If you have previous experience working within the shipping industry and have also wanted to one day own a business, you might have already thought about starting an independent shipping company. Starting a business can be a wonderful experience that offers many challenges and a lot of job satisfaction. You will also have more control over how you can do things, putting into practice some ideas you might have had that your previous employers weren’t interested in implementing. In addition, you can create a brand that customers know to be reliable and one that they want to remain loyal to. Yes, starting an independent shipping company could be an exciting new venture for you, and if this is something you’re passionate about doing, here are a few tips to help you get started.
Research and Plan
Just because you have previous experience in this industry doesn’t mean you have all of the correct knowledge to set up an independent company. While this experience will certainly benefit you, you will also need to understand things like employment law if you’re going to hire staff, what kind of insurance you will need, understanding how to file corporate taxes, as well as any other legal obligations you must follow as a business owner. You’ll also need to understand marketing basics and how to incorporate your business with the relevant authorities. This is why before you do anything else, you must carry out intensive market research to help you build your shipping company’s brand and understand how to reach your core demographic and beyond. Finally, you will need to use all of this research to help you write a sensible, realistic business plan for your company, and this will be used to help you secure a business loan from either a bank or a private investor.
Even if you haven’t officially begun trading yet, sending the feelers out regarding clients is a good idea. Without them, your shipping company will struggle, so you need to make sure you have some jobs set up straight away so that you aren’t going to fall behind on your bills or pay staff wages. You might already have connections from your previous jobs in the industry, but you can also source shipping jobs via websites that allow you to browse thousands of available jobs posted by customers where you can compete with other shipping companies to get hired. You should also have a company website where clients can discover you as well and book directly with you.
If you aren’t promoting your shipping business effectively, then you will simply not reach enough customers to allow your business to flourish. You should always set aside a good portion of your budget to go towards marketing and promotion, and hiring a marketing agency to help you develop your strategies will be worthwhile, too. Not only will this allow you more time to work on client relationships and other essential tasks in business management, but they will have better resources and know-how on how to create excellent campaigns and convince customers to try your shipping company.
A lot goes into starting a business of any kind, but if you want your shipping company to be a success, remember these key points to help you get the ball rolling.