|Small Business Guide - Small Business Resources
(Add to Favorites | View All Articles | Resource Directory)
Starting a business transporting pets
How to Start a Pet Transportation Business
Pet Transportation Services are needed as the number of pets in the U.S. has grown tremendously over the past few decades. According to the U.S. Pet ownership and Demographics sourcebook, there are an estimated 60 million dogs and 70 million cats in American homes today. Apart from that, households which own pets have been recorded to spend 36% more in 2001 as compared to 1996. With this, owning a business that caters to the pet market, including a pet transportation service has lots of potential for healthy growth.
This is due to the fact that many Americans move around the country yearly and thus would require pet transportation services to move their pets as well. On a smaller scale, pet transportation services can also cater for local residents who require these services to transport their pets to and from the vet, within a local area or even to the crematorium for pets which have died.
Start Up Costs and Financing Sources:
Starting a pet transportation business really depends on the scale that you want your business to be. If you want to start on a smaller scale, all you really need is probably a pickup truck that has been modified to be safe and suitable for the transport of animals. Of course, you will need to set up an office or operate from your home with just a telephone, email and a fax machine. All of these will cost you less than $20,000.
On a larger scale, especially when you are considering cross border transportation, you will probably need to invest on a larger truck that can accommodate a few pets at the same time. Apart from that, the insides of the truck will need to be made suitable, safe and clean for pets, with adequate ventilation and cleaning facilities. In order to make this business viable, you may need to quickly expand your business to include sales agent offices in various locations. This way, you can build up business volume in order to increase profitability. All of these may cost you anywhere from $200,000 to $500,000 in initial start up costs.
Financing can be obtained from investors who may be interested in the potentials of such a business. Other than that, lending institutions such as banks can be approached to obtain a loan for the business. As with any business start-up, an impressive business plan must be developed for potential investors and financiers, indicating the potential growth as well as the estimated annual costs and revenue of the business.
Pricing Guidelines for Service:
The pricing strategy for a pet transportation service business fluctuates based on the fixed and variable cost of the business, as well as the nature of the service provided. Local transportation services may start with a minimum charge of $20 to $40 for the first 20 miles and an additional $10 for every 10 miles after that.
As for interstate transportation or transportation between cities, the distance between the origin and the destination will be the major price determinant. With this, prices may range from $100 and up, depending also on the size of the animal and the pet carrier.
Advertising and Marketing:
As you are targeting pet owners, the best marketing approach would to advertise in locations where pet owners would go. Reading material for pet owners as well as events that are attended by the same target group. Placing brochures within pet stores and probably awarding pet stores with commissions for every customer they recommend to you would be a good idea. Advertising in pet magazines or getting a write up on your services would be helpful. Of course, classified ads in the Yellow pages are a must in order to make it easy for customers to locate you.
Other channels of promotion would be participation as a vendor in dog shows or exhibitions. Doing this will help increase awareness on the existence of the business. Additionally, working with associations such as the American Kennel Association would create and improve visibility to pet breeders and pet store owners. Especially when you participate in events organized by these associations.
Launching a website and allowing potential customers to get instant price estimates from your website would also be a great idea.
This business requires a fair amount of equipment, in which the most important would be the vehicle that is used to transport the animals. Apart from that, other equipment such as crates, kennels and carriers may be required as some customers do not have these items with them. The size and usage of these crates must be according to the guidelines set by the Independent Pet and Animal Transport Association (IPATA).
Handlers and drivers will need to be employed to care for the animals while they are in transit. Other equipment required would be built-in sinks within the vehicle to allow for easy cleaning and water refills.
Recommended training, experience, or needed skills:
There is no extensive training required for a pet transportation service business. However, good and responsible drivers and animal handlers need to be engaged. It would be best if you have a background and experience in handling animals during travel so you can train your staff and ensure that they are handling animals in the correct manner. Apart from that, your staff must also know what to do if they encounter problems during the journey, and should also be equipped with the latest kennel and vet location information in case of emergencies.
Apart from that, the business owner must be well informed on all legal requirements pertaining to pet transportation. For example, there are IPATA guidelines on the size of crates and wire crates that are required by law. Moreover, all pets must be accompanied by an inter-state travel certificate that has been certified by a veterinarian.
The income potential of this business is dependent on how large the business grows to. A larger business with multiple offices and destinations will be able to sustain a higher sales volume. With this, the pet transportation business will be able to generate at least a six- figure income each year.
Pet owners, pet stores and animal breeders.
A pet transportation business requires investment and a passion for welfare of animals in order for it to be successful. As it is also a niche market, lots of marketing and advertising need to be invested into the business in order to create the awareness of the services.
© Copyright Randy Wilson, All Rights Reserved.
Randy has dozens of home based business articles at Profitable Home Businesses such as Start a Medical Billing Service.
