of the vehicles.
- When damage and injury are done but you are not at blame.
Make Decisions With Confidence
Don’t feel agitated to take up to new challenges that benefit your customers and your trucking business.
Businessmen who have been in the trucking business for many years, know that good times don’t last forever. There will be lean times in your trucking business too. You just need to cope up with it.
Always be ready with a backup plan so that your business keeps going. Keep looking for new opportunities even if it is a tough one.
While hiring your employees, keep in mind whom to select. The trucking business relies upon safety and security measures, so you do not hire someone with questionable judgment qualities.
- The trucking industry is always on the road. That gives you the opportunity to network, and expand your business to nearby cities and towns.
- While making a new addition to your business, ask yourself a question – Will I need it after 2 years? If yes, go ahead. Buy new resources for your business only when it is absolutely necessary.
Also, We also recommend trucking business owners to use Freight Factoring for more efficiency.
Many trucking-business owners have started it all from scratch, knowing nothing. But you now have access to all that you need with this article. Keep exploring the business from different sources, and keep growing. So what are you waiting for?
Go buy or lease your first truck. Legally establish your first trucking company. Find the right market for it. And you are ready to rock.
Some other articles you might find of interest:
Understand how you can maximize your time to grow your business:
Time Is Money And Your Most Valuable Resource. Use it Wisely to Build Your Business
Looking for effective ways to drive and increase traffic to your startup website?
SEO Traffic Guide To Boost Your Blog Rankings
Looking for effective ways to drive and increase traffic to your startup website?
3 Top Reasons Why Startups Fail and How Not to Become a Victim