Car Hauling Business Plan Template
Written by Dave Lavinsky
Car Hauling Business Plan
Over the past 20+ years, we have helped over 500 entrepreneurs and business owners create business plans to start and grow their car hauling companies.
If you’re unfamiliar with creating a car hauling business plan, you may think creating one will be a time-consuming and frustrating process. For most entrepreneurs it is, but for you, it won’t be since we’re here to help. We have the experience, resources, and knowledge to help you create a great business plan.
In this article, you will learn some background information on why business planning is important. Then, you will learn how to write a car hauling business plan step-by-step so you can create your plan today.
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What Is a Business Plan?
A business plan provides a snapshot of your car hauling business as it stands today, and lays out your growth plan for the next five years. It explains your business goals and your strategies for reaching them. It also includes market research to support your plans.
Why You Need a Business Plan
If you’re looking to start a car hauling business or grow your existing car hauling company, you need a business plan. A business plan will help you raise funding, if needed, and plan out the growth of your car hauling business to improve your chances of success. Your car hauling business plan is a living document that should be updated annually as your company grows and changes.
Sources of Funding for Car Hauling Businesses
With regards to funding, the main sources of funding for a car hauling business are personal savings, credit cards, bank loans, and angel investors. When it comes to bank loans, banks will want to review your business plan and gain confidence that you will be able to repay your loan and interest. To acquire this confidence, the loan officer will not only want to ensure that your financials are reasonable, but they will also want to see a professional plan. Such a plan will give them the confidence that you can successfully and professionally operate a business. Personal savings and bank loans are the most common funding paths for car hauling companies.
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How to write a business plan for a car hauling business.
If you want to start a car hauling business or expand your current one, you need a business plan. The guide below details the necessary information for how to write each essential component of your car hauling business plan.
Your executive summary provides an introduction to your business plan, but it is normally the last section you write because it provides a summary of each key section of your plan.
The goal of your executive summary is to quickly engage the reader. Explain to them the kind of car hauling business you are running and the status. For example, are you a startup, do you have a car hauling business that you would like to grow, or are you operating car hauling businesses in multiple markets?
Next, provide an overview of each of the subsequent sections of your plan.
- Give a brief overview of the car hauling industry.
- Discuss the type of car hauling business you are operating.
- Detail your direct competitors. Give an overview of your target customers.
- Provide a snapshot of your marketing strategy. Identify the key members of your team.
- Offer an overview of your financial plan.
In your company overview, you will detail the type of car hauling business you are operating.
For example, you might specialize in one of the following types of car hauling businesses:
- Long-distance car hauling : this type of car hauling company typically specializes in cross-continental and interstate trucking transportation of automobiles.
- Local car hauling: this type of car hauling company typically involves trucking transportation of autos from rail yards to their final destination in the immediate vicinity.
- Ship transport: this type of car hauling company includes coastal, Great Lakes, and deep-sea transportation of automobiles.
In addition to explaining the type of car hauling business you will operate, the company overview needs to provide background on the business.
Include answers to questions such as:
- When and why did you start the business?
- What milestones have you achieved to date? Milestones could include the number of cars delivered, the number of transportation contracts signed, reaching X number of clients served, etc.
- Your legal business Are you incorporated as an S-Corp? An LLC? A sole proprietorship? Explain your legal structure here.
In your industry or market analysis, you need to provide an overview of the car hauling industry.
While this may seem unnecessary, it serves multiple purposes.
First, researching the car hauling industry educates you. It helps you understand the market in which you are operating.
Secondly, market research can improve your marketing strategy, particularly if your analysis identifies market trends.
The third reason is to prove to readers that you are an expert in your industry. By conducting the research and presenting it in your plan, you achieve just that.
The following questions should be answered in the industry analysis section of your car hauling business plan:
- How big is the car hauling industry (in dollars)?
- Is the market declining or increasing?
- Who are the key competitors in the market?
- Who are the key suppliers in the market?
- What trends are affecting the industry?
- What is the industry’s growth forecast over the next 5 – 10 years?
- What is the relevant market size? That is, how big is the potential target market for your car hauling business? You can extrapolate such a figure by assessing the size of the market in the entire country and then applying that figure to your local population.
The customer analysis section of your car hauling business plan must detail the customers you serve and/or expect to serve.
The following are examples of customer segments: auto dealerships, car rental companies, wholesalers, and end users.
As you can imagine, the customer segment(s) you choose will have a great impact on the type of car hauling business you operate. Clearly, individuals would respond to different marketing promotions than car dealerships, for example.
Try to break out your target customers in terms of their demographic and psychographic profiles. With regards to demographics, including a discussion of the ages, genders, locations, and income levels of the potential customers you seek to serve.
Psychographic profiles explain the wants and needs of your target customers. The more you can recognize and define these needs, the better you will do in attracting and retaining your customers.
Your competitive analysis should identify the indirect and direct competitors your business faces and then focus on the latter.
Direct competitors are other car hauling businesses.
Indirect competitors are other options that customers have that aren’t directly competing with your product or service. This includes companies with in-house transportation services, or individuals who haul their own vehicles. You need to mention such competition as well.
For each such competitor, provide an overview of their business and document their strengths and weaknesses. Unless you once worked at your competitors’ businesses, it will be impossible to know everything about them. But you should be able to find out key things about them such as
- What types of customers do they serve?
- What type of car hauling business are they?
- What is their pricing (premium, low, etc.)?
- What are they good at?
- What are their weaknesses?
With regards to the last two questions, think about your answers from the customers’ perspective. And don’t be afraid to ask your competitors’ customers what they like most and least about them.
The final part of your competitive analysis section is to document your areas of competitive advantage. For example:
- Will you provide rapid delivery options?
- Will you offer services that your competition doesn’t?
- Will you provide better customer service?
- Will you offer better pricing?
Think about ways you will outperform your competition and document them in this section of your plan.
Traditionally, a marketing plan includes the four P’s: Product, Price, Place, and Promotion. For a car hauling business plan, your marketing strategy should include the following:
Product : In the product section, you should reiterate the type of car hauling company that you documented in your company overview. Then, detail the specific products or services you will be offering. For example, will you provide long-distance hauling, or local hauling?
Price : Document the prices you will offer and how they compare to your competitors. Essentially in the product and price sub-sections of your plan, you are presenting the products and/or services you offer and their prices.
Place : Place refers to the site of your car hauling company. Document where your company is situated and mention how the site will impact your success. For example, is your car hauling business located near a busy port or railroad? Discuss how your site might be the ideal location for your customers.
Promotions : The final part of your car hauling marketing plan is where you will document how you will drive potential customers to your location(s). The following are some promotional methods you might consider:
- Advertise in local papers, radio stations and/or magazines
- Reach out to websites
- Distribute flyers
- Engage in email marketing
- Advertise on social media platforms
- Improve the SEO (search engine optimization) on your website for targeted keywords
While the earlier sections of your business plan explained your goals, your operations plan describes how you will meet them. Your operations plan should have two distinct sections as follows.
Everyday short-term processes include all of the tasks involved in running your car hauling business, including answering calls, negotiating contracts, coordinating deliveries, determining routes, etc.
Long-term goals are the milestones you hope to achieve. These could include the dates when you expect to deliver your Xth load of cars, or when you hope to reach $X in revenue. It could also be when you expect to expand your car hauling business to a new city or region.
To demonstrate your car hauling business’ potential to succeed, a strong management team is essential. Highlight your key players’ backgrounds, emphasizing those skills and experiences that prove their ability to grow a company.
Ideally, you and/or your team members have direct experience in managing car hauling businesses. If so, highlight this experience and expertise. But also highlight any experience that you think will help your business succeed.
If your team is lacking, consider assembling an advisory board. An advisory board would include 2 to 8 individuals who would act as mentors to your business. They would help answer questions and provide strategic guidance. If needed, look for advisory board members with experience in managing a car hauling business or successfully running a transportation company.
Your financial plan should include your 5-year financial statement broken out both monthly or quarterly for the first year and then annually. Your financial statements include your income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statements.
An income statement is more commonly called a Profit and Loss statement or P&L. It shows your revenue and then subtracts your costs to show whether you turned a profit or not.
