A courier service is a great way to help others, while making nice money for yourself. Couriers provide an important service, delivering documents and items across town, which eases the stress on people and keeps businesses running smoothly. Best of all, you can start an errand business for very cheap. In fact, you can start one with just $500. Here’s how:
First, let’s take care of the legal side of things. It’s important to decide your legal structure. Is your courier service business a sole proprietorship, partnership, or limited liability company (LLC)? You’ll pay different taxes based on which one you choose. You also need to license your business and get a federal tax identification number. Check with your state for their rules and regulations.
Next, let’s look into insurance. Once again, check with your state to see if there is any special insurance needed because you are using your vehicle for commercial purposes. You should also look into business liability insurance. You want to be protected in case of a claim or lawsuit.
Okay, now that we have all that legal stuff out of the way, let’s start having some fun. First, you need to decide a name for your business. You want something fun and memorable. Make sure it’s not currently being used by someone in your area, and that someone hasn’t trademarked it already. Consider putting your town in your company’s name or your personal name. “Bernie’s Courier Service” or “Cedar Falls Errand Service.”
Now let’s look into the tools you’ll need. There are three ones that are necessary, which you probably already have. You need a reliable vehicle, in particular a car, truck or van. A larger vehicle means you can carry larger items. Next you need a cell phone and computer. These two things will be how you do most of your business and record keeping. You have to have them.
In addition to those three essential items, there are a few you should consider, that could greatly improve your courier business. First, you should think about getting a GPS unit. This will make it easier to find your way around town. A GPS unit is also safer than using a map in traffic. Next you’ll want some business cards. Free ones are available from Vistaprint.com You just have to cover the cost of shipping. After that you’ll probably want a day planner or some way to keep track of your schedule and clients. You want to stay organized and on top of all your jobs.
Want to put an advertisement right on your vehicle? Then consider getting a magnetic sign. You can get one for $60 from Vista Print. You put them right on the side of your car, and it’s a 24-hour-a-day advertisement.
You’ll occasionally encounter heavy loads, so you might want to purchase a hand truck. It can make moving large loads much easier. Get one that can handle up to 300 pounds. And don’t forget about moving blankets. You might have to haul fragile items, so you want to be sure you can keep the items safe.
This might sound like a lot of items, but it really isn’t. You can gather them all up in a day or two, no problem. Make a list and get started. Plus, they shouldn’t cost you a lot. You can get all these items for around $500. Soon enough your courier service will be up and in business.To learn more, read How to Start a Courier Business.