The Profitable Trucking Company


May 27, 2009

How to make a profit in today’s trucking industry.

Are you asking yourself if you can really make a profit in trucking today, especially with fuel going up again and the freight still not recovering? That’s the 64,000-dollar question for most trucking companies.

I’d still say, yes, you can make a profit in trucking with planning, forethought, and using correct business principles. If you’re a small motor carrier, you should be looking for a specific niche in which to specialize. If you want to compete in the truckload side of the business, you have to provide something no one else is willing to do, and then do it better than anyone else could. Always charge a profitable rate for your services, too. You won’t ever compete on just price alone with the big trucking companies, because they can easily afford to undercut their competition’s rates.

There’s always a need for any size company which provides excellent customer service. So yes, you can be successful in trucking, as long as you make a plan, know your costs, and be sure your rates reflect those costs. Find and fill your niche and become the best in the lane you service. Don’t try to haul everything to everyone. Know your market; create strong relationships with your customers, and give them true commitment to their wants and needs.

You won’t succeed if you go into trucking for the one and only reason of making money. The true bottom line to being prosperous in the trucking industry has multiple parts:

  • Believe what you do helps create a better quality of life for you and your neighbors.
  • Think safety, not just your own, but everyone around you.
  • Become the expert in your niche market.
  • Know your customers, what makes them tick, their wants and needs, and concentrate on serving them beyond their expectations.
  • Know your costs, down to every nut, bolt, airline, paper towel and staple.
  • Set your rates to reflect your costs, including your salary.
  • Have a plan, one that includes your vision of achieving your goals.
  • Know when to say no and when to say yes.

There’s still profit to be made on the highway, by being the best driver and customer supplier ever. Maybe the real 64,000-dollar question is, how great a trucking company do you want to be?

Good loads and good roads, everyone.

Timothy Brady
©  2009