In developing your income statement, you need to devise assumptions. For example, will you use enclosed trailers to haul one or two high-value cars at a time, or will you use an open car carrier to haul nine cars at a time? And will sales grow by 2% or 10% per year? As you can imagine, your choice of assumptions will greatly impact the financial forecasts for your business. As much as possible, conduct research to try to root your assumptions in reality.
Balance sheets show your assets and liabilities. While balance sheets can include much information, try to simplify them to the key items you need to know about. For instance, if you spend $50,000 on building out your car hauling business, this will not give you immediate profits. Rather it is an asset that will hopefully help you generate profits for years to come. Likewise, if a lender writes you a check for $50,000, you don’t need to pay it back immediately. Rather, that is a liability you will pay back over time.
Cash Flow Statement
Your cash flow statement will help determine how much money you need to start or grow your business, and ensure you never run out of money. What most entrepreneurs and business owners don’t realize is that you can turn a profit but run out of money and go bankrupt.
When creating your Income Statement and Balance Sheets be sure to include several of the key costs needed in starting or growing a car hauling business:
- Cost of equipment, tires, and fuel
- Payroll or salaries paid to staff
- Business insurance
- Other start-up expenses (if you’re a new business) like legal expenses, permits, computer software, and equipment
Attach your full financial projections in the appendix of your plan along with any supporting documents that make your plan more compelling. For example, you might include your office location lease or a map of the routes you frequent.
Writing a business plan for your car hauling business is a worthwhile endeavor. If you follow the template above, by the time you are done, you will truly be an expert. You will understand the car hauling industry, your competition, and your customers. You will develop a marketing strategy and will understand what it takes to launch and grow a successful car hauling business.
Car Hauling Business Plan Template FAQs
What is the easiest way to complete my car hauling business plan.
Growthink's Ultimate Business Plan Template allows you to quickly and easily write your car hauling business plan.
How Do You Start a Car Hauling Business?
Starting a car hauling business is easy with these 14 steps:
- Choose the Name for Your Car Hauling Business
- Create Your Car Hauling Business Plan
- Choose the Legal Structure for Your Car Hauling Business
- Secure Startup Funding for Car Hauling Business (If Needed)
- Secure a Location for Your Business
- Register Your Car Hauling Business with the IRS
- Open a Business Bank Account
- Get a Business Credit Card
- Get the Required Business Licenses and Permits
- Get Business Insurance for Your Car Hauling Business
- Buy or Lease the Right Car Hauling Business Equipment
- Develop Your Car Hauling Business Marketing Materials
- Purchase and Setup the Software Needed to Run Your Car Hauling Business
- Open for Business
Learn more about how to start your own hauling business .
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Other Helpful Business Plan Articles & Templates
Car Hauling Business Plan [Sample Template]
By: Author Tony Martins Ajaero
Home » Business ideas » Transportation Industry » Car Hauling
Are you about starting a car hauling company? If YES, here is a complete sample car hauling business plan template & feasibility report you can use for FREE . Okay, so we have considered all the requirements for starting a car hauling company. If you have an interest in the automobile industry, then you may want to start your own car hauling business.
Then car hauling/car towing business is indeed a profitable business because when your car breaks down on the road or when you need to tow a non – functional car from an accident site to the auto mechanical garage, you would definitely call a car hauling company.
Even though you don’t need a college degree to establish your own car hauling business , yet you still need some form of informal training; you might have to work as an apprentice with someone who owns a car hauling services business. It makes it easier for you to learn the ropes on how to manage your own car hauling services business when you get started.
It is important to point out that a car hauling business is one the businesses that may not go out of fashion simply because of the role it plays in the auto industry. Depending on the scale you want to start, the startup capital for this type of business can be considered to be moderate.
As a matter of fact, you can start your own car hauling services business as a one man show and then grow it big within a short period of time by reinvesting your profits back to the business. If you are sure this type of business is what you want to do after you must have undertaken your feasibility studies and market research, the next step is to write a decent business plan.
It is one thing to have a fantastic idea cum business plan, and it is entirely another thing for the business plan to translate to profits, that is why it is important to assemble a team of dedicated workers if you want to be successful with your car hauling business.
Below is a sample car hauling business plan template that will help you successfully write yours without much stress.
A Sample Car Hauling Business Plan Template
1. industry overview.
Car hauling services companies are part of the automobile towing industry and players in this industry generally tow light or heavy vehicles over short and long distances.
Car hauling services companies may also provide incidental services such as storage and emergency road repair services. As a matter of fact, car hauling services companies can be found in all parts of the world as long as there are automobiles there.
If you are a close watcher of the Automobile Towing industry, you may agree that the industry has kept on tagging along. As the economy of the united states continues to improve, as individuals returned to work and disposable income started to rise, more consumers felt comfortable driving on their own as opposed to carpooling or taking public transportation.
It is a known fact that when more cars are on the road, the chances of an accident or need for roadside assistance rises, hence increasing demand for car hauling services. Going forward, the revenue generated in the industry will continue to increase positively.
The Automobile Towing Industry is indeed a large industry and pretty much active in all the countries of the world. Statistics has it that in the United States of America alone, there are about 38,376 registered and licensed large and small-scale automobile towing services companies scattered all across the United States responsible for directly employing about 86,829 people and the industry rakes in a whooping sum of $6 billion annually.
The industry is projected to grow at 2.5 percent annual growth within 2011 and 2016. It is important to state no company has a lion share of the available market share in the industry.
A recent report released by IBISWorld shows that industry establishments are generally located in regions with relatively high population and vehicle concentrations, notably the Southeast and West regions. The report further stated that the Automobile Towing industry is a needs-based industry and companies typically locate where there is the highest concentration of drivers and a lack of public transportation.
The report also shows that the Southeast region is home to the largest concentration of population relative to any other region in the nation. This region lacks the public transportation infrastructure of the Mid-Atlantic and New England regions.
Therefore, industry operators located here take advantage of a large proportion of the population using automotive vehicles as a primary means of transportation. This region accounts for about 24.3 percent of industry establishments.
Lastly, the automobile towing industry is pretty much open for aspiring entrepreneurs to launch their business in the industry.
One good thing about car hauling business is that the business can be opened in any part of the United States with just one car hauling truck and if proper market survey and feasibility studies are conducted, then you can be rest assured of the profitability of the business.
2. Executive Summary
Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC is a standard and licensed towing truck company that will be based in Nashville – Tennessee, US. We will provide essential services to the United States by moving broken down, improperly parked, impounded, or otherwise indisposed cars away from to the road so as to avoid obstruction of free flow of traffic.
Our services and operations will center around highways in an around Tennessee, South Dakota, North Dakota, Southern Illinois; St Louis, Missouri; Southeast Missouri; Evansville, Nashville, Memphis, Western Kentucky and Chicago land areas et al.
Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC has been able to secure all the relevant licenses and permits to operate throughout the United States. We will ensure that we abide by the rules and regulations guiding the automobile towing industry and we will only hire experienced and qualified drivers with valid commercial driver’s license.
At Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC our clients’ overall best interest would always come first, and everything we do will be guided by our values and professional ethics. We will ensure that we put standard structures and processes in place that will enable us meet and surpass our business goals and also stay highly competitive in the industry.
Our customers and potential customers alike can be rest assured that they will get quality services at competitive rates when they hire our services. We will go the extra mile to ensure the safety of cars under our care and that our customers get value for their money. At Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC our goal is to provide excellent car hauling service to our customers and we pride ourselves on the integrity and competence of our employees.
Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC will ensure that all our deliveries are on time and we supersede the expectation of our customers. We will only put towing trucks that are in top shape on the road, and all our towing truck drivers will be trained to be courteous, friendly and to abide by the rules and regulations of the industry.
Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC will at all times demonstrate her commitment to sustainability by actively participating in our communities and integrating sustainable business practices wherever possible. We will ensure that we hold ourselves accountable to the highest standards by meeting our clients’ needs precisely and completely.
Our overall business goal is to position Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC to become one of the leading towing truck company brands in the United States of America within the first 5 years of operation. This might look too tall a dream but we are optimistic that this will surely come to pass because we have done our research and feasibility studies and we are enthusiastic and confident that Nashville – Tennessee is the right place to launch our towing truck business.
Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC is a family business; it is owned by Robert Crowther and his immediate family members. Robert Crowther has a Diploma in Transport and Logistics with over 9 years of hands on experience working for some of the leading brands in the transport and logistics industry in the United States of America.
