Updated on: June 24th, 2024

How to Start a Delivery Service Business? (a Beginner-friendly Guide)

Hire Professionals to Start an LLC for Delivery Service Business (from $0 + state fees)

The delivery services market is experiencing an unprecedented rise in demand as customers hunger for instant doorstep delivery. Digitalization has revolutionized the consumer experience, allowing them to access technology at the touch of a button.

If you are craving success for your delivery service, whether it’s online or offline, a few well-crafted strategies can take you to the top. Are you asking yourself “how do I begin my own delivery business?” Look no further! This guide provides all of the insight and guidance necessary to make sure that those aspirations become reality — with the market only expected to continue its upward trajectory in upcoming years, now is most certainly an opportune moment!

If you want to skip the hassle of starting an LLC for a delivery service business yourself, consider using professional help for the best price in the market:

As for any business, you will also need an LLC for your delivery service business. You can create one yourself easily by following our step-by-step guide on how to start an LLC.

What is a Delivery Business?

With the holiday season upon us, retailers are doing their best to win over their customers by offering faster deliveries. As a delivery business’s role is pivotal in this regard- they transport essential items such as clothing, meals, medical supplies, and alcohol & beverages from the warehouse through distribution centers until it reaches its intended customer address. Depending on the type of order and charges involved for delivery; clients can opt for same-day delivery or next-day deliveries or regular delivery options.

Advantages of Starting A Delivery Service Business

  • Simplicity: Delivery businesses offer a wonderful opportunity for entrepreneurs who favor simplicity and efficiency. With just one objective — to get goods to customers in the most efficient manner possible — these types of companies are highly sought after by those who want to avoid complicated business structures.
  • Flexibility: As a business owner, the wide range of delivery models available grants you an abundance of flexibility. You can begin your own delivery service in one niche and eventually diversify or alter it entirely if desired. The trade secrets acquired from something as simple as package delivery can be applied to other areas such as food delivery with ease. With this kind of versatility, there is no stopping what you are capable of!
  • Scalability: A delivery business is a phenomenal option for those looking to break into the entrepreneurial world. You can start with low overhead costs and minimal investment while assessing your aptitude for this type of work, then scale up if you so choose. With its high consumer demand, boosting revenue potential by scaling operations is entirely possible!
  • Easy to control: If you’re looking for a serious business model that offers easy management and oversight, then the delivery industry is right up your alley. When first starting out with this type of enterprise, it’s likely that you’d be doing all the driving and delivering yourself. As demand increases though, Circuit for Teams comes highly recommended in aiding with operations supervision – like providing real-time tracking capabilities as drivers move around their respective routes.
  • Promotes independence: Launching a delivery business offers you the independence to design your working hours and conditions around your lifestyle. You don’t need to be limited by a nine-to-five desk job, plus you can become an independent contractor! And if that’s not enough, with each delivery being made autonomously in whatever vehicle of choice; you have the freedom of listening to whichever Spotify playlist takes your fancy whilst hitting the open road.

Pros and Cons of Starting Delivery Service Business

Here are some pros and cons that you should go through before starting your Delivery Service.

Pros

  • Starting a delivery service business can be an excellent way to make some extra income with relatively low overhead and startup costs. 
  • Delivery service businesses provide flexible hours and vary widely in efficiency, allowing owners to tailor the products or services they provide to their target market’s needs. 
  • With the right strategy, one could find themselves in the optimal position for generating more customers and repeat customers who depend on reliable shippers. 
  • The five major pros of starting a delivery service business are the ability to gain new customers quickly, better reliability for client orders, more efficient use of resources and specialized services, greater customer service satisfaction, and the potential for higher income.

All of these benefits come with important considerations but overall starting a delivery business can be highly lucrative and enjoyable.

Cons

Starting a delivery service business may sound like a great idea, however, there can be several downsides to starting a delivery service. 

  • One of the major cons is the amount of time and energy it takes to get your business up and running. 
  • You will have to do research on insurance policies, and build relationships with vendors, customer acquisition, and more before you start making profit. 
  • Another con is safety for the drivers; a driver who delivers has to sometimes go through sketchy neighborhoods which poses an inherent risk. 
  • Lastly, building up credibility and gaining trust in customers also takes as long as there is high competition with big companies that already have years of trust built up in their brand name.

 Despite these cons, launching a delivery service still remains an attractive option because of its potential upside if done successfully.


12-Step Guide on How to Start a Delivery Business

Planning to start your own delivery business? Knowing the key elements is essential for building your business structure for it from the ground up. Establishing a loyal customer base, creating an attractive pricing structure, and marketing your business are just some of the factors you must consider when starting out.

