You can ensure the longevity of your trucking business by making sure you keep jobs in the pipeline.
In the trucking business, miles equal money. Whether you own a truck or a fleet, you need to keep your rig or rigs moving to make money, so you’ll need to put careful thought – and work – into finding loads and contracts.
Finding work and hauling contracts is one of the most important parts of running your hauling business. However, you can manage your resources better by finding work that pays well.
For many hauling operators, this is the most challenging part of owning a trucking business.
Finding Your Ideal Customer
The best way to find the perfect clients is through local industry associations. This doesn’t mean trucking associations. In trucking organizations, you’ll only find competition.
What you need to do is find out which organizations your ideal customers have joined. These organizations offer opportunities for phenomenal growth.
As an example, imagine that you want to move retail goods. The first thing you need to do is to find a local retail organization and apply for membership.
Alternatively, you may want to haul automobiles. In this case, you need to look for organizations that represent the interests of car dealerships.
There’s an organization for almost every industry. You don’t have to focus on one kind of industry. Your ideal customers may do business in several industries.
You need to think about the kind of customer that you can best serve as well as ones that offer the most profitable opportunities. Focus your energy on landing those clients and contracts.
Some associations only allow industry-related companies to join their group. However, others allow corporate partners to join. These kinds of organizations are your ticket to finding new loads and contracts.
How to Get Loads for Trucks
Another way to find loads is to partner with a freight broker. Freight brokers serve as intermediaries between shippers, truckers and clients.
If you’re just starting in the trucking business, a freight broker may help you get started. Freight brokers work with clients that range from owner-operators to fleet owners.
They’ll do most of the work involved with finding loads to run. This work includes negotiating rates.
Brokers make it relatively easy to figure out how to find loads to haul. They already have established relationships with shipping companies.
However, their services aren’t cheap. What you save in trouble, you’ll pay in cash. Make sure to watch out for hidden fees when using the services of a broker.
Hiring In-House Talent
You can also hire an experienced dispatcher who knows how to find truck loads. Along with the new hire, you’ll also gain access to their trucking contacts.
An experienced dispatcher can also perform administrative duties for your company. This may include services such as accounting, collections and billing.
Some dispatchers have their own companies and perform work for independent drivers. Most importantly, they’ll make sure that you get paid on time.
You can also check out load boards for available work. A load board will connect you directly with clients. If possible, take advantage of any free trials to make sure that you’re not wasting your time.
You can also look into government contracting to find loads to haul. Often, government agencies will outsource their needs. This happens frequently in logistics.
Don’t limit yourself to the federal government. State and local governments need goods moved as well.
Across the United States, there’s a wealth of government agencies. However, there’s extra paperwork involved before you’re eligible to work with the government.
Alternatively, you could partner with a company that already has a government contract. Your city or state government offices can give you more information about finding work in this manner.
The Search for Hauling Contracts
Prospecting for loads is a lot of work. Nevertheless, it’s how many trucking businesses start.
In the trucking business, earning long-term money starts with research. You need to find out who’s moving goods in your area, what they’re moving and where they’re moving it.
You can find out this kind of information by cold calling and making office visits. This is as simple as introducing yourself, setting up a meeting and asking questions.
Your research may lead to unanswered queries. In these instances, you need to remain persistent and follow-up with another call or office visit.
How to Get Trucking Contracts for the Long-Haul
You don’t want to spend every day clawing for trucking contracts. However, that’s exactly what will happen if you depend solely on job boards to find loads to haul.
You must develop an effective strategy to help you find loads and grow your business. Taking on anyone who needs goods moved is not a sustainable strategy.
You must pick and choose who you work with. In the beginning, this strategy may prove difficult, but it will pay off over time as your business grows consistently.
Are You Ready to Generate Sustainable Income?
Running a trucking business is hard work. You must divide your time between marketing, managing hauling contracts and driving. What’s more, the trucking business is highly competitive.
At the same time, you must keep your rig in top condition, monitor load boards, work with brokers, cover your expenses and manage administrative functions. It may seem impossible to run your business without a small army to support you.
ComFreight is at the ready to serve as your small army in the trucking business. Sign up for free today to learn how our app can help you build a sustainable trucking business.