3. Our Products and Services
Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC is a company that looks forward to delivering excellent services in terms of helping our customers move their broken – down car from one destination to another. We want to be known as the car hauling company that truly cares for her customers.
Our intention of starting our car hauling company is to favorable compete in the industry and of course to make profits from the industry and we will do all that is permitted by the law in the United States of America to achieve our aims and business goals.
Our business offerings are listed below;
- Car hauling services
- Emergency road repair services
- Roadside assistance services
4. Our Mission and Vision Statement
- Our vision is to become one of the preferred choices when it comes to the demand for car hauling services in and around Nashville – Tennessee and the whole of the United States of America.
- Our mission is to ensure that we build a car hauling company that will operate in the whole of the United States of America; a company that will boast of having some of the best and reliable tow truck drivers in the whole of the United States of America.
Our Business Structure
At Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC, our business structure will be designed in such a way that it can accommodate both full-time and part-time staff.
As a means of maximizing operational cost, we will contract the maintenance of all our towing trucks to service providers; we don’t intend to maintain a very large overhead from the onset. But as soon as the business grows and stabilizes, we will assemble our own professional in – house maintenance team.
Below are the business structure and the roles that will be available at Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC;
- Chief Operating Officer (Owner)
Admin and HR Manager
Sales and Marketing Manager
- Professional Towing Truck Drivers
- Client Service Executive/Front Desk Officer
5. Job Roles and Responsibilities
Chief Executive Officer – CEO:
- Increases management’s effectiveness by recruiting, selecting, orienting, training, coaching, counseling, and disciplining managers; communicating values, strategies, and objectives; assigning accountabilities; planning, monitoring, and appraising job results; developing incentives; developing a climate for offering information and opinions; providing educational opportunities.
- Creates, communicates, and implements the organization’s vision, mission, and overall direction – i.e. leading the development and implementation of the overall organization’s strategy.
- In authority of fixing prices and signing business deals
- Responsible for providing direction for the business
- Responsible for signing checks and documents on behalf of the company
- Assesses the success of the organization
- Responsible for overseeing the smooth running of HR and administrative tasks for the organization
- Maintains office supplies by checking stocks; placing and expediting orders; evaluating new products.
- Ensures operation of equipment by completing preventive maintenance requirements; calling for repairs.
- Updates job knowledge by participating in educational opportunities; reading professional publications; maintaining personal networks; participating in professional organizations.
- Improves department and organization reputation by accepting ownership for accomplishing new and different requests; exploring opportunities to add value to job accomplishments.
- Defines job positions for recruitment and managing interviewing process
- Carries out staff induction for new team members
- Responsible for training, evaluation and assessment of employees
- Responsible for arranging travel, meetings and appointments
- Oversees the smooth running of the daily office activities.
- Manages external research and coordinate all the internal sources of information to retain the organizations’ best customers and attract new ones
- Models demographic information and analyze the volumes of transactional data generated by customer purchases
- Identifies, prioritizes, and reaches out to new partners, and business opportunities et al
- Identifies development opportunities; follows up on development leads and contacts; participates in the structuring and financing of projects; assures the completion of development projects.
- Responsible for supervising implementation, advocate for the customer’s needs, and communicate with clients
- Develops, executes and evaluates new plans for expanding sales
- Documents all customer contact and information
- Represents the company in strategic meetings
- Helps to increase sales and growth for the company
- Responsible for preparing financial reports, budgets, and financial statements for the organization
- Provides managers with financial analyses, development budgets, and accounting reports; analyzes financial feasibility for the most complex proposed projects; conducts market research to forecast trends and business conditions.
- Responsible for financial forecasting and risks analysis.
- Performs cash management, general ledger accounting, and financial reporting for one or more properties.
- Responsible for developing and managing financial systems and policies
- Responsible for administering payrolls
- Ensures compliance with taxation legislation
- Handles all financial transactions for the company
- Serves as internal auditor for the company
- Drives towing trucks
- Maintains a logbook of their driving activities to ensure compliance with federal regulations governing the rest and work periods for operators.
- Keeps a record of vehicle inspections and make sure the towing truck is equipped with safety equipment, such as hazardous material placards.
- Inspects vehicles for mechanical items and safety issues and perform preventative maintenance
- Complies with towing truck driving rules and regulations (size, weight, route designations, parking, break periods etc.) as well as with company policies and procedures
- Collects and verifies delivery instructions
- Reports defects, accidents or violations
Client Service Executive
- Welcomes/receive clients by greeting them in person or on the telephone; answering or directing inquiries.
- Ensures that all contacts with clients provides the client with a personalized customer service experience of the highest level
- Through interaction with parents and students on the phone, uses every opportunity to build clients’ interest in the organizations’ products and services
- Manages administrative duties assigned by the HR and Admin Manager or Transport & Logistic Manager in an effective and timely manner
- Consistently stays abreast of any new information on the organizations’ products, promotional campaigns etc. to ensure accurate and helpful information is supplied to clients when they make enquiries
- Receives parcels/documents for the organization
- Distribute mails in the organization
- Handles any other duties as assigned by HR and Admin Manager or Transport & Logistic Manager
6. SWOT Analysis
Our intention of starting Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC in Nashville – Tennessee is to test run the business for a period of 3 to 6 months to know if we will invest more money, and expand the business all around in the United States of America.
We are quite aware that there are several car hauling service businesses all over the United States and even in the same locations we intend starting ours, which is why we are following the due process of establishing a business. We know that if a proper SWOT analysis is conducted for our business, we will be able to position our business to maximize our strength, leverage on the opportunities that will be available to us, mitigate our risks and be well – equipped to confront our threats.
Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC employed the services of an expert HR and Business Analyst with bias in startups to help us conduct a thorough SWOT analysis and to help us create a Business model that will help us achieve our business goals and objectives.
This is the summary of the SWOT analysis that was conducted for Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC;
Our highly qualified and experienced management team, robust fleet operations, our car hauling transportation network, size advantage, cost advantage, supply chain, customer loyalty and strong reputation amongst domestic industry players will surely count as a strength for Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC.
Our weakness could be lack of finance, high debt burden, cost structure, lack of scale compared to our peers who have already gained ground in the automobile towing industry.
The opportunities that are available to us as a car hauling company operating in the United States of America are online market, new services, new technology, and of course the opening of new markets within our target locations. In addition, as the average age of vehicles on the road increases, it will surely result to more repairs and car hauling services.
Some of the threats that we are likely going to face are mature markets, bad economy (economy downturn), stiff competition, volatile costs, and rising fuel prices. Basically, just like any other business, one of the major threats that we are likely going to face is economic downturn. Another threat that may likely confront us is the arrival of a car hauling company in same location where ours is located. unfavorable government policies can also pose a major threat to businesses such as ours.
7. MARKET ANALYSIS
- Market Trends
The market trends as it involves the automobile towing industry especially in the United States of America are indeed dynamic and at the same time highly competitive and challenging. But one thing is certain, once a car hauling services company can gain credibility; it will be much easier for the company to secure permanent deals/contracts with big time haulage/transportation companies who are always moving goods and equipment from one part of The United States of America to another part (such companies usually have broken – down vehicles).
Some of the major factors that counts positively in this line of business are trust, honesty, good relationship management and of course timely and safe delivery.
The advancement in technology in areas such as computers, satellite communication, and the internet, has contributed immensely to the growth of the automobile towing industry. The advancement in technology is responsible for increase of productivity of car hauling company’s operations, it helps them effectively monitor their towing trucks and their drivers and it helps driver save time and effort.
Lastly, another common trend in this industry is that once a car hauling services company has gained credibility, it is easier for them to go for brand new towing trucks on a long – term leasing contract as against making use of second hand towing trucks which are usually expensive to maintain due to constant wear and tear.
8. Our Target Market
Our target market is basically transportation and haulage companies and of course every individual we own cars throughout the United States of America. We cover both short distance (inter states) and long distance (intra states). In other words, our target market is the whole of the United States of America and below is a list of the people and organizations that we have plans to do business with;
- Car garages
- Transportation companies
- Haulage companies
Our Competitive Advantage
We are aware of the competitive nature of the automobile towing industry and we are ready to get into the mix and favorably compete with players in the industry.
