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How to start a courier service business

Julianne Leybag
06 June 2018 3 minute readShare
Courier, delivery, box

What are the things that a business owner needs to consider and account for to make sure that their new courier service business grows and thrives? Read on below to learn more about how to start a courier service business.

Designing and developing the right on-demand service model for a new courier service company can be daunting, demanding, and challenging to plan, build, and operate.

Consider the following steps:

  • Start with a business plan
  • Develop a cash flow projection
  • Understand and define the brand of service
  • Determine needed vehicle(s)
  • Prepare/acquire the right items/equipment
  • If needed, look for additional financing
  • Hire the right people
  • Invest in good marketing
  • Business set up

Start with a business plan

Understanding the courier service industry.

Take into account the cost of the new courier service business: as with any newly built company or business venture, the first few year(s) will give the lowest level of income. Effectively work out finances so business goals do not affect private living costs and other necessary personal expenses.

Develop a cash flow projection

Clearly crafting a specific and realistic cash flow projection on and for the new courier service business helps to efficiently and conveniently manage finances and prepare for possible future eventualities that might pose risks.

Consult with and engage the services of a trusted accountant with a proven expertise on cash flows particularly for new businesses or start-ups to help craft a sound and pragmatic cash flow projection for the courier service venture.

Understand and define your brand of service

Define your brand. What sets it apart from other courier service providers? Competition is real:  the on-demand courier service market is especially known for having a very competitive atmosphere.

Find out what makes the service different to build and design a solid branding image and business identity. Understand the needs and preferences of the market and target customers by doing market research,

Determine which vehicle(s) you will need

Business owners need good and reliable vehicles for the new courier service company. Whether the business will provide delivery services by bike, car, ute, or other vehicles, make sure to select the most reliable transportation units.

Many reputable courier service companies opt for cargo vans that allow for large cargo spaces.

Look into the latest reviews online on the most trusted vehicle models and brands in the courier service industry.

Prepare/acquire the right items/equipment

Purchase and acquire the right equipment that increases the efficiency of operations.

Computers, printers, and copiers, as well as business cards, brochures and flyers, pick-up and delivery log, mailing envelopes, and shipping boxes are important equipment and items needed in the courier office. Select the right supplier(s) for these items.

If needed, look for additional financing

Do not hesitate to consider all options if additional funding is needed. Financial institutions such as banks offer great loan arrangements for start-ups. Look for business partners and investors who will bring financial strength and real value to the services offered.

Decide on which business structure to follow: a sole trader, with a partner or partners, or as a start-up company? Define future company objectives and goals.

There are benefits to setting up a courier business as a company, given that a company structure limits liability in case of debt or any other unwanted business eventualities.

Hire the right people

Hiring the right people and bringing relevant talents, skills, and expertise will help the business grow, thrive, and become ahead of the competition.

Don’t hold onto employees who repeatedly demonstrate low performance. Establishing an effective human resource (HR) and hiring department to be clear about the skills, talents, and expertise the business is looking for that is specific to each role and job description.

Invest in good marketing

Have a marketing plan. Engage in a marketing strategy that attracts new customers, grows market base, and strengthens the brand.

A sound marketing strategy understands the needs of the target market and how best to address those needs in the most speedy and convenient way for customers.

Have a website. Establish online and social media presence that directs site traffic back to the company website, where customers would know more about the business and its services. Social media presence also helps a lot in furthering the business’ reach and attracting new clients.

Know where the target market is concentrated and establish a presence on that social media platform.

Set up your business

Set up and commence business operations by choosing a perfect location for the headquarters/service centre. Have all the equipment and vehicles, and the right staff and people to help with business operations. Business owners will also need to apply for a business licence for their new company.

Learn from mistakes and build a courier service company that understands the needs and preferences of its clients. Customise and continuously develop a diversified array of services offered by the courier business. Preparing for customer needs and demands by aptly streamlining services to meet their demands.

Doing these will no doubt keep business owners on top and put them ahead of the competition.

How to start a courier service business
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Julianne Leybag

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