What Should Your Businesses Do About Gas Prices?
Posted by Matt Krautstrunk on March 14, 2011 in Business Management [ 1 Comment ]
Gas prices have hit $4 a gallon in some parts of the country. As fuel prices rise, businesses that require extensive travel are hit the hardest by this surge. Everyone from repairmen to delivery service businesses are burdened by the rise in fuel. However, as a business owner you don’t have to suffer. Even with gas prices at $4 a gallon, with a little creativity you will still be able to operate on margins and stand out amongst your competition.
According the Washington Post, your business isn’t the only one hurt by the gas prices, “Wheelz Up uses six large cargo vans to deliver parts around the region, as far north as Baltimore and as far south as Richmond. Fully loaded, the vehicles can carry up to 9,000 pounds, and each averages about 750 miles per week. Some companies — including airlines — have been passing on higher fuel costs to customers in the form of surcharges, but small-business owners said it is undesirable and sometimes impossible to add those fees.”
With gas prices so high, businesses are forced to think strategically about their routes and pricing structure. For many businesses, including surcharges is not an option; it exposes them to their competition. Your business should plan out its fleet’s route beforehand, double up on staff when possible, and locate the cheapest gas. “Lopez’s drivers are using iPhone apps to try to find the cheapest gas in the area and waiting until they reach the more distant suburbs, which often have lower prices, to fill up the vans’ tanks. In some cases, Lopez has tried to group routes to save miles, but he said the urgency associated with delivering many parts limits his ability to do that.”
For commuters, a Zipcar may be a great option. Zipcar simplifies the rental car business, signing in, reserving, and picking up a Zipcar at any desired location is a breeze. It saves you on the cost of gas because Zipcar pays for your gas with a gas card. You can fill up your Zipcar with free fuel at any gas station. Plus you have the options to drive more fuel efficient vehicles if desired.
Whether your business is struggling at optimizing its fleet, or you are paying too much for daily commutes, there are options for you to avoid the pains at the pump.
Image Credit: truthmove.org