Our major competitive advantage is the vast industry experience and solid reputation of our owner, and our management team.
Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC no doubt is a new car hauling services company, which is why we took our time to do a thorough market research and feasibility studies before launching the business. We were able to highlight some factors that will give us competitive advantage in the marketplace.
Some of the factors are trust, honesty, good network and excellent relationship management, well – qualified and experienced management team, robust fleet operations, direct access to all major highways, our car hauling network serves some of the largest population centers and construction sites in the United States of America, our size advantages, cost advantages, customer loyalty and strong reputation amongst domestic industry players.
Lastly, our employees will be well taken care of, and their welfare package will be among the best within our category in the industry meaning that they will be more than willing to build the business with us and help deliver our set goals and achieve all our business aims and objectives.
9. SALES AND MARKETING STRATEGY
- Sources of Income
Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC will ensure that we leverage on our strength and the opportunities available to us in the U.S. to generate enough income that will help us drive the business to stability. We will go all the way to explore every available source of income in the automobile towing industry.
Below are the sources we intend exploring to generate income for Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC;
10. Sales Forecast
One thing is certain, there would always be vehicle owners, haulage and transportation companies who would need the services of car hauling service companies to help them move their broken – down vehicles from one location to another throughout the United States of America.
We are well positioned to take on the available market in the United States of America and we are quite optimistic that we will meet our set target of generating enough income from the first six months of operation and grow our business and our clientele base.
We have been able to critically examine the automobile towing industry market in the United States of America, we have analyzed our chances in the industry and we have been able to come up with the following sales forecast. The sales projections are based on information gathered on the field and some assumptions that are peculiar to similar startups in The United States of America.
- First Fiscal Year: $250,000
- Second Fiscal Year: $550,000
- Third Fiscal Year: $900,000
N.B : This projection was done based on what is obtainable in the industry and with the assumption that there won’t be any major economic meltdown and natural disasters within the period stated above. So also, there won’t be any major competitor offering same additional services as we do within same location. Please note that the above projection might be lower and at the same time it might be higher.
- Marketing Strategy and Sales Strategy
Networking is an effective way to begin building your client base as a business man or woman and we have plans in place to leverage on all our networks. In view of that, we will look out for gatherings where we can network with vehicle owners, transport and haulage companies and merchants et al. As a matter of fact, our first port of call will be to connect with the nearest Chamber of Commerce; we are likely going to get our first major deal from them.
At Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC all our employees will be directly or indirectly involved in sales and marketing of our services. We will create provision for our employees to earn commission when they bring in business for the organization. We will also encourage freelancers to work with us; whenever they refer clients to us they will earn a percentage of the deal as agreed by both parties.
Lastly, we will leverage on the power of the media by advertising our services using both online and offline platforms. We will work hard to ensure that we get repeated business from any business deal we execute and also, we will encourage our customers to help us refer their friends to us. Part of our strategy is to reward loyal customers and to leverage on word of mouth marketing from satisfied customers.
Over and above, we have perfected strategies to network with people who are likely to refer business our way on a regular basis. In summary, Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC will adopt the following sales and marketing strategies in sourcing for clients for our business;
- Introduce our business by sending introductory letters alongside our brochure to households/car owners, car garages, corporate organizations, businesses in the transportation and haulage industry and related industries in Nashville – Tennessee and throughout the United States
- Print handbills about our car hauling service business and its locations and drop them in public facilities
- Advertise on the internet on blogs and forums, and also on social media like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn to get our message across
- Creating a basic website for our business so as to give our business an online presence
- Directly market our towing truck business
- Join local towing truck cum car hauling service associations and chambers of commerce for industry trends and tips
- Provide discount days for our customers
- Advertise our business in community based newspapers, local TV and radio stations
- List our business on yellow pages ads (local directories)
- Encourage the use of Word of mouth marketing (referrals)
11. Publicity and Advertising Strategy
In spite of the fact that our car hauling services company will be well located, we will still go ahead to intensify publicity for the business. We are going to explore all available means to promote our business.
Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC has a long – term plan of covering various locations in major cities in the United States which is why we will deliberately build our brand to be well accepted on highways in an around South Dakota, North Dakota, Southern Illinois; St Louis, Missouri; Southeast Missouri; Evansville, IN; Nashville, Tennessee; Memphis, Western Kentucky, Tennessee and Chicago land areas et al before venturing out to other cities in the United States of America.
As a matter of fact, our publicity and advertising strategy is not solely for winning customers over but to effectively communicate our brand. Here are the platforms we intend leveraging on to promote and advertise Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC;
- Place adverts on both print (community based newspapers and magazines) and electronic media platforms
- Sponsor relevant community programs
- Leverage on the internet and social media platforms to promote our brand
- Install our billboards in strategic locations all around Nashville – Tennessee
- Distribute our fliers and handbills in target areas
- Ensure that all our workers wear our branded shirts and all our trucks are well branded with our company’s logo
12. Our Pricing Strategy
Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC has a lease arrangement with various companies and the company’s pricing is based on miles per vehicle moved. We have perfected our plans to charge competitive rates since we have minimal full – time overhead compared to our competition in the industry.
We will ensure that we leverage on price to win over customers; our prices will be affordable and negotiable. The fact that our business door is open to both individuals and organizations means that we will have different price range for different category of clients.
As the business grows, we will continue to review our pricing system to accommodate a wide range of clientele.
- Payment Options
At Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC, our payment policy will be inclusive because we are quite aware that different people prefer different payment options as it suits them but at the same time, we will not accept payment by cash because of the volume of cash that will be involved in most of our transactions.
Here are the payment options that Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC will make available to her clients;
- Payment via bank transfer
- Payment with cash
- Payment via credit cards / Point of Sale Machines
- Payment via online bank transfer
- Payment via check
- Payment via mobile money transfer
- Payment via bank draft
In view of the above, we have chosen banking platforms that will enable our client make payment for services rendered without any stress on their part. Our bank account numbers will be made available on our website and promotional materials.
13. Startup Expenditure (Budget)
In setting up any business, the amount or cost will depend on the approach and scale you want to undertake. If you intend to go big by renting a place, then you would need a good amount of capital as you would need to ensure that your employees are well taken care of, and that your facility is conducive enough for workers to be creative and productive.
This means that the start-up can either be low or high depending on your goals, vision and aspirations for your business. The tools and equipment that will be used are nearly the same cost everywhere, and any difference in prices would be minimal and can be overlooked.
When it comes to starting a car hauling services company, the major areas that you look towards spending the bulk of your cash is in the purchase of standard towing trucks and of course renting or leasing a well-located facility large enough to accommodate your towing trucks.
Aside from that, you are not expected to spend much except for paying of your employees, maintaining your towing trucks and fueling. These are the key areas where we will spend our startup capital;
- The Total Fee for incorporating the Business in the United States of America – $750
- The budget for Liability insurance, permits and license – $2,500
- The Amount needed to acquire a suitable Office facility with enough parking space for our trucks in Nashville – Tennessee for 6 months (Re – Construction of the facility inclusive) – $40,000.
- The amount required to finance the purchase of the first set of towing trucks – $800,000
- The Cost for equipping the office (computers, printers, fax machines, furniture, telephones, filing cabins, safety gadgets and electronics et al) – $5,000
- Cost of accounting software, CRM software and Payroll Software – $3,000
- Other start-up expenses including stationery – $1000
- Phone and Utility (gas, sewer, water and electric) deposits – ( $3,500 )
- Operational cost for the first 3 months – $40,000
- The cost of launching our official Website – $600
- The Amount needed to pay staff for the first 2 months – $20,000
- Additional Expenditure (Business cards, Signage, Adverts and Promotions et al) – $2,500
Going by the report from our market research and feasibility studies, we will need an estimate of $1.2 Million to set up a standard car hauling services company in Nashville – Tennessee.
Generating Startup Capital for Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC
Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC is a family business that will be owned and managed by Robert Crowther and his immediate family members. They are the sole financier of the business which is why they decided to restrict the sourcing of the startup capital for the business to just three major sources.
These are the areas we intend generating our startup capital;
- Generate part of the startup capital from personal savings and sale of his stocks
- Generate part of the startup capital from friends and other extended family members
- Generate a larger chunk of the startup capital from the bank (loan facility).
