According to some experts, the trucking industry is short of about 900,000 drivers.
If you start a trucking business, you will be able to fill this unmet demand and make a decent profit at the same time. Yet, if you know nothing about business, you probably have no idea how you can start a company in this niche.
Here’s a quick look at how you can start a thriving business within the trucking industry. If you keep reading, you’ll know how to turn a profit in this growing market.
Do You Know How the Trucking Industry Works?
If you’re going to start a trucking company, you need to consider how much you actually know about the trucking industry.
After all, if your knowledge is limited, you might fail when you start your business. That’s because you may not understand the basics of the trucking industry, and what defines a successful business in this niche.
Thus, you should consider how you can get some experience within the trucking industry before you launch your company.
One option is to get a job within this industry, and this approach works well for most people.
When looking for jobs, it’s a good idea to look for managerial roles. These roles will give you a good overview of the business, and you’ll learn how each department works.
You might also want to work in a sales role to learn how you can win and manage clients. This skill will be especially helpful when you launch your business as you won’t have a company unless you know how to win clients.
It’s hard to say how much experience counts as enough, as this is often down to you. However, it’s fair to say that after 12 months or so, you should have a decent understanding of the industry.
Calculate Your Startup Costs
Once you have some experience, you can then think about setting up your own business. When you get to this stage, one of the first things you’ll need to think about is how much everything will cost you.
Now, the amount of startup capital you’ll need comes down to many different factors.
An example of this is the kind of trucking you’re going to be doing.
For instance, if you’re going to be shipping food, you’ll need trucks with a built-in refrigerator. These trucks generally cost more than the standard trucks that don’t have this functionality.
Another thing you’ll need to think about is the kind of distances you’re going to cover.
For instance, you can ship items across states, or within your own state. If you’re going to transport items across states, you’ll need to spend a lot more money on fuel.
You also want to think about whether or not you’re going to hire staff.
If you’re going to drive the trucks yourself, you won’t need to hire any other truckers. Yet, if you’re just going to be overseeing the operation, you’ll need to fork out a lot of money on drivers.
Note that even if you’re going to be the one who’s driving, you may still want to hire an administrative staff member. This person can help you manage the paperwork associated with your business. They will also deal with clients while you’re out on the road.
Juggling all these costs in your head is going to be difficult, and so you should note them down in a spreadsheet.
Getting Some Financing
It’s fair to say that starting a trucking business can be an expensive task. As a result, there’s a good chance you’ll need some financing to get your dream off the ground.
When you’re looking to get financing, you can approach individual investors or banks. However, no matter who you contact, everyone will want to see a business plan before they hand over any money.
Thus, before you speak to anyone, you should create a business plan that highlights your costs and how you will earn a profit. In this business plan, you should also explain how you’ll overcome the competition, and how long it’ll take to repay the financing.
Getting financing for a business is difficult, and you’ll probably experience a lot of rejection.
Unfortunately, there is nothing you can do about this, and you will just need to keep on moving forward. However, in some cases, a particular individual or institution will give you some insight into why they rejected you.
If you use this knowledge to improve your pitch, you might do a better job the next time you approach a potential investor.
Take Care of the Boring Stuff
If you land some financing, you might be ready to take on clients. However, before you do that, you need to take care of a few ‘boring’ tasks.
For example, you need to get the proper licenses, because if you don’t do this, you might run into some legal trouble.
The kinds of licenses you need will vary depending on where you want to do business. Thus, you need to speak to your local state government to find out what you will need.
It’s also a good idea to get some truck insurance in case your business is affected by an unexpected negative event. Luckily many insurers sell policies specifically for trucking companies. If you buy this kind of cover, you will often have sufficient protection.
Time to Start a Trucking Business?
Starting a trucking business is a great idea if you want to join a huge industry that is still growing at a fast rate.
If you want to be successful in this industry, you should try to focus on a specific niche. If you can do that, you will become a specialist, and this will make it easier for you to win clients.
Winning your first client is probably the hardest part of this process. However, once you win that first client, you will be able to get a testimonial from them, and you can use this to win other clients.
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