You can begin a courier company relatively affordably. All you need is reliable transportation and some initial accounts. You may need to purchase a larger vehicle as your volume of business increases. You will need a commercial driver’s license if your vehicle exceeds a certain weight. Strive to pick up and deliver all packages on time. Excellent customer service is what will help you expand your business.
You will work with business clients, residential customers or both. Businesses are more likely to use your services regularly, while residential customers occasionally mail packages. Focus on office complexes, small corporations, small retail outlets and auto repair places. Strive to become their regular delivery person. For example, auto repair places often need parts delivered to complete repairs. A muffler may need to be delivered to the muffler shop across town.
Small courier companies will need to decide what types of items they will pick up and deliver. This will further determine the businesses in which you target. Some couriers carry airline tickets, medical specimens and donated organs, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. You may want to limit your deliveries to envelopes and small boxes. For example, you could transport a vendor’s paycheck to his office if a company needs to pay him right away. Additionally, you may limit your box deliveries to 5 or 10 lbs. For example, a female courier may not want to lift extremely heavy items.
Most courier companies charge a flat rate plus mileage for their services. Check with competitive courier services and determine the going rate. You can then choose to be a discount service or establish yourself as a small exclusive courier for breakable items, for example. Establishing a particular niche market for your services could warrant charging higher prices.
Approach business clients in person with a business card and a brochure. Business cards and brochures are more professional than flyers. Sell business owners and managers on your service. Acquire several clients to start, particular those that will need your services daily or frequently. Provide customers with a price break as an incentive. For example, charge $10 per delivery for repeat customers instead of the usual $15 rate. Use the price break as an incentive to capture a company’s business. Also, advertise in both the print and online yellow pages, as businesses will often reference the yellow pages when looking for a courier.
Expand your business by hiring additional drivers, especially if your workload exceeds what you can personal handle. Offer drivers a commission and mileage for each delivery. The commission can be based on the price of the job. You can continue to make deliveries or split your time between deliveries and acquiring more customers. Eventually, you will need to set up a dispatch center for coordinating pickups and deliveries.
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COURIER-MESSENGER, INC. – BIG OR SMALL WE SHIP IT ALL