N.B: We have been able to generate about $400,000 ( Personal savings $350,000 and soft loan from family members $50,000 ) and we are at the final stages of obtaining a loan facility of $800,000 from our bank. All the papers and documents have been duly signed and submitted, the loan has been approved and any moment from now our account will be credited.
14. Sustainability and Expansion Strategy
The future of any business lies in the number of loyal customers that they have, the capacity and competence of their employees, their investment strategy and their business structure. If all of these factors are missing from a business, then it won’t be too long before the business closes shop.
One of our major goals of starting Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC is to build a business that will survive off its own cash flow without the need for injecting finance from external sources once the business is officially running. We know that one of the ways of gaining approval and winning customers over is to engage in affordable, timely, safe and efficient car hauling/towing services at all times.
Car Links® Hauling Services, LLC will make sure that the right foundation, structures and processes are put in place to ensure that our staff welfare are well taken of. Our company’s corporate culture is designed to drive our business to greater heights and training and re – training of our workforce is at the top burner.
As a matter of fact, profit-sharing arrangement will be made available to all our management staff and it will be based on their performance for a period of three years or more. We know that if that is put in place, we will be able to successfully hire and retain the best hands we can get in the industry; they will be more committed to help us build the business of our dreams.
- Business Name Availability Check: Completed
- Business Incorporation: Completed
- Opening of Corporate Bank Accounts various banks in the United States: Completed
- Opening Online Payment Platforms: Completed
- Application and Obtaining Tax Payer’s ID: In Progress
- Application for business license and permit: Completed
- Purchase of Insurance for the Business: Completed
- Acquiring of tow trucks and relevant equipment: In progress
- Leasing of Office Facility/Yard large enough in Nashville – Tennessee: Completed
- Conducting Feasibility Studies: Completed
- Startup Capital Generation: Completed
- Writing of Business Plan: Completed
- Drafting of Employee’s Handbook: Completed
- Drafting of Contract Documents: In Progress
- Design of The Company’s Logo: Completed
- Graphic Designs and Printing of Promotional Materials: Completed
- Recruitment of employees and drivers: In Progress
- Purchase of the needed furniture, office equipment, electronic appliances and facility facelift: In progress
- Creating Official Website for the Company: In Progress
- Creating Awareness for the business (Business PR): In Progress
- Health and Safety and Fire Safety Arrangement: In Progress
- Establishing business relationship with key players in the industry (networking and membership of relevant organizations and chambers of commerce): Completed
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How to Start a Car Transport Business
Do you find the idea of starting an auto hauler business interesting? If so, it's time to acquaint yourself with the groundwork needed to kick-start the venture. The best part is that you can run this type of business as your own boss. Doing so allows you to leverage your enthusiasm for driving long distances and interest in the trucking industry to make the business successful.
The startup costs for a car-hauling business are relatively moderate. Starting a new company as an owner-operator helps reduce the overheads. Over time, you'll grow your operations by reinvesting the profits, allowing you to hire a truck driver and administrative staff.
In this guide, you'll discover key steps to plan and set up your business.
Obtain Professional Certification
Although you can start and run a car-hauler company without any formal education or training, it's beneficial to obtain certification. As a result, you'll find it easier to stand out in the highly competitive auto transport industry. Examples of certifications include:
- National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence – ASE certified technicians
- Association of Finance and Insurance Professionals (AFIP) – F&I regulation certification
- Commercial driver's license (CDL)
Many business owners in this industry work as apprentices at an established trucking company before becoming new business owners.
How to Plan Your Auto Transport Business
Like any other commercial enterprise, your car-hauler venture requires a well-developed plan. To plan more effectively, make strategic decisions based on insights gleaned from comprehensive research about the industry and market trends. A proper plan incorporates cost estimates, marketing strategies, service niches, and pricing strategies.
When it comes to compliance, keep your trucks in good condition and adhere to gross vehicle weight requirements. If you're an owner-operator, your driving record is an essential part of the business.
Write a Car-Hauling Business Plan
Successful transport company entrepreneurs handle day-to-day operations based on a detailed business plan. In the plan, you should outline various operational points. These key aspects include:
- Cargo insurance and liability insurance
- Business ownership structure
- Acquiring a business license
- Hauling company financial projections
- Improving core business processes with digital products like Skynova's software
- Central dispatch plan
- Marketing plan
- Fueling and maintenance
In the marketing section of your car hauler business plan, identify the most effective ways to spread the word about your services. An effective plan incorporates both offline and online marketing channels. As a result, you may find it easier to boost profits with a steady stream of car-hauling loads.
Select the Ideal Motor Carrier Service Niche
As a small business owner focusing on vehicle hauling, you need to choose the type of service to offer clients. Your chosen niche determines the type of truck or fleet of trucks you need. You can transport multiple used or new cars for short or long distances. One viable option is to partner with car dealerships, which can be a source of ongoing work.
Alternatively, your transport company can focus on moving one vehicle at a time using a car trailer. You can haul the vehicles in an open or enclosed trailer depending on factors like road conditions.
Determine Operating Costs
To avoid budgeting problems, carefully evaluate your startup and ongoing expenses.
Startup costs include:
- Company registration fee
- Acquiring a reliable car-hauling truck (or pickup trucks)
- Office furniture
- Obtaining a DOT number
- Unified Carrier Registration (UCR) (FMCSA monitors compliance)
Ongoing car carrier operating costs include:
- Fuel and maintenance costs
- Heavy vehicle use tax
- IRP (International Registration Plan) plates
- Annual permit fees
- Tollgate fees
- Insurance premiums
Starting operations with a single truck enables you to minimize initial capital requirements. Hence, you can begin operations faster without worrying about further funding challenges. If you plan to acquire a used truck, ensure that the vehicle is in good condition to reduce repair and maintenance costs. Opt for a truck that's not more than five years old.
On the other hand, Skynova software provides a viable way to create professional order confirmations , quotes , and advance payment requests . With template-based solutions, you can handle various accounting tasks, such as recordkeeping, sending customizable invoices , and resolving billing errors with credit notes .
Setting Up Your Car Transport Business
Registering your car-hauling company allows you to benefit from its legal entity status. It becomes easier to distinguish between company and personal assets depending on your chosen business structure. As you set up the venture, take out adequate insurance, obtain the required business licenses, and pick a unique name.
The process of registering your business name is straightforward. Before registration, check whether your chosen name is not already in use by visiting the secretary of state's website. If the name is not in use by another company, proceed to the next stage: company formation.
Register Your Transportation Business
Depending on your long-term plans, you can select one of several business structures. If you aim to grow the auto transport venture into a larger company with branches in multiple states, opt for either a partnership, corporation, or limited liability company (LLC). A sole proprietorship isn't ideal for larger, multi-owner companies.
With a car-hauling LLC, you benefit from limited liability in the event of lawsuits. Thus, third parties can't use personal assets to cover debts or legal fees. Additionally, an LLC is a simpler and more flexible business structure than a corporation. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) allows you to pay taxes as an individual (pass-through tax status).
Additionally, depending on the business structure you choose, you may need to apply for an employer identification number (EIN) from the IRS for tax purposes and to open a bank account.
Obtain Licenses and Permits
For your startup motor carrier business to operate smoothly, you must comply with federal, state, and local regulations. Thus, identify all the applicable permits and licenses and obtain them. Doing so can also help your company gain credibility in the competitive trucking industry.
Examples of required permits and licenses include heavy load permits and a commercial vehicle license. The law also requires you to obtain a DOT number via the Department of Transportation. A motor carrier number or operating authority (MC/FF number) is mandatory if you plan to operate in multiple states. Furthermore, check long-distance driver regulations applicable in the relevant states.
Take Out Insurance
Your trucking business requires adequate insurance to comply with regulations. You should carry general liability insurance and other trucker insurance policy products that provide sufficient coverage in case of unexpected events. Additional policies offered by your chosen insurance company may include business owner's policy group insurance and worker's compensation.
Open a Business Bank Account
As you set up your car transportation company, you can separate personal assets from commercial affairs by opening a dedicated business account. An added benefit of the account is that you can start building your business's credit history. Relying on a personal bank account undermines your ability to access business loans to grow the venture.