Here are a few simple steps that will get you on track:

Step 1: Define Your Niche

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To kickstart your delivery business, the very first step is to select a specific industry. Your decision will notably influence your own startup costs and other costs; however, there are two main types of deliveries that you should be aware of before making your choice. Let’s take a look:

Local Delivery Service

If you’re aiming to provide within a certain delivery zone with one or two zip codes, then launching a cargo van business is the perfect way to achieve that goal. Not only can you utilize your own vehicles, but also enlist contract drivers who have their own cars and are ready for delivery tasks. With local delivery service, businesses now have access to quick and efficient merchandise transport in no time!

Global Delivery Service

If you’re looking to send packages across continents, then international courier services are the perfect solution for you. With big names such as FedEx and DHL at your disposal, it’s never been easier to ship goods worldwide. However, if self-managed transport is more up your alley, then consider investing in a storage space box truck, for trucks and obtaining CDL driver licenses along with truck routing software.

Unique Delivery Business Examples

If you’re looking for ways to offer exceptional service and address customer pain points, here are three unique delivery businesses that could be the answer:

Food delivery: 

By partnering with neighborhood restaurants and chefs, you can deliver meals to their customers while giving them an incomparable experience. Rather than relying on popular platforms like DoorDash, centering your business around your local area is a surefire way to ensure customer satisfaction!

Late night delivery: 

By specializing in after-hours orders, you will only need to deliver items between 6 pm and 8 pm or later. This provides the perfect opportunity for you to devote time on each order with special care and attention.

Pharmacy delivery: 

Give the local pharmacists a break by providing them with your delivery services. Not only will this reduce their anxiety, but it can also help elevate your customer base at the same time!


Step 2: Build a Delivery Business Plan 

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Crafting a business plan is essential to any company desiring success. With one in place, you are able to track progress and make necessary adjustments to increase profits.

Here are some must-haves for your business planning structure:

  • It is essential to keep a close eye on your finances and allocate appropriate budgets.
  • Furthermore, you should research the market and its competitors in order to establish applicable marketing strategies that align with your business objectives.
  • As for the pricing structure related to delivery services, it must be determined according to its worth.
  • Challenges are bound to arise; however, taking time now to plan ahead will ensure smooth daily operations down the road.
  • Hiring employees and delivery drivers as well as providing them with necessary training round out this checklist of crucial steps towards launching an effective service-based business!

Step 3: Develop a Delivery Process

Crafting a stellar delivery plan is crucial for achieving customer satisfaction. This process involves setting up an ideal delivery route, loading packages onto the driver’s vehicle, and ultimately delivering them to their doorstep. To ensure every successful endeavor, here is a step-by-step breakdown of the standard delivery process:

Optimizing routes 

When it comes to launching a new business, manually plotting routes can be both labor-intensive and tedious for delivery drivers. Even with just 20 stops on the agenda, this approach can take its toll. That’s why utilizing advanced technology for optimizing your route is so important; not only does it alleviate stress from your drivers but also helps them make timely deliveries as you expand orders over time.

Monitoring routes

Without proper monitoring, you and your customers may face significant consequences. For example: You’ll have to guess which driver is available for a reroute due to canceled or additional orders when calling them manually.

Similarly, without route tracking, both of you must call the driver in order to get an accurate ETA – all of which can delay the delivery process further. With real-time route monitoring however, you’re able to be sure about your drivers’ status while they are within their assigned routes; providing peace of mind for yourself, multiple drivers and your clients alike!

Accomplishing last-mile delivery

The last stretch of any delivery process is the responsibility of your driver, who must deliver packages secure and undamaged parcel to its customer. With customers expecting on-time arrival with zero damage, it’s important that you plan for a smooth journey from beginning to end.

A route optimization solution will help drivers stay organized and on track so they can make more deliveries in one day. Furthermore, utilize an electronic delivery proofing system to document each order accurately – this way everyone stays updated throughout the entire process!


Step 4: Develop Your Delivery Service Business as A Legal Entity

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An essential step in the process of setting up your delivery business is registering it as a legal entity. Before you do this, have an idea of what to name your business and design its logo. You may choose a legal business entity from a Limited Liability Company (LLC), corporation, or partnership depending on the specific needs of your company; for help doing so that ensures all terms are fully understood, consider consulting with a qualified lawyer familiar with these matters.



