• Have an Effective and Sustainable Sales Process
  • Implement Logistics Technology
  • Build a Lead Generation Engine
  • Strengthen Your Brand
  • Retain Customers & Drive Loyalty
  • Develop a Reliable Carrier/Transportation Network
  • Watch Over Competitors
  • Conclusion



    Imagine trying to build a skyscraper with bricks and hammers. That's what it feels like trying to scale up without the right tools and resources. Scaling for small logistics businesses can be challenging, especially with limited resources, unorganized sales processes, and huge competitors.

    Click Here: Secure More Shipments and Quote Faster With This 3PL Tool

    However, there are tips for managing small business in supply chain and logistics that can help you succeed. In this article, we'll explain seven best tips that you can use to expand your logistics business effectively.

    1. Have an Effective and Sustainable Sales Process

    To grow your logistics business, you need a solid logistics sales plan. Your dedicated sales team will use this plan to drive new customers to your business.

    A good sales process can fill your logistics sales pipeline with qualified leads. From leads, you can convert them into customers. You can effectively achieve that if you already outlined a clear sales process.

    Let’s say you already have an effective and sustainable sales process ready for implementation.

    When someone on your team finds a potential customer, they should guide them through different stages: first, they check if the lead is a good fit, then they figure out what the customer needs, and finally, they make an offer. They also need to keep in touch with the customer until they close the deal. After that, they should keep following up to make sure the customer is happy with your service.

    Qualifying leads is essential to gaining new customers, and following up is essential for retaining them. All you need to do is to create a simple and effective sales plan that your sales team can follow.

    Related: Freight Sales 101: From Prospecting to Closing

    2. Implement Logistics Technology

    Using logistics technology to your advantage can set you apart from the competition and help you expand your logistics business. According to Supply Chain Digital, the benefits of logistics software and digital transformation in the supply chain industry are proven to drive growth, mitigate risk, and optimize costs. However, as of November 2020, more than 50% of organizations had not actively started to build a roadmap for supply digital transformation. Implementing technology now, such as 3PL freight software, will enable you to stay ahead of the curve and save valuable time and money.

    Implementing a CRM (customer relationship management) is a great step toward integrating technology into your business. A CRM specifically designed for 3PLs can give you even more of a competitive edge because it has specialized features that allow you to better cater to your customers’ unique needs.

    A logistics CRM designed to help you secure more shipments and better manage your leads and customers. It allows you to access a full logistics quoting tool, specialized logistics dashboard, sales pipeline, real-time market conditions, and more. All the capabilities and data you need are at your fingertips because SCRM was explicitly designed for 3PLs.

    Related: 7 Must-Have Features of a CRM in Logistics and Supply Chain Management

    Tips for Managing Small Business in Supply Chain and Logistics - A woman creating quote using SCRM.

    3. Build a Lead Generation Engine

    Building a lead generation engine is crucial for overcoming freight challenges and expanding your logistics business. This best practice utilizes two types of lead generation: inbound and outbound.

    If you want to expand, learn how to get clients in logistics business. It allows you to generate leads by creating and sharing content that draws potential customers’ attention and converts them into leads. This can be in the form of content marketing, SEO, social media, newsletters, and more.

    When you already know how to generate leads in logistics. It involves reaching out to prospects rather than waiting for them to contact you. This includes researching leads, cold calling, direct in-person sales, events, and more.

    By combining inbound and outbound strategies, you set the stage for how to be successful in logistics sales. These are just a few ways to build a marketing engine that ensures consistent lead generation, helping your logistics business thrive.

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    4. Strengthen Your Brand

    Your company represents a brand, and investing time and resources to strengthen your brand is an important way to expand your logistics company. First, define a unique brand identity. What sets your logistics company apart from your competitors? Next, ensure your brand messaging is consistent across every platform, from your website to social media to your sales team’s pitches. Then, stick to your brand identity and message at every point of contact with leads, prospects, and existing customers to build a strong, recognizable brand.

    5. Retain Customers & Drive Loyalty

    New customers are a crucial part of growing your logistics business, but you cannot ignore your existing customers. Loyal customers provide a foundation for continued growth. When you utilize SCRM, you have the capability to rate your customers, so you can better serve the people bringing the most business to you. You can automatically set your most profitable customers to become five-star customers. Strategize and prioritize connecting with these customers.

    SCRM also enables you to implement and systemize call or meeting cycles. Staying in touch with your customers allows you to proactively address their needs, which is a major stride toward retaining their business.

    Satisfied customers can provide some of the best advertising and social proof. Hopefully, they will refer your services to colleagues, but a simple way to elicit more referrals is to ask. Follow up with customers to thank them for their business and ask if they know anyone who might benefit from your services.

    Tips for Managing Small Business in Supply Chain and Logistics - Happy client with a salesperson

    6. Develop a Reliable Carrier/Transportation Network

    Your reputation is inseparably tied to the reputation and reliability of your carrier/transportation network. Pricing matters, but it should not outweigh quality service. You need a carrier/transportation network that you can count on if you want your customers to be able to count on you.

    Conduct a thorough screening process when considering a new carrier/transportation partnership for your logistics business. Check their successful delivery rates, delay rates, safety ratings, and customer service statistics. Determine your standard for carrier requirements, and do not compromise. Additionally, proactively continue to expand your network. This ensures that you have sufficient capacity to meet customer demand.

    7. Watch Over Competitors

    You are not the only one seeking to know how to grow your logistics business. Your competitors are likewise investing in new technology and marketing to expand. Study your competitors, frequently visiting their websites. Sign up for their social media accounts and email newsletters so that you can keep the pulse on what they are doing and how effective their attempts are. Knowing this allows you to adapt more quickly and stay on top of your competition.


    If you’re managing your logistics business and looking to expand it, these tips are a great way to start. Examine your logistics business sales process, evaluate whether or not you are maximizing the benefits of technology, and focus on having consistent lead generation and branding. With existing customers, follow up consistently to ensure you continue meeting their needs. Intentionally cultivate a reliable carrier/transportation network and be aware of your competitors' actions. All of these strategies will help you grow your logistics company.

    If you want to grow in these areas, a CRM built specifically for 3PLs can help you.

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    Thank you for reading our article. For more educational content, you can explore all our blogs here. You can follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook to get supply chain industry trends and efficiency tips. If you have other inquiries or suggestions, do not hesitate to contact us through this link.


    Phil Magill Supply Chain Expert

    Phil is IFS’s co-founder, chairman, and industry expert, holding over 35 years of experience in the transportation industry. He is also the founder and CEO of Transportation Management Solutions, the largest privately held 3PL in South Florida. Prior to TMS and IFS, Phil held significant roles in C.H. Robinson Worldwide, Freight Transportation Specialist (acquired by C.H. Robinson), and Emery Worldwide.