News provided by Yahoo! News and Google News
The Credit-Card Survival Kit Your Small Business Needs (Infographic)
Small Business Q&A: Peter Cosgrave, CPL Recruitment
Small Business Economy Continues To Grow Modestly
Small Business Column: Time for Irish SMEs to take advantage
SurePayroll Small Business Scorecard(R): Small Businesses on the Hunt for New Hires
Business development centers help bolster local economy with free counseling, seminars
GST red tape hurting business, economy
GST burden killing small business
Are You Ready to Own and Operate a Business?
How often has someone thought of starting a business based solely on the fact they think it will be easier than working for someone else. Fact is, owning and operating a business can be one of the most grueling experiences you will have.
Don't be shy; tell your success stories
-- Building Credibility Through Success Stories --Successful solo entrepreneurs spend quite a bit of time building and expanding their networks. These networks can cover a broad spectrum - professional associations, community service, school or alumni networks, virtual communities, athletic groups, neighborhood associations.
Small Business - Big Business...Whats the Diff?
Small Business, Big Business - What's the Diff?Well a lot actually!I become frustrated and angry at the government's paying lip service to assisting small business. It appears as though all governments, bureaucrats and many accounting advisers do not know what a real small business is.
20 Great Ways to Market Your Business Locally
Whether your target audience is in your neighborhood or across the world, you can use your local resources to get the word out about your business. Your local community is easily accessible and provides dozens of opportunities for building a buzz about your product or service.
How to Compete with the Big Guns?!
Many small business startups fail within the first 2 years of existence. There are several different factors reason for the failure.
Finding the Right People for your Business
Where do you find the right people for a business relationship?Finding the right people may not be as difficult as you may think. Quite often they are in your neighborhood and within your inner circle.
Looking for a New Office Chair?
Perhaps you are building a new home office or you are redoing the one you have. Or, maybe you are looking for an office chair to replace that broken down model sitting in your office.
Presentations and Sales Automotive Detailers
Many auto detailers fall short in their sales presentations. I have often shopped the competition to see what their knowledge base was to gage their worthiness as a formidable competitor in the market place.
Small Business Checks - Money Saving Options
When you go into business for yourself, there are many things to consider. What you don't want to worry about is spending too much money on unnecessary items.
Lubbock TX Good Market for a Service Business
We very much like what we see in Lubbock, TX as a good place for a service business. The city is a very well designed and laid out town with growth in the 4-5% per year range, growth in the Northwest quadrant of the city is steady and good.
Never Burn a Bridge
Why should you always maintain a good report with a business even when you are parting ways?It is human nature to get mad and then rant and rave about what is not going well at work. Many of us spend time gossiping and socializing with the main topic of what the problems are and who is responsible.
Business Debt Collection Letter Writing Secrets
Debt collection letters--an overview"Debt collection letter" in the singular may be an oxymoron, since unfortunately, one is rarely enough. You should have a series of letters to send to deadbeat clients, each one becoming a little more insistent.
Batting Cages Business - Making Profits With The Swing Of A Bat
There is a Batting Cages Business for those people who love baseball and/or softball. This business will make you a profit and will help raise the self-esteem of the children who come to your facility.
Going Public: The Process for Small and Mid-size Companies to Go Public
It's the dream of every person who starts a business to some day see it trading in one of the stock exchanges even after they are no longer associated with the company. The first step (#1) is simple since most small company are already incorporated and have a board of directors, so we will start with #2.
How a small business can compete
Where do you find more customers?How do you compete with bigger businesses?Answer. Build loyalty and rewards.
Franchise Rule to be Revised; Why?
The FTC, Federal Trade Commission, is considering modifying the franchise rule. So far it has be a ten-year process; just imagine working that slow in your business? In 1995, 1997 and 1999 when the comments were first considered and taken in, which spans a ten-year period.
Why Do Franchisors have Exclusive Territories
The reason we Franchisors call it an exclusive territory is because we will not sell that area again to another franchisee. That is your area to market and to conquer and to generally obtain as much market penetration as possible.
Starting a business transporting pets
Pet Transportation Services are needed as the number of pets in the U.S.
Increase Your Profits with a Point of Sale (POS) System
Whether you operate a chain of restaurants, a mom-and-pop convenience store, or a medium-sized retail shop, you are in business to make money. And, one of the most critical aspects to your profit and loss is your ability to track information? you need to know which products are making you money, what items need to be re-ordered, who your customers are, and so on.
Secrets Revealed To Having The Most Professional Staff On The Telephone!
Do you have all the customers your business can use?The seemingly simple task of taking phone calls is a hidden liability for not just some, but most businesses. You've invested precious dollars in advertising and marketing.
|Home | Site Map | Privacy Statement | More Articles|