Checklist for Starting a Delivery Business
Who doesn’t want to become their own boss, set their own working hours, and become financially independent? If you’re looking to start a business, you’ve probably tossed around some ideas.
But have you considered starting a delivery business?
The changing times fueled by the ravaging COVID-19 pandemic have caused a change in consumer buying behavior—with over 2.14 billion people expected to shop online in 2021. This move to online shopping has caused an increase in the demand for courier services.
To that end, starting a courier business can be a very profitable venture. But how do you start a courier business? Glad you asked. We’ve prepared a 10-point checklist for starting a delivery business that will be of help to you. Let’s dive in.
1. Develop a Business Plan
Like any other business, you’ll need to start with a clear business plan for your costs, pricing, and profit margins.
Your courier business plan will help you map out the specifics of your business and discover some unknowns—business name, target market, monthly goals. It can also help you secure investment for your business.
2. Secure Reliable Vehicles
Delivery vehicles are the most vital tools in a courier’s arsenal.
Before you start your own delivery business, you’ll need to determine the type of vehicles that will suit your business. If your business is only covering a certain region, like the city center, a fleet of motorbikes may be the better option.
3. Plan for Storage Space
The nature of the courier business may require you to have storage space for temporarily storing packages and parcels. It’s thus important to take storage space into account when planning for office space and location.
4. Purchase Relevant Equipment & Materials
Aside from vehicles, you’ll need additional equipment to keep your business running smoothly. For example, you may need to invest in robust delivery software to digitize your business operations. You can find software that is built specifically for small businesses, particularly as many retailers take their operations online due to Covid-19.
A good delivery management software should have stellar route monitoring features to help dispatchers track route progress—stops completed and where drivers are headed next. It should also be able to update customers on the status of their shipments with an accurate ETA.
Other tools and materials you may need to purchase include office supplies, two-way radios, mobile phones, and packaging materials like cargo straps.
5. Register Your Business
Registering your business can be a lengthy process so it’s important to prepare early. The process will involve choosing a business name, forming a legal entity, and getting permits.
6. Insure Your Business
As a business owner, it’s important to keep in mind that you’re liable for the goods you promise to deliver. Having appropriate insurance can help your company’s financial wellbeing in the event of a covered loss.
7. Determine Your Pricing Structure
Determining the perfect pricing structure for your business is critical as this will affect your bottom line. You’ll need to take everything cost-related into account—from operating costs and insurance premiums to the cost of things like fuel and shipping.
8. Get Finance
You’ll need substantial capital to secure business equipment like delivery vehicles and cover operating expenses. If you don’t have cash-at-hand, you may want to consider financing.
9. Build a Website
A strong online presence is a must-have if you want to achieve a competitive edge in a crowded market. And that starts with a business website.
Your website will allow customers to learn more about your business. It will also provide an easy way for your customers and potential leads to contact you.
10. Market Your Business
Now that you have your vehicles, equipment, business permit, and everything in place, it’s time to market your business. Start by making a list of businesses that may need a courier service and reach out. You might also want to open social media accounts for your business.
We hope this checklist for starting a delivery business will equip you with everything you need to get started and plan accordingly. Feel free to comment and share.