How Do I Start a Courier Business?

Tara Barnett

Starting a courier business is somewhat complicated because many businesses find that their needs are fulfilled by one of the many large courier companies. Even so, it is still possible to start a courier business that meets a niche need or acts as a larger company that promises precise service. Generally, the steps for starting this kind of business are the same as for any other business and involve thinking about taxes, licenses, and other business problems common to most industries. The problem with attempting to start a courier business once all the general legal aspects are out of the way is getting clients and improving on a logistical model that has in many ways reached peak efficiency.

Starting a delivery service business requires purchasing trucks and dollies as well as hiring delivery drivers.
Starting a delivery service business requires purchasing trucks and dollies as well as hiring delivery drivers.

In order to start a courier business, you must first get all financial and legal problems out of the way. This means that you must typically start by researching all relevant laws in your area. A special license may be required to run this type of business, and if you use drivers, they may need to obtain special qualifications. Start-up money must be established beforehand, but depending on the scale of the business, this may not be a very large amount.

Logistic considerations are often a major problem when attempting to start a courier business.
Logistic considerations are often a major problem when attempting to start a courier business.

To start a courier business that has an edge on the competition and thus the capacity to succeed, you must offer something different and better than other courier companies. One way to do this is to work specifically with a niche market with an established client base within a relatively small area. Another great way is to offer a specific type of transportation for items, such as environmentally friendly delivery. If you cannot compete with the breadth of larger companies, you must necessarily be better in terms of service, quality of delivery, and other types of emotional appeal.

Logistic considerations are often a major problem when attempting to start a courier business. Thinking about your delivery plans mathematically can be helpful, but generally you will have to hire a specialist in order to truly maximize efficiency. This type of courier business is often quite complicated and will involve coordination of multiple employees.

Deliveries within a single city are often the most manageable for a business that is just starting out, and one way to improve on the quality of service provided is to offer technologically enabled tracking. Clients who know specifically where their product or letter is are usually pleased by the security this knowledge provides. You might even offer a tracking application, which can be both useful and entertaining. In order to start a courier business that will have a competitive edge, you must think creatively about ways to be better than the big companies without losing profits.

Courier drivers may be required to obtain special qualifications.
Courier drivers may be required to obtain special qualifications.

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Discussion Comments

anon941337

Should the courier company be a subsidiary of the larger company? In addition to being a subsidiary, should the company also be an LLC for insurance risks?

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