Everyone needs equipment in their daily lives, their daily tasks, and to accomplish certain things. They range from the simplest kitchen equipment to something overly complicated like renting aerial lifts from an aerial lift company to build buildings or fix power lines.
Making the decision to start an equipment rental company is not a bad idea at all. In fact, if you do it right, you can ensure your newfound company’s success in the niche that you’re operating in.
But of course, starting a business from scratch with handfuls of operating costs is not a walk in the park. It’s going to take more than just purchasing the equipment you need from a seller. As with all businesses, there’s some groundwork involved, and you’ll need a strong foundation if you want your equipment rental business to take off.
How to Start an Equipment Rental Business
Recent surveys from Guidant Financial say that more than 78% of small businesses reported profits. That’s a good sign, isn’t it? in other words, there’s no better time like the present to start on your new equipment rental business.
So get off to a great start with these tips:
#1 Do research on your chosen market
According to CB Insights, 42% of startup businesses fail because they offer products or services that the market does not need. Great business ideas are all about demand. Your product or service can be very good, but if nobody wants it, your business will still fail.
Also, starting the exact same business in two separate locations just miles apart can lead to drastically different results.
Before you begin, make sure you know what your customers are looking for. And one of the best ways to do it is quite simple — strike up a conversation with them. So if you want to rent out bicycles, speak to cyclists and bike enthusiasts.
If you want to rent out construction equipment, talk to local construction companies.
Three questions you can ask:
- How much are you willing to pay? Don’t pull numbers out of hats. Get a rough estimate of how much your customers are able and are willing to pay.
- What types of equipment are you looking for? Are they looking for basic or high-end equipment?
- Do you need more than rentals? Maybe there are other services that you can offer. It’s not bad to have these visions for the future. Because if you do things right, you may become a well-known one-stop-shop for your customers in the future.
#2 Be a smart buyer
After you understand what your customers want, what they need, and what they’re looking for, you can then make smart decisions about the equipment that you purchase. Avoid overspending on equipment in the beginning.
Only buy your minimum viable inventory that’s based on your market research. And after you’ve started, you can just buy more equipment that is more popular with your customers and more lucrative.
It will be cheaper and easier to purchase more equipment later rather than get rid of excess and unwanted equipment.
At all costs, avoid idle inventory. It only takes up space and money that you could have used to grow your business even more.
#3 Look for the best deals for your equipment
As you start an equipment rental business, make sure you make the most of every penny and cent that you’ve ever spent. Your equipment is one of the biggest investments you’ll ever make, so be sure to invest your money wisely.
Purchasing the newest and latest equipment may look great and flashy, but consider your alternatives closely.
- Can you purchase used equipment? This can save you a massive amount of money, letting you purchase more equipment or invest in other areas.
- What are your customers searching for? Will your customers be twice as happy if you spend twice as much? Avoid buying high-end if they’re looking for budget rentals?
#4 Ensure your equipment is maintained correctly
You’re owning an equipment rental business. And that’s why your business depends on your equipment. Some things you can do to take good care of your equipment inventory are:
- Cosmetic fixes: Equipment should work like new. And to be successful, it should look new as well. Your equipment should create a great impression for your potential customers.
- Prompt and thorough repairs: Fix any rental equipment issues thoroughly and as soon as possible, so they don’t cause you more trouble in the future.
- Regular equipment maintenance: Fix and spot potential problems before the customers can.
#5 Develop partnerships
Depending on what type of equipment rental business you own, you shouldn’t hesitate to branch out and instigate partnerships with other businesses related to your niche.
Your business can succeed as a standalone, but with partnerships, you can grow your client bases and perhaps even open new business opportunities in the future.
#6 Claim your online business listings
Claiming online business listings aren’t as daunting as they first appear. It doesn’t require massive amounts of investment money, time, and effort in creating a website. However, it is vital for giving your site a good impression. We live in an age where people head to the internet to do some service research. Your site can create a good impression. Your site needs:
- Information that customers need: Tell your customers about your business and let them know how they can go about renting for you.
- Professional-looking web design: This shows that your site can be trusted and is wholly legitimate.
- To be easy to find online: The best website is useless without visitors.
In addition to websites, creating a presence on social media is important as well. Your customers will be on Facebook and other social media sites as well.
#7 Get your business paperwork in order
The kind of paperwork you do depends on where you’re based. Aside from the formalities of starting any business, a rental business has other insurance liabilities. Your entire business is dependent on non-employees interacting with your equipment,
Even with no-liability waivers, make sure that you have the right insurance. After all, you don’t want one big hospital bill to jeopardize your entire business.