Running a small business has several challenges. You will need to look after your contractors, employees, and customers and meet their expectations. When creating a local business, one of the best ways of differentiating yourself in a competitive market is offering local deliveries. However, this solution is not always cost-effective, therefore, you need to consider all your options carefully to avoid reducing your profit margin significantly. Below you will find a few tips on how to decide on whether or not to offer local deliveries to customers.
The Area You Cover
The first thing you must consider is the area you cover. If your business creates custom curtains, offering delivery and installation is a no-brainer, but you must make sure that you incorporate the costs in your pricing, or your fuel costs might spiral out of control. If you, however, create unique flower pots, and sell nationwide or statewide, you might be better off using a professional delivery service to save time and money. Try to streamline your delivery process to suit your needs and your customers’ expectations.
Drivers providing delivery services often need a higher level of insurance, and your commercial vehicles will need to be regularly maintained. At the same time, liability insurance when entering the customers’ home can increase your operational costs. You need to look into your state’s regulations and calculate the total cost of offering delivery locally before making a final decision.
Compare Commercial Contracts
If you want to focus on creating products, and don’t have time to spare, you might want to engage a local delivery company to take care of your orders for you. There are several online tools allowing you to compare ongoing contracts, but it is always a good idea to contact delivery companies yourself, and ask for a personalized quotation before you commit to a long term contract.
If delivering your goods or products poses an extra safety hazards on your employees, your costs can skyrocket. Delivering chemicals and pills, valuable items require a specialist approach, and it is better to be left to professionals. You don’t want to endanger your employees’ health. Complete the risk assessment, and make sure that you comply with federal and state regulations.
Time Spent on Deliveries
It is also important that you minimize the time spent on each delivery. Talk to your employers and train them on reading traffic alerts and using the satellite navigation screen. You might also want to look at http://www.sertica.com/ to find out whether or not you would benefit from a logistic and fleet tracking system that helps you keep an eye on your delivery times and costs.
Whether you are a small florist or run a home furnishing store, sooner or later you need to make a decision whether or not you want to offer local deliveries for customers. You can take care of deliveries in-house, or get a professional company to take care of them, so you can focus on the work at hand, and growing your business.