Among the biggest challenges for owner-operators is to find the right loads that are profitable and meet your intended schedule and needs. This can be tough, and can be a leading cause of small trucking businesses failing.
The first thing you should avoid is thinking strictly about loads. This is short-term thinking at best, and won’t help you establish a long-term business strategy for your business after becoming an owner-operator.
You could start off with load boards, where there are plenty of opportunities to check out. However, it’s important to expand your scope and look beyond just these load boards when landing profitable trucking contracts.
It’s the long-term trucking contracts that you want to find, which will provide you with reliable business for many years, and will help you expand and grow your business. Stop for a moment and visualize what your ideal client looks like. You need to be highly selective and picky about whom you work with in order to grow a successful trucking company.
Consider the following traits to help determine the right client to work with:
- Freight brokerage versus large shipper
- Quick-pays offers
- Regularly requires your services
- Pays well
- Ships to destinations that are convenient for you
Consider checking out industry groups that your potential clients are members of, which can be easily found on the Internet. You can find potential clients and contracts in these resources.
Of course, once you’ve landed the right contracts, continue to be a reliable service so that you make sure to keep those good clients of yours.