The digital revolution we have been experiencing over the last decade has changed the face of virtually any industry in existence, even if that influence has often been indirect. The best example of this development that crosses the mind is the delivery industry. With an estimated number of 1.92 billion people expected to purchase something online, the question of distributing all these items becomes a very perspective errand the ambitious entrepreneurs can easily tap into.
However, perspective doesn’t mean carefree. As always, setting your business on the right footing will require thorough preparation and a great understanding of the industry. Let’s see if we can make these issues a bit clearer.
Start with a business plan
Essentially, the business plan is a blueprint for your future business. Use an appropriate business plan template for easier business planning. It serves as a tool you’re going to use to lure in investors, it lays down your long-term goals, and it makes an excellent reference point you can use to measure your current progress. Some of the most important topics this document should address are as follows:
- Executive summary – The elevator pitch for your business
- Company description – A section that describes your company’s values and mission statement
- Market analysis – An honest look at the state of the market and your competitors
- Organizational management – The way you are going to organize your senior personnel
- Sales strategies – How are you going to raise the money and ensure stable profits
- Funding requirements – An accurate assessment of your startup costs
- Financial projections – Your developmental goals based on the sales strategies and market assessment.
Build a vehicle fleet
The vehicle fleet is the bread and butter of any delivery service. Although you should avoid pouring excessive amounts of money into it, your vehicles should still be fast, well-maintained and reliable. One of the most popular solutions to this problem lies in checking out used trucks for sale. Most of the vehicles that are currently on the market are in very good shape and pack a lot of value for the money. Also, do your best to make your fleet as diverse as possible. Until you develop your customer base, versatility will be one of your greatest assets.
Get the necessary equipment
Compared to the vehicle fleet, the equipment you will need to acquire will require only a fraction of your startup costs. Still, the devil is in the details and omitting some of these important tools may take a serious toll on the efficiency of your employees. So, do your best to be as thorough as possible. Some of the items you absolutely must own in order to successfully run a business are:
- Hand trucks
- Moving dollies
- Ratchet straps
- GPS systems
- Personal computers
Take care of the branding
Although the delivery industry offers relatively little room for diversification of services, you should find some way to set your company apart from the competitors and use that foundation to build your later branding efforts. If you have a problem finding a unique voice, go back to your mission statement and remind yourself what’s your company truly about. Alternatively, you can put an alternative angle on some of your existing services (e.g. eco-friendly delivery). Once you establish this foothold, use it to come up with a catchy name and memorable logo.
Get the papers in order
Depending on the region and the state you live in, the process of registering your company may show a lot of variation. Still, there are some general steps you must take regardless of where you live.
- Check if your company name is already registered
- If not, apply for business registration
- Open up a company bank account
- Visit the IRS representative office or website and apply for a tax number
- Take care of the insurance (general insurance, property insurance, and liability insurance)
Start marketing your business
Taking into consideration that you are starting from the ground up, there is really no wrong way to carve your company into public consciousness. However, if you want to take a more cost-effective route, social media and word-of-mouth should be your go-to channels. Both of these marketing methods can be made even more effective with the proper use of referral programs, the giveaway of promotional items, and calls to action. Also, speaking in terms of ROI, Search Engine Optimization always produces more than satisfying results.
We hope these six steps gave you a general idea of how delivery services turned from lucrative business opportunities to fully functional delivery companies. As time goes by, the demand for reliable delivery will only continue to grow. Your job is to take the initiative, seize this opportunity, and finally take the ownership over your career.