Step 5: Register for Taxes, Permits, and Licenses

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Before you kick off your delivery service, make sure to acquire the necessary state licenses and permits in order to prevent penalties or other catastrophic consequences. Additionally, don’t forget that collecting sales tax on services is also a must. To guarantee compliance with local regulations and licensing laws, connect with your county clerk’s office for additional information.

Alternatively, reach out to a helpful association listed in the SBA directory of small business resources that can provide support right away!


Step 6: Open a Business Bank Account and Business Credit Card

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Once you have your LLC or Corporation files in order, it’s time to open a business bank account for your delivery service. Doing so will allow you to differentiate between personal and business finances while protecting your personal assets too; plus, it makes accounting and tax filing much more convenient! Speak with someone at the local bank about specific banking details that may affect how you handle funds before settling on the best credit card solution catered to fit all of your delivery company needs.

Moreover, a business credit card would be extremely advantageous for your delivery company. Specifically, it can help keep personal and business loans and professional expenses separate by providing insight into all of the individual transactions made for your business. Furthermore, this type of credit card helps to establish and build a strong credit history in case you require any loans down the line.


Step 8: Get Business Insurance Policies 

To adhere to the law and safeguard yourself, you must acquire insurance for your delivery business. In the event of losses, it’s essential to have a safety net in place that will protect the business and personal finances, of your company.

There are many different types of policies commercial auto insurance available tailored for specific businesses, yet General Liability Insurance is usually ideal for small companies.

Furthermore, Workers’ Compensation Insurance can help cover part or all of an employee’s wages in adverse times – making it another great option!


Step 10: Equip Yourself with The Necessary Tools and Software

To ensure that your business runs smoothly and you make speedy deliveries, possessing the appropriate tools is essential. Here are a few of them according to what you need:

Delivery vehicles: 

For many businesses, investing in vans or trucks is a preferred method of transportation to complete their delivery operations.

Ratchet straps:

These tie-downs are essential for your staff members to safely secure large packages when transporting cargo.

GPS systems:

GPS systems revolutionize location tracking and make the drop-off service process effortless.

Fleet management software:

By leveraging fleet management software, you can easily keep an eye on your company’s automobiles. This revolutionary system provides crucial insights into geolocation data, vehicle diagnostics, and even more invaluable information to make sure that everyone is safe and secure.

CRM software:

Capitalize on your customer relationships with CRM! By leveraging this technology, you can store contact details, identify sales opportunities, plan marketing campaigns and keep track of service issues.


Step 11: Hire and Train Your Drivers

As the backbone of your business, choosing and training delivery drivers that meet customer expectations is crucial. Here are some points to keep in mind when selecting them:

  • When selecting drivers for your fleet, it is essential to consider the many elements that could affect their role.
  • Map out their responsibilities and shift schedules, indicating whether you are offering full-time or part-time employment based on your guidelines.
  • Ask about a valid driver’s license, clean driving records as well as other related details including familiarity with delivery regions and years of experience with relevant vehicles.
  • Additionally, inform them of payroll structures and incentives available when possible so they have all the information necessary to make an informed decision about joining your team.

To ensure that your business operations run smoothly, you must provide the necessary training to existing employees about company policies and how to be successful in their roles. This includes teaching them how to process orders, follow delivery maps accurately, optimize routes for parcel deliveries, and take proof of deliveries. With this education, they will have all the resources needed to become more productive members of your team!


Step 12: Market Your Business with Successful Branding

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To stay ahead of the competition and make a lasting imprint on your customers, start by creating an unforgettable business name, using vibrant colors and fonts that will capture onlookers’ attention. Moreover, designing a visually stunning logo is a crucial component to jump-start your business’s journey. With creativity being so essential for success in this arena, you must strive hard to differentiate yourself from others!

Tip: Maximize your brand’s reach by promoting it on a powerful website, delivery vehicles, social media platforms, and any other place that captures the attention of individuals. Don’t forget to market your delivery service in order to make more people aware of what you have to offer – after all, customers are essential for success!

  • Enhancing your website’s search engine optimization with targeted social media campaigns will not only generate leads but also give you insight into customer preferences.
  • Through marketing emails and message alerts, you can stay in touch with them about offers or services that might interest them. To make this process easier for your business, consider seeking help from a capable digital agency to set yourself apart from the competition and drive more traffic to your site.

Hire Professional Help to Form an LLC for Delivery Service Business

It can be quite difficult and time-consuming to form an LLC all by yourself.
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Conclusion

Establishing a new delivery business carries with it certain inherent risks and business expenses, yet offers immense opportunity for revenue when customers are kept satisfied.
Indeed, the legal process itself is not that hard or complicated. But the hardest part will be to find long-term delivery contracts with your customers.


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