Freight brokerage is a business that connects a manufacturing company that has goods needing transport with a carrier company that actually ships the goods to the consumers. This business serves as the go-between for the manufacturers, transporters and customers, with the end result being a quick and efficient transfer of goods from the factory to the store shelves. Brokers do the legwork as far as finding compatible manufacturing and transporting companies and getting them together to get the job done while earning a commission in the process. The best way to begin in the freight brokerage industry is to work in the industry, work for an already-established brokerage, and learn everything you can about the business before attempting to go into business for yourself. Once you have learned from the bottom up how the business works, you will be well on your way to a successful business of your own. Plus, you will likely go into your own business already having the contacts you need to get started, which is necessary in the brokerage business.
Choosing a Niche in the Brokerage Market
Brokerages pick a marketing specialty and provide the services necessary to supply for that particular consumer group. Once a broker has established a solid positive reputation in that narrow market, only then should the company attempt an expansion of the business to cover more territory in the consumer market. Choosing your area of expertise based on your immediate location, the available goods and available shipping companies from that location is one easy way to determine where you should begin in the brokerage business. It is also the broker’s job to determine which shipping services are the most reliable, efficient and affordable, and establish those carriers as part of your team. The more successful you are at picking a carrier, the more successful your business will become with more and more work coming your way thanks to word of mouth from satisfied customers.
The Basic Equipment Needed
A freight brokerage business needs a certain amount of equipment in order to function smoothly, but it is recommended that the new business owner does not go overboard buying toys while starting up. You will require a computer with a printer and Internet access, a copier and a fax machine, (often you will find both devices in one machine), and a telephone equipped with voice mail or an answering machine. It is good to also have your own email address as well for further communications. Freight brokering does not require a lot of office space, or even a space outside your home. Many brokers begin their businesses at home, while they establish their contacts. As the business grows, they establish themselves in a commercial building where they can hire employees and grow the business even further. This is an excellent way to begin, but it is by no means the only way. Many brokerage businesses get started in commercial offices, though this method does cost more initially.