Although banks have varying requirements, you'll need to submit registration documents and the EIN confirmation letter to open a new bank account. If you chose a sole proprietorship business structure, you can submit a Social Security number (SSN). Once the account is active, you'll be able to handle accounting and taxes more conveniently. Skynova's accounting software can also enhance your business processes by simplifying recordkeeping, billing, and other aspects.
Determine Your Tax Obligations
The IRS taxes companies differently depending on their chosen business structure. This means you need to select your vehicle-hauling business structure carefully. An LLC comes with more flexible tax reporting requirements, while corporations are subject to more complex business taxes.
You should also consider state and local taxes that apply to your company. As a car transport company, you may pay heavy vehicle use tax and other taxes. Failure to comply with specific tax requirements can compromise your company's finances. Authorities issue fines and other penalties for failing to report and pay the required taxes.
Market Your Car Carrier Business
Adopting a proactive approach to marketing your services keeps the wheels rolling. An effective marketing strategy helps you compete favorably with smaller and more established car-hauling firms in your area. The first steps to achieving your objectives include formulating a robust branding strategy. Doing so bolsters your business's presence in the sector, enabling your target market to recognize your business name and logo.
Build a Website
Establishing an online presence by creating an auto transport website and a Google My Business page makes it easier for clients to discover your services. The platforms complement other online and offline marketing channels, such as social media, seminars, and print ads.
You can build a highly functional and aesthetically pleasing website without the assistance of a professional web developer. Web hosts provide access to intuitive website-building tools that eliminate the need for programming skills. However, if you want to work with an experienced developer, search for freelancers via Upwork or Fiverr .
Create an Eye-Catching Logo
The most prominent companies in the trucking business have recognizable logos and other branding elements. To stand out in the sector, create a distinctive logo. By choosing the right design, you send a powerful message about your business. Your company's logo appears in marketing materials, including the website, brochures, and social media pages.
Handling Day-to-Day Operations
Tracking and managing company finances is an unavoidable task that requires experience or an intuitive accounting software product. Thankfully, Skynova offers various template solutions that allow you to handle finances efficiently. You can send your car transport clients professional invoices, making it easier to receive payments quickly and easily.
With Skynova's invoice template , it's easier to accept credit card payments and manage invoices with the touch of a button.
Maintain Higher Standards With Skynova
Starting and operating a car transport company successfully can be an exciting and rewarding journey. To achieve your objectives, you need to comply with regulations, choose the ideal business structure, budget appropriately, and streamline day-to-day processes. Thankfully, Skynova can help with that last part.
To see what Skynova's software products and business templates can do for your business, check out our product range today.
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- Transport Business Plan
Transport business is a huge market for transport of both persons and goods. The transport business has recently gained a lot of boom due to the increase of various new players in the market like car hire companies, truck and tempo hire companies, etc. With the ever growing economy and the constant migration of workforce between the cities the transport business gains a huge boost with many business opportunities like movers and packers services, grocery transportation services, bike rental services, etc.
The transport business like any other business comes with its own set of highs and vulnerabilities. It is therefore essential for the transport business owners to chalk out a business plan at the very onset of the business to have clearly defined goals and a path way to navigate the ever changing face of the transport industry and the many challenges that the entrepreneur may face in the day to day operations of the business or in the long term.
About Transport Business Plan
Transport Business Ideas
Steps to form a transport business plan, faqs – transport business plan.
There are several business ideas or ventures that the entrepreneurs can take up in the transport industry. Some of the most common and profitable transport business ideas that have created a market for themselves and found many takers are mentioned below.
- App Based Taxi Services
- Car Shuttle services
- Outstation car rental services
- School bus or taxi/van services for school going children
- E-Rickshaw services
- Courier services
- Grocery transport services
- Truck transport services
- Passenger bus services
- Medical emergency transport services
- Non-medical transport services
- Packers and movers services
- Travel agency
- Bicycle rental services
- Livestock transportation
- Air transport services
- Airport transport services
- Marine shipping
- Shipping and small boat services
- Milk carrier transport services
The basis of a successful business plan for a transport business is usually the same as any other business plan where the entrepreneur has to first identify which type of transport business is best suited to him/her and the current market scenario. After that, another important initial step is to set up the objectives and the goals of the business and start from there.
Following are the details of a successful transport business plan
Selecting a business venture
As mentioned above, the starting point of any business is to select the type of business venture to be pursued. This selection is based on various factors like the capabilities of the entrepreneur, capital investment that needs to be made, current market scenario, availability of driver partners, licenses and permits, etc.
Collecting information about the business
The key to any successful business is the abundance of information. Information relating all the aspects of the business whether small or big is necessary for the smooth functioning of the business organizations. In case of a transport business, the entrepreneur has to gather all the necessary information relating to the permits (interstate transport or permits specific to the goods being transported), labour or driver’s union laws, competitors and their policies as well as pricing, background check for the driver partners, their licenses and their past record with preferably at least one or more references. Such information will ensure laying down of necessary guidelines that the business can rely on to handle any day to day issues as well as any unusual or extraordinary situations and navigate them efficiently.
Getting proper licenses and permits in place
After collecting all the necessary information and setting the general layout of the business, the entrepreneur will have to then secure the necessary permits and licenses to run the business. These permits will include intrastate transport or national permit as the case may be as well as registration of the vehicles for commercial purposes. As per the law, a vehicle registered for personal use cannot be used for commercial purposes. Hence, the entrepreneur has to get the necessary permits and registrations under the prevailing Acts for the validity and the legality of the business. Business persons can seek professional help in this regard to ease out the process and not miss out on any necessary permits. This process will also involve getting necessary permits for the driver partners and ensuring that their licenses are up to date to avoid any unnecessary outcomes or situations.
Purchase of vehicles
This is the most important aspect of the business as it will be the basis for the success or failure of the business. If the vehicles purchased are not in line with the purpose or idea of the business then the entity may face many problems like not meeting the target scale of operations, unnecessary wastage of fuels or over expenditure on fuel cost, etc. The purchase of vehicles has to thus be in line with the purpose or nature of the business. For example, if the business is to transport persons, the entrepreneur can purchase small cars or SUVS if it is a taxi service business or buses if the business is a school bus business or travel agency or intercity/interstate travel business. If the business is of transport of goods, the entrepreneur can purchase trucks or tempos (big or small) depending on the scale of operations and the nature of goods to be transported.
Insurance of the vehicle is a mandatory requirement as per the law. If the vehicle is not insured or if the insurance is not up to date, the vehicle can be seized or can be liable for a penalty. Also, ensure that the vehicle is insured for any losses or damages that may occur to the vehicle in the event of any accident. Many entities in the business of transporting goods take blanket insurance or an extra insurance for the goods being transported to cover for the damages to the goods due to any accident or theft.
Tracking of vehicles
Tracking of vehicles is of utmost importance in any transport business. This will not only ensure the safety of the persons or the goods that are being transported but also prevent anti theft or misuse of the vehicles that are registered under the business name. With the advancement in technology, entrepreneurs can easily track their vehicles no matter what part of the country they are in as well as contact the drivers immediately in case of any queries or change of destination or delivery point.
The entrepreneur will then have to employ the necessary workforce to keep the business running. Some of the workforce involved in the transport business is highlighted hereunder,
- Maintenance staff for the upkeep and repair of the vehicles
- Accounts personnel
Marketing and promotion of the business
Marketing and promotion are an important aspect of any business. It enables the entrepreneur to reach the right customers as well as get more potential customers. The entrepreneurs can come up with some unique ways like discount coupons, free rides, monthly passes, additional amenities like free wifi or tie-ups with cinema halls or movie booking sites or malls/resorts/hotels, etc. for promoting and marketing their business and ensuring customer loyalty.
1. What are the various types or modes of transport?
- Water transport
- Air transport
- Pipelines transport
2. What is the cheapest mode of transport?
Water transport is traditionally the cheapest mode of transportation apart from railways.
3. What is the most flexible mode of transport?
Roadways are the most flexible mode of transport.
4. Does transport business refer to only transportation of goods?
No. Transport business is not only the transport of goods but also includes transport of persons.
5. Can a person get loans for starting a transport business?
Yes. Entrepreneurs can get many easy and affordable loans for starting a transport business under the MSME sector.
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How to Start a Car Transport Business
- Business — Everything You Need to Know
Starting any new business is both hugely exciting and a great leap into the unknown, and the vehicle transport business is no different. Obviously, a basic knowledge of the industry is an absolute must for those looking to enter what is a very competitive field, but even for those who have worked in the transport game for a long time, setting up on their own in an industry they love can still be a potential minefield.
