How to Start an Errand Running Business 1-2-3

If you don't have any specialized skills or experience, you can still make good money running errands for other people. Having an errand-running business isn't a bad deal, either. Do you like working "out of the office", being on the move and a constant change of scenery? Errand running could be the ideal business for you, without the headache of long-distance travel.

You don't need much financially or equipment-wise to start - a vehicle is ideal, but actually a bicycle may be able to handle jobs just fine. If you have a truck or van, you increase your job options, and the rates you can charge. By the way, errand running can be a convenient part-time business.

Another benefit to being an errand-runner is that your client base is actually growing. People's busy lifestyles combined with the expanding baby boomer group makes errand runners in high demand. Companies are even outsourcing to save money - your errand running business can profit from businesses too. In fact, you have so many potential customers, it may be overwhelming on where to start. Consider a delivery service for doctor offices, shopping assistance for elderly people, take-out service for restaurants, transporting packages for businesses and running miscellaneous errands for busy parents, just to name a few.

You can charge by the hour for your errand service, but don't forget to include your mileage costs, or add it on to your hourly fee. You may decide to offer regular clients discounts to entice them to hire you for more help. If you can make yourself available for "emergency" service or working at short notice, you can also charge higher rates.

So where do you find your customers? The best way (not to mention cost-effective) may be to network with people you know or print business cards and drop them off at establishments such as local dry cleaners, garden shops or elderly care homes. Meet with business owners, restaurant managers and doctor's offices to explain your company, and how you can save them money. Print a resume of the services you offer, along with your rates, hours of operation, contact information and references. This way they can keep the information after they meet with you, and the first impression you make is professional and organized.

Treat your customers well with reliable, timely service, and you'll have a hard time getting rid of them. Word-of-mouth advertising can spread very quickly, so use this "marketing" strategy to your benefit by going the extra mile for your customers.

So how do you actually start your errand running business?

1.Get to know your local community - geographically. Short-cuts can really help. If you want more specific start-up instructions, pick up an inexpensive start-up guide on how tostart an errand running business orinterview an already-successful delivery company or errand runner who can give you advice.

2.Find out who your customers are. What tasks do people dread doing in your neighborhood? What extra value will you offer them and how much are they willing to pay you? See what other companies are charging for similar services. Keep in mind that you don't need to offer the lowest price to win customers - as long as you offer more value (i.e. additional service options, faster service, weekend or evening hours, etc).

3.Find out which licenses or permits you need from your local government office. Talk with an accountant, insurance agent and banker (you can get referrals from other local business owners or friends) to get helpful tips on financing, tax issues, insurance and business management that will save you time, money and hassles in the long run.

Get Started!

An errand-running business really allows you to start small and grow at your own speed. Learn as you go and make your own rules - after all, it's YOUR business.

Author:. Home Business Center, Inc. offers a new Free Business Start-Up Checklist and over 218 business startup guides. They also ... Go Deeper | Website

Have a question for Sue?

26th July 2014 5:28pm
I am wanting to start an Wedding Errand Business what should I offer to my clients

2nd October 2014 1:37pm
I want to start an errand business, but can only work Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 12p to 4pm. Does that sound feasible? Live in Roanoke, Va., so no competetion

13th May 2015 2:36pm
I would like to start a errand services, picking up prescriptions, groceries, basic errands but I am not sure of price to charge. I am thinking of 15.00 for services.

25th May 2015 8:32pm
how would you go about getting paid for ederly services by insurance companies like Medicare? Most clients I would think are on a fixed income.
17th June 2015 11:13am
John that's a great question. Have you had any success with that.
1st April 2017 2:32pm
I worked for Humana/Medicare for seniors. Humana doesn't pay for this service nor cleaning services for seniors. So, my guess is unless you contact Medicare directly. It isn't paid for.

30th June 2015 1:44pm
I want to start an errand business for the elderly, but I keep looking on line for what business license I need and I can't find an answer. Do you know who I get in touch with for this? thank You
25th February 2017 9:01pm
what kind of insurance do i need for errand service

17th September 2015 3:29pm
What insurance company will insure a small errand business?

3rd October 2015 1:54am
I think you dont need a business license just an EIN number for tax purposes

11th November 2015 5:14am
You only need a valid police check other wise known as crb also business insurance for your vehicle if been used to do shopping etc,libillity insurance also registure with hmrc and if needed get a good book person and business bank account

11th November 2015 5:20am
I am setting my own business doing errands and a general handy man for the elderly and all you need is public libility insurance,business insurance on your vehicle if been used to do shopping or errands,you would need to registure with hmrc as soon as you start trading and get a good books person and business bank account and then you will be ready to start trading. As i have found you are unable to offer to take the elderly out in your car unless you a dont charge as otherwise you need a taxi ... Read More
5th January 2017 12:15am
Joe, Are you saying that if I wanted to drive a client to a doctors appt or to go food shopping... I would need a taxi license??

20th January 2016 1:20pm
Am about to start an errand running business in my state in my country Nigeria. I want to know what options i have?

14th June 2016 8:00am
I live in the uk, could you give me some guidance on setting up a business a step by step guide from the beginning, errands for the elderly

27th June 2016 2:47am
I want to start an errand service or senior services company in Ft. Myers, fl. And would like a start up guide and how to charge. Do you have to be bonded to go in houses (drop off food)or just best to make arrangement when home or neighbors? I started this about 14 yrs ago when I was a surgical tech and a lot of dr.'s had me doing business/personal needs and I stopped when I got pregnant. I'm worried about background check too as I was in some trouble about 8 yrs ago and am worried ... Read More

Candace Sanders
7th July 2016 10:51am
I would like to run an errand business for a full time job.

Candace Sanders
8th July 2016 6:43pm
How do I set up my own business?

2nd August 2016 10:22pm
As an errand runner, do I pay for everything up front and then bill my clients or should they be expected to give me cash or some way to pay for things before hand? It would waste a lot of time if I had to go to each client to gather funds before running errands for the day but it also seems risky to charge it all to my account with the hopes that they will pay me back.

23rd September 2016 7:50am
I want to take people to their Dr appointments and wait with them. Will I lose my cna license doing this?

14th June 2017 9:15am
What type of insurance does one need in this particular industry and what exactly would it cover.

18th June 2017 8:43pm
I wish to start errand running business for #elderly people, #financial (taxes & bills paying) #conference back ups,#personal errands etc . Any who can advice on requirements, charges patterns any relevant info?

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