Your fleet is an important part of your business. Not only is it an opportunity to advertise your services, it can also make a difference to productivity. Choosing the right van ensures you have the space and performance you need to keep on top of jobs, as well as keeping running costs down. Here are our top tips on how to choose the ideal van for your business.

Think about usage

This is the obvious question when thinking about your options. Delivering furniture, for example, will require not only a sufficient load length, but load height as well to accommodate bulky or awkwardly shaped items. If you need to transport tools and smaller goods, however, a more compact option with the opportunity to fit shelving or storage solutions may be best.

Alternatively, you may need a vehicle capable of carrying extra crew members from time to time or a refrigerated option for perishable goods. Different manufacturers specialise in different van types, so be sure which brands produce the style you need before setting your heart on a marque.

Consider where you work

If your work primarily takes you through towns and cities with Low Emission Zones or narrow streets, you’ll want an option that not only has suitable dimensions, but that also keeps emissions to a minimum. Alternatively, if you do lots of miles on the motorway, a diesel vehicle may be the best choice, as they tend to benefit from better fuel efficiency over long distances.

If you frequently access building sites or areas that require some off-road travel, you’ll want a commercial vehicle that can cope well with rough terrain. Think about pick ups or versions that offer four-wheel drive capability.

The cost factor

Of course, cost is a big part of finding the right vehicle for your needs. When looking at used vans for sale, don’t simply focus on the initial outlay, but also on things like lifetime running costs, tax, insurance and benefit in kind. These all affect business costs in the long run, and while it may seem more expensive to purchase a diesel model initially, for example, it may prove cheaper over the course of three years.

There’s also the comfort of your workforce to consider. The cheapest model may seem the most inviting, but has it got all the essentials for a productive working day? For instance, it may seem like Bluetooth connectivity is a luxury, but when it means calls can be made on the road as opposed to your drivers pulling over to talk on a mobile, you could be looking at significant differences in productivity over the course of a month.

Finance packages

Different manufacturers and van dealerships offer different van finance packages for their vehicles, so getting examples of these before buying is useful. By seeing what’s on offer, you can work out the best option for your business, ensuring you get the best possible van for a price that suits. Once you have a shortlist, look for or request finance examples to help you make the best choice.