Identify the Need
Fail to prepare, prepare to fail, attract investment, get equipped, location is everything, contact and connect, cover your costs, license to thrill, prepare your papers, let the world know you’ve arrived.
On the plus side, the experience will definitely count in your favor when starting a vehicle transport company. With insider knowledge, you’ve already leveled the playing field. But be warned — the process of taking an idea off a drawing board and making it a reality takes serious planning and a lot of blood, sweat, and tears.
Yet fortune favors the brave, and rest assured, there is — and will be for a long time to come — a huge demand for a reliable and effective vehicle transport company that doesn’t promise the earth but delivers the goods realistically and affordably every single time.
Here at Logity Dispatch, we value the integral importance a vehicle transport business plays in keeping society firing on all cylinders and the economy in great shape. We have worked with some of the best in the field and are keen to help individuals who wish to start a car transport business, and to make the secure transportation of cars and vehicles from ‘A’ to ‘B’ as cost-effective, secure, and reliable as possible.
As specialists in the industry, we have seen the common mistakes and textbook errors that starting a vehicle transport business tend to make. With this in mind, we would like to offer our top tips on how to start a car transport business and make it a viable success.
Before embarking upon any business venture, you need to ensure there is a gap in the market that your vehicle business can exploit. Study and research the transport sector and potential competitors to identify any shortcomings.
- What areas are they specializing in?
- How much do they charge?
- What is their geographical range, and who is their target audience?
- And then the million-dollar question: could my business do any better?
Putting in the legwork at this stage will reap plenty of dividends further down the line. Researching the day-to-day operations of other vehicle transport businesses will help clarify the niche you want to exploit and the demand you want to meet. This will then help you avoid the mistake of attempting to compete in an already saturated market. You can find your state and research local laws here: https://www.usa.gov/states-and-territories .
You’ve checked out the competition. You’ve identified a need. You’ve got an idea, and you’re thinking big and ready to hit the ground running. But wait! A man without a plan is operating blind. So do yourself a favor and take the time to sit down and draw up a business plan laying out what you want to do, how you plan to do it, any potential obstacles that will be thrown your way, and how you’ll overcome them.
When you start a car hauling business, the devil is in the detail. You’ll need an in-depth marketing strategy, comprehensive and long-term financial projections, and a firm idea of what your long-term goals are. Setting down your ideas on paper is a great way to separate the wheat from the chaff, clarify your thought process, and find out what is feasible. It’s a golden opportunity to iron out any potential issues. Remember, what works on paper doesn’t always translate well into reality, so you’ll need to tweak your business plan as circumstances and market forces dictate.
Unless you’ve won the lottery, inherited a fortune, are closely related to your bank manager, or have a huge pot of cash leftover from a previous investment, then chances are you’re going to need some additional investment when it comes to getting your operation off the ground.
Starting a vehicle transport business is not cheap — you have to consider not only the initial outlay for vehicle costs but other essential overheads such as staff wages, insurance, and marketing as well. A well-thought-out and detailed business plan is key to attracting investors to your cause. You’ll need to convince them you’re a capable and resourceful individual and your business is both plausible and profitable. But if you’ve put together a credible business plan detailing how their investment will one day become a profit, you should have no worries.
Investors come in all shapes and sizes. Friends and family are often happy to lend a helping hand. Yet many in the vehicle transport business prefer to keep it strictly professional and ask a private investor on board in return for a small share of the equity. If you’d prefer to explore another option, then you could apply for a small business grant. It’s a lengthy process, but the payoff is more than worth it.
Naturally, if you’re planning to start a car hauling business, you’re going to need the right equipment for the job. You mustn’t try to cut corners when it comes to scouting around and picking the right haulers, towing trucks, winches, trailers, and everything else you’ll need to ensure starting a vehicle transport business runs as seamlessly as possible. Everybody loves a bargain, but make sure you shop around for quality products at prices that won’t batter the business’s budget. Talk to those in the know and do your research before making that all-important purchase.
We live in a digital era, so don’t forget that there is some high-grade transport management software on the market that could benefit your vehicle transport company. Such software is invaluable for lending a helping hand to the administrative side of your operations, and it covers everything from mapping routes to tracking mileage and tallying how many hours you spend on the road.
You’ve put your thinking cap on to write up your plan, you’ve put your bargaining hat on to source your equipment, and now it’s time to put your scout’s hat on and find the best geographical location for your business. First things first, the amount of space you’ll need will be dependent on the size of your fleet and how large your operation is. Remember, you’ll need adequate room for the unloading and loading of any haulers, and you’ll probably want a little space left over if you have any plans for future expansion.
Secondly, the choice of the exact geographical location of your vehicle transport business will be dependent on how accessible it is to the major routes and roads that allow you to conduct your business. You’re starting a vehicle transport business after all, and the highways and byways of the modern world will be your lifeblood.
Just as no man is an island, when you start a car transport business, you should not do it in complete isolation from other key players in the industry. Networking is the grease that keeps the wheels of commerce spinning around the clock. Everyone at some point needs a mentor, and if you can find someone who’s been there, done it, and brought the t-shirt with the legend ‘how to start a car hauling business’ emblazoned upon it, then don’t be shy about enlisting their help and expertise.
Additionally, reach out to anyone who works within the transport sector and see if you can come to a mutually beneficial arrangement. Social media is a great way to network, meet others, and learn from their experience. Make building your book of contacts and staying connected with as many other businesses as possible a golden rule. Who knows, when the time comes, it might be you that some young start-up comes calling on for a few sage words of advice.
No one likes to talk about insurance , but you will not be able to start a car-hauling business without it. Motor trade insurance ticks all the boxes concerning a vehicle transport business and is an essential safety net for all those little hiccups and unexpected calamities life has a habit of throwing your way. Standard motor trade insurance will take care of your business, your drivers, and your maintenance team. However, you need to have a sit-down conversation with an insurance company so they can assess your personal needs, draw up a few quotes, and find the right plan for you.
Like anything in life that’s worthwhile and takes a certain degree of expertise, you cannot start a car hauling business without the appropriate licenses . A vehicle transport business is required by law to possess a number of registrations and licenses before it can set up shop. Before you apply for a license, you need to register your business with the appropriate governmental agency. There is a lot of red tape and bureaucracy involved in the process, but the sooner you get the ball rolling, the better.
Just when you thought the avalanche of paperwork was over, we’ve some more bad news, so brace yourself. You need not only licenses when starting a vehicle transport business but also up-to-date certificates and documentation to get the show on the road. Here’s when you’ll need to definitely get some legal advice.
You’ll require contracts related to transporting vehicles as well as contracts for your employees. Dependent on how far afield you’re planning to operate, you may require international road haulage documents as well. Either way, a legal expert in this area will prove a definite asset when it comes to saving you from wading through unnecessary jargon and getting tripped up by various rules and regulations you didn’t even know existed.
The procedures have all been followed to the letter, the hoops have all been jumped through, the boxes have all been ticked, and the light is on the green when it comes to getting your vehicle transport business on the road. Your company might just be the best thing since sliced bread and what the world has been waiting for, but how’s the world supposed to know if you’re not going to advertise it?
Many individuals who start a car transport enterprise are guilty of overlooking the influence advertising and marketing can have on the success of this business. Don’t join their ranks. Know your niche from the get-go and vigorously target that audience. The printed press has a limited reach nowadays, but it’s still worth placing an advertisement. However, it’s an online presence you should be focusing on if you want some definite bang for your buck.
Social media can work wonders in placing your business in front of the eyes of those people most likely to use it, so do not be afraid to fully exploit the limitless reach of Facebook. With digital marketing platforms such as Google Ads, you can showcase your business to an audience of millions. Likewise, a well-put-together website will make a dynamic first impression on potential customers. The world has moved online, so don’t be afraid to move with it.
And so it looks like we’ve reached the end of the road, but if you adhere to the above tips, it should be the start of a long and exciting journey for your vehicle transport business. All of us here at Logity Dispatch wish you the very best in your endeavor and look forward to working with you at some point in the future.
Now, what are you waiting for? Get your motor running and head out on the highway. Good luck!
