How To Start A Moving Company
It seems these days that the term” business” is being used by everyone as we are moving into a society where folk is more open to starting their own. Anyone with a slight entrepreneurial mindset can see some of the more common and successful businesses stem from practical needs. The need for physical moving services has remained a profitable business idea because there will always be people that need assistance in that manner daily.
This article will detail for you how you should go about creating a moving business from the ground up. You may be surprised to find that though it is a job of manual labor, there are a lot of information and clerical issues to be handled to see your business to complete fruition. However, it is a business that has low start-up costs (especially if you own a proper vehicle already) with flexible hours and good hourly wages.
Do Not Skip Through Steps
If you want to have a legitimate business then you must not skip through the proper process. You may look at the optics of a moving business and feel that it is as simple as getting people to hire you to help them move. Truth is, you can take that route, but it will be tough to have it last long term or grow to its fullest potential if you do not take action to properly plan and get the appropriate permits.
All businesses regardless of the focus of it can benefit from some assistance from an app like Persona. This app is backed by Stripe Payments and Goldman Sachs, so there is no reason to worry about credibility. As for the features of the app, we can start with their hassle-free scheduling which allows your clients to schedule your specific services for a date and time that matches your availability. Clients are also able to pay for their booking or subscription to your service through a secure site generated by the app. The app is 100% digital, taking away the need for you to have to use any pen and paper or track your numerical information.
A business such as a moving company can greatly utilize Persona for all its features because when you have less to worry about such as scheduling, you can focus on progressing your business in other areas. If you have a business it would behoove you to download Persona, today.
Pick Your Specialty
It can seem like an obvious option to try to offer every service possible when you are first starting your business. However, doing something like that can lead to your detriment because it will undoubtedly become difficult to navigate. For example, you may do a certain type of move one day but not have the manpower or vehicle availability to do so the day directly after. Instead, you should pick one niche and focus on it until you have mastered it.
Another reason to focus on a solo specialty is that you have to spend much more money upfront to handle all that will come with spreading yourself so thin. The equipment necessary and legal aspects you will need to key in on will be overwhelming.
Lastly, if your business has a niche or specialty you can find a customer base more simply. A targeted focus makes your business more searchable and relevant. Remember you can always add more aspects to your business as it grows.
Choose A Business Structure
In the beginning for any legitimate business, you have to set up a formal structure. The four business structures to choose from are:
- Sole proprietorship: Provides the most flexibility to owners, but also includes the greatest amount of liability and personal responsibility.
- Partnership: Includes two distinct options for a general and limited partnership, in which certain factors dictate who is responsible for business debts.
- Corporation: Separates one’s financial obligations from the business itself, and protects owners from business losses should they occur.
- Limited Liability Company (LLC): Establishes corporate liability protection but may also come with higher legal, filing, and start-up fees than the other structures.
Of course, you want to do your research, but do not neglect seeking out a financial professional to assist with advice in choosing the right business structure for yourself.
Legal and Tax Documents
In starting a new business of any kind, you want to check on what is the necessary paperwork and filing needed in your specific locality or state. Many local jurisdictions have specific licenses that you have to obtain before you can legally operate. These need to be taken care of before you begin to deal with customers.
Also, you should make sure to establish your federal tax status. Most importantly you need to have an IRS-issued EIN (employee identification number) which will allow your moving company to open bank accounts, file taxes, and receive appropriate recognition.
Purchase Moving Equipment
As we have already mentioned you should start your business small. You do not need to go out and buy the largest truck(s) possible, instead, you can buy a small truck or van. Also, you will need to think about the cost of fuel. However, just for your information, if you are buying a moving truck straight out then you will need to register it with the Department of Transportation. Beyond that, you must think of the other necessities such as moving dollies, ropes, furniture belts, moving pads, moving boxes, and some wrapping and packing materials. Securing your business with these moving tools will give your inaugural customers a great first impression of how professional you are.
Insurance will also be a necessity to have with all of this equipment for both liability and cargo. Contact different insurance agencies to find the best rate for insurance coverage for damages, vehicles, and liability.
Advertise Your Services
You should begin marketing your services as soon as you deem your business officially ready to launch. There are quite a few ways that you can get creative using a wide variety of tools to help market yourself. Some of the ways you can market your business are:
- Running paid ads on Google or social media
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Marketing on social media channels
- Local print ads
- Word-of-mouth and personal referrals
Also, you want to make sure your moving company has a unique but marketable name. As well as a great logo, that should be printed and put on all marketing, even employee work attire. Lastly, you want to have a great website because most people search online first and it can potentially become your number one source of business.
Remember that if any of these tasks are beyond your abilities to complete then you can hire professionals that specialize in marketing to help you out.
Mistakes to Avoid
Although we are all human beings and are naturally inclined to make mistakes or poor judgment calls from time to time, you want to limit them as much as possible. You are likely only a few bad reviews from having your reputation tarnished, especially when you are just starting. Here are some mistakes to avoid:
- Spreading your resources too thin: Only commit to the jobs that you can handle. As the owner, you should always be wary of the employees’ availability as well as the equipment and transportation. Turning down an opportunity is better than not being able to complete a job that you’ve committed to.
- Providing inadequate training: Failure to provide staff with proper training can lead to costly mistakes. All parties within the company should be trained in proper procedures, safety skills, and customer service.
- Lacking good policies and procedures: Think ahead about how your company will handle unforeseeable situations such as accidents, lost items, and other service interruptions.
Tips to Acknowledge
Beyond advising you on the mistakes that you can make, we want to provide you with some tips that will help your moving company succeed long term. Thus the following are tips that can be utilized:
- Obtain moving training: The art of moving “things” can seem like there would not be a need for any skill besides the ability to lift and put down. However, there is a need to learn proper packing, loading, and how to move most efficiently. These aspects will set you apart from your competition and impress customers.
- Obtain sales training: Proper sales techniques will come in handy as your business begins to grow and will teach you how to book more jobs which will, in turn, raise your profits.
- Secure a warehouse if offering storage: At times customers will be looking for a moving company that can help them in this regard, thus if you are going this route you need to secure a space. Warehouse storage spaces will cost you so definitely add to your budget.
- Take good care of customers: Customers should be able to have all their questions answered and needs taken care of, if possible because it will reflect well on the business. Once customers are satisfied with your service, they will begin to spread the word about it in their communities and social groups and that benefits your business. Repeated customers and referrals make a big percentage of a lot of established moving companies’ profits.