How Can You Grow Your Trucking Business?
Statistics show us that fleets transport about 70 percent of all freight in the U.S, which is over $700 billion in exported goods every year!
If you own a small trucking business, you know better than anyone how difficult competing with larger fleets can be! Many truckers get into the business every year only to see unprofitable rates and eventually give up.
To help you, we’ve created this cheat sheet on what you can do today to start or grow your trucking company!
Find new clients
First things first - a trucking company cannot grow without customers. We recommend beginning by building a trusted network of sources and working with a variety of shippers instead of relying on a single client.
One way to do this is by visiting the local manufacturers in your region to present your fleet business as the solution to their transportation needs. This is where you can pick and choose the most profitable clients to remain on your list as you build steady relationships.
Oftentimes, client relationships are overlooked. Try not to make this mistake. Once you’ve learned how to maintain strong relationships with industry clients, you’re also guaranteeing quality referrals.
Determine your operating costs
Before saving money, you need to know what you’re spending. Determining operating costs is essential! Here a few expenses to be aware of:
- Fixed costs: truck payments, permits, insurance, etc.
- Variable costs: fuel
You can then use these expenses to calculate your “all-in-cost per mile” to figure out how much profit you will make.
Retain your truck drivers
Driver turnover directly affects your business.
It’s proven that companies that prioritize direct communication with their drivers inevitably see better satisfaction rates and lower turnovers. According to the American Trucking Association, the demand for drivers has reached an all-time high with nearly 40,000 available positions. Given that trucking companies are struggling to grow the trucking workforce within a competitive job environment, keeping current drivers happy is the key to driver retention.
Read more tips on keeping your drivers happy here. [insert link].
Maximize fuel savings
Fuel is the highest expense for any trucking operation, so knowing the ins and outs of pump prices, taxes, and even discounted fuel cards will really help your business save money. Keep in mind that regular drivers and truck drivers are taxed differently. Truck drivers get taxed on the amount of fuel used on their routes in accordance with particular states.
Make sure to regularly review your fuel purchasing methods and pursue the right strategies for your company.
Fuel cards can offer per-gallon discounts every time you fill up your tank and can also give you solid control over other fleet purchases. Useful information is the gateway to any successful fleet management and this article will tell you how you can maximize fuel savings.
Fulfill legal requirements and anticipate regulations
Owner-operators have to fulfill a number of legal requirements by the FMCSA or the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration before starting their business. A well-run office is important to a well-run business!
Aside from paperwork, trucking companies and drivers should be aware of new regulations such as increased training, environmental regulations, and electronic logging devices.
Stabilize your cash flow
Some clients take up to 30 to 60 business days to pay after your services have been delivered, seriously weakening a company’s growth. A useful solution to this issue is factoring.
Factoring companies like InstaPay ensure you get paid the same day you deliver your load. InstaPay is transparent with its clients, so you can read our Terms of Service here. If you’re ready to start getting paid on the same day, apply now!
Growing a business can be hard but following these guidelines will help take your trucking business to the next level. Good luck!