We’re sure you’ve noticed that the load boards have gotten crazy recently. The spot market rates are normally over contract rates. But instead, this summer, the world looks like it’s turned upside down. Is there a way that you can make a living in the trucking industry? When you need to fix your trucking business, here’s an idea that might not look profitable: developing a niche trucking business.
Niche Trucking Business
A niche trucking business is a trucking company that specializes in hauling specific types of loads. Often these loads require a specific type of trailer, not a dry van.
While dry vans have the most flexibility in the types of loads they can carry, they also are the most common type of trailer out there. We all know that the law of supply and demand say that where there’s a lot of supply, the value drops. When the supply is small, the price goes up. So making the decision to buy a less flexible trailer might look like a bad decision, it can be exactly the opposite.
Specializing Makes More Money
Getting the equipment and training to haul specialized loads looks like a big up-front expense. But the higher rates that shippers will pay for those loads to be hauled will cover those costs.
For example, oversized loads.
Oversized loads, whether wider or heavier, require special handling. No one wants to let a newbie handle a load of steel through the hills of West Virginia, do they? Some of those turns require experience and a strong understanding of physics not to tip over. That experience, that know-how, and that equipment can command higher pay because there’s not a lot of competition from other truckers.
It’s not always about the ability to drive. Permits. Awareness of where and when you can drive and where you can stop.
Hauling boxes and pallets makes money. Hauling specialty loads makes more.
How do you decide?
Investigate your Investment First
What’s going on in the transportation world? Find your niche in the market by looking at the load boards. Compare what you’re getting per mile with what loads in the niche are currently paying. Sometimes looking at where you live might give you some ideas how to find your niche. Who’s shipping out in your area? Where are they going? What are they shipping? We have several steel mills in our area, so the oversized load carrying steel is a very lucrative niche in Ohio.
Getting the training you need might not be as expensive as you think. Don’t think of it as an expense – think of it as an investment to help you decide what to do.
Next, think about leasing a trailer before you buy one. Talk to other truckers who have some experience with your niche. Get more than one opinion. It could be a bad day for one trucker, and a great day for another. then there’s always YouTube for videos to get more ideas.
Company Overview Report
Once you get started, you’re going to want to know how you’re doing. We recommend the TruckingOffice PRO Company Overview Report. Our report shows you the Trucker Stats™ that will give you the information you need to know what’s working for you.
Any changes will have a hard start. It may take time to see what’s working.
Don’t wait till you’re in trouble – let the Company Overview Report help you manage and monitor your Trucker Stats™.
Give TruckingOffice PRO a chance to help you find new successes in your trucking career. We’ve got a free trial for you to check out TruckingOffice PRO now. Sign up today for your chance to see what we can do for you.