Helen is the best dispatch manager at logitydispatch.com. Takes first place in the local rating of employees for more than a year. Has been with us for over two years. Knows several languages, enjoys yoga and is great at jurisprudence. She started writing articles because she believes that knowing the legal aspects of the profession is as important as knowing how to drive a truck well.
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How to Start a Car Hauling Business
You’re a good company driver with a solid two-year record of dependability and over-the-road excellence. You’re also the type of person that can’t help but stare lovingly at the truck on the next lane, the one with the 7-car carrier and the neatly stacked array of shiny, colorful vehicles. Well, then you’ve come to the right place.
Do you dream of owning your own car hauling business? As a trucker with valuable experience in your back pocket, that dream could certainly be a reality. You already have an advantage from your years of safe driving. And we’re here to help you make that dream come true. So, we put together a checklist that leads you to owning your car hauling company.
A Checklist to Car Hauling Business Success
Getting your authority to start hauling cars is the same as getting your standard “for-hire” authority. Just make sure you have auto hauler elected as your commodity type. Don’t forget that part of the process of getting your operating authority is also about fulfilling all the federal and local/state legal requirements. The Apex Startup Program can help you with all the paperwork filings. We make it easy for you!
You’ll need a special car carrier trailer. Those are going to cost you. For example, a good condition used dry van would cost you approximately $20,000. By comparison, a good condition used 7-car hauler trailer would run you about $27,000. A brand new 7-car hauler trailer is in the $70,000 range.
As a car hauler, your load is high-value. That means more insurance coverage, especially cargo insurance. It’s standard for carriers and owner-operators to have $1 million in liability insurance and up to $250,000 in cargo insurance. An auto hauler will want to double that – $2 million in liability and at least $500,000 in cargo insurance. The key here is extra cargo insurance, as brokers and shippers will want to see more coverage to safeguard that valuable load.
How Do You Write an Auto Hauling Business Plan?
Write your business plan.
How do you write an auto transport business plan? The same way you write a business plan for all trucking companies. The same principles apply – Where will you network to find customers? What are your goals? How do you plan to grow? What do you project to be your company’s expenses and profits? How do you plan to build a successful auto hauling company? Apex can help you here, too. Download our “How to Write a Business Plan ” guide and watch our business plan videos for in-depth, step-by-step pointers.
Prepare for the Risk
Keep in mind that hauling seven or more cars can be good money. But with a bigger paycheck comes some bigger risks, one being that you probably won’t get paid right away. That’s where Apex freight factoring comes in. Factoring your auto hauling freight bills can alleviate the cash flow headache. Especially since in the auto hauling business under payment is common. If a car is damaged during the haul, or if there is a last-minute change in the number of cars you are contracted to haul – both can lead to under payment. For extra peace of mind, Apex offers credit checks on freight brokers .
“Car hauling by nature is riskier,” says Dax Johnson, Account Executive at Apex Capital. “You need to always pay attention to the weather, the driving conditions, and exactly where you are driving. All those things translate to potential damage on the autos. You always want to know who you are hauling for but pay extra attention in auto hauling because the risks are magnified.”
What to Read Next: Learn How to Make Money Hauling Cars
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With nearly 36.5 kilometers of roads being constructed in India every day, there is an increasing demand for efficient road transport across the nation. Today, the rapidly expanding roadways network in India provides a great opportunity for new entrepreneurs to invest in transport businesses. Transport businesses majorly include running taxis, auto-rickshaws, on-demand cabs, and commercial vehicles for intra-city and inter-state goods transport. With the demand for transport services rising by 10% annually, the transport business market is ripe for new entrepreneurs.
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Below, we will look at the basic steps towards creating a transport business plan and the various kinds of transport businesses that one can set up.
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Creating a Transport Business Plan in April 2023
- Choosing a Transport Business: Transport businesses can be broadly categorized into passenger transport and goods transport businesses. Passenger transport includes taxis and other commercial vehicles that are used to ply passengers and goods within villages, towns, and also between different cities and states. Freight or goods transport can also be within regional geographical locales or across cities and countries. Unlike passenger transport, goods or freight transport carries raw materials and ready-made goods for consumption, retail business or industries
- Getting to know the Business: Like any other business enterprise, one needs to conduct research to understand the feasibility and profitability of a business enterprise. Since this may vary regionally, one will need to understand the specification of the transport business market in the regions that one wants to operate in. This will include the fleet of vehicles that a business owner will have to invest in, the loan schemes available for setting up such a business, important and popular routes, and making business connections with already successful entrepreneurs in the transport business
- Registering the Transport Business: To set up any kind of transport business, one will require legitimate licenses for the transport personnel and vehicles that are registered for business purposes. Legitimate licenses are mandatory for the setting up and management of a transport business
- Investing in Transport Vehicles: While this may seem an obvious step, this needs meticulous research if the business has to succeed. While the first criteria of choice will be based on the nature of the business i.e. whether passenger or goods transport, one will further need to choose the appropriate kind of vehicles that will be practicable for the given context
- Insurance and Tracking Devices for Transport Vehicles: In the case of both vehicles for personal use or for business, vehicle insurance is mandatory. Today, however, there are also various tracking devices that can in fact prevent theft or help in the retrieval of stolen vehicles. Especially in the case of goods transport vehicles, one can also avail of extra insurance for goods that are being transported
Organizing the Business Team:
- Drivers: For passenger or freight transport businesses, the primary personnel is the drivers. All drivers need to be above 18 years with legitimate licenses and adequate driving experience supplemented by on-the-job training. In the case of freight transport, truck drivers should possess a commercial license for large vehicles
- Customer Care Executives and Accountants: Like any business, a professional customer care department is important for an efficient and smoothly operating transport business. The business will also need a good accounts team that can efficiently manage income and expenditure balances
- Advertising the Company: Over and above the necessary logistics and research in order to set up a transport business, one of the most important components of setting up a successful transport business is a strong advertising campaign to promote the business
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Transport Business Options
In rural and urban India, there exists a complex system of public and private transport services constituted of a variety of motor vehicles such as auto-rickshaws, taxis, buses, and trucks catering to a wide demographic. These systems are distributed across a range of services such as public transport, on-demand conveyance, freight transport, and healthcare. Below are some of the transport services and transport business options that new entrepreneurs can invest in,
- Taxi Service: Taxi service is one of the most lucrative transport business options these days. While a large portion of this market has been captured by ride-hailing and ride-sharing businesses like Ola and Uber, a large population continues to use private taxi services for intra-city, inter-city, and inter-state travel. With fast-expanding digital networks creating large data networks between entrepreneurs and consumers, a taxi business can be a highly profitable enterprise.
- Bicycle Rental: While motor vehicles provide quickness, they are also environmentally unsustainable. With increasing awareness regarding ecological sustainability, many people today seek to use modes of transport that are less polluting and also offer the chance towards a healthier lifestyle. Owing to this, one can also consider bicycle rental services as a viable and profitable transport business alternative.
- Freight and Logistics Services: Freight transport is possibly one of the oldest transport services and has changed only in form, owing to better motor vehicle technology and larger digital networks. Since it was and continues to remain absolutely necessary for a variety of business enterprises, freight transport services are one of the most profit-making transport business options.
- Specialty Transportation: Specialty transportation can be considered as a subset of freight or goods transport where one can devise specialized transport services for specific industry needs such as the transport of huge industrial machines, large mechanical components such as airplane parts, windmills, etc. It also includes other specialized services such as modular houses, perishable frozen items, human organs, etc.
- Livestock Transportation: Livestock is a primary component of many manufacturing industries and forms an important part of the supply chain for these enterprises. Livestock is also more vulnerable than other kinds of goods and this demands specialized kinds of transport services that can be tapped into by new entrepreneurs in the transport business.
- Healthcare Transportation: Healthcare transportation can include ambulance services for medical emergencies and emergency services for road accidents etc.
Logistics and transport business requires a lot of investment and to carry out that investment business owners should be well aware of all the necessary information required to start a new business. Therefore, it is highly recommended to frame a detailed transport business plan to make a base for your business to further grow and flourish.
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Top tips on starting a vehicle transporting business
Research competitors, make a business plan, get the correct licences.
Choose the best insurance cover
Raise the capital, up-to-date documentation, decide on a location, source your equipment.
Get a quote.