GPS vehicle tracking systems have benefited businesses of all scales, small and enterprise levels, featuring a transportation component. Trucking companies and service providers alike have found much use of the enhanced transparency and better control over fleet vehicles that GPS tracking ensures.
While the impact of GPS vehicle tracking systems cannot be overstated, note that no two fleet management software are the same. Some high-tech options may be too complicated for you to manage, while others are simply meant for bigger fleets thus financially unsuitable for the smaller ones.
In this article, we will list some of the options you could go for GPS tracking and how these can make your business more profitable.
Simplest GPS Vehicle Tracking Options
Here are the three most common and simplest GPS tracking solutions employed by most businesses:
Cellphone-Based GPS Tracking System
Most businesses start off small because they feel that they cannot commit to a GPS vehicle tracking system, most of which do demand users to sign binding contracts and work with a set number of vehicles at a minimum. Others simply don’t feel up to the fleet tracking business thing that the process demands professional expertise and an intensive technical knowledge of the matter.
Even though both of these assumptions are untrue, it is understandable why many business owners, especially those who’ve just started, would think so.
The only solution that they can come up with to fill the void is to simply download a tracking software on their phones instead of getting a GPS tracker. This way, the managers won’t be monitoring the vehicles per se by the mobile phones of the drivers, placed within the vehicle.
Cellphone-based tracking is both cheap and highly accessible, we’ll give you that, but this option is far from being perfect. Firstly, the system has a ton of limitations when compared with a conventional GPS vehicle tracking system, and secondly, it is highly unreliable.
Apart from showing the real-time location of the cell phone, this method can’t do much else for you. You can’t expect advanced fleet tracking features like route optimization, monitoring driver behavior, mileage, fuel use, and so on – all of this comes as a package deal with GPS tracking, not the cellphone-based charade.
Don’t get us wrong, cell phone tracking is effective if you only plan on finding the real-time location of your assets, but as a fleet tracking system, it is next to useless. For instance, what if your driver forgets their phone at home or simply turns it off (or it loses its battery power and switches off)?
In such situations, you’ll be in the dark about where your fleet is.
And, there is literally no way for you to know if your vehicle is working in optimal condition or not, or if your driver is doing a well enough job – considering all this, would it be too much of a stretch to get an actual fleet tracking solution?
To sum up this option’s effectiveness, here are the pros and cons:
- It is the simplest of the lot, just download the app on your phones and get tracking
- No technical knowledge required
- No installation needed
- You don’t have to pay for any tracker device
- No need to sign any binding contracts
- The abilities of a cell-phone based vehicle tracking system are limited at best
- You can’t expect to match the level of excellence of a genuine GPS tracking solution
- The software features are pretty limited
Plug-and-Play GPS Trackers
Next, come the actual fleet tracking options such as Fleetr.
The reason we’ve broken down the GPS vehicle tracking systems into plug-and-play and hard-wired categories is because the two bring different features to the table. Plug-and-play devices are the simpler of the lot, the simplest option after cellphone-based tracking, except with complete GPS tracking features included.
Plug-and-play devices, as the name suggests, don’t need any special installation or setup, you just do as it says “plug” and “play” – that’s all there is to it. The device usually connects with the OBD in the vehicle, and once you’ve set the GPS tracking software in your phone or computer, you’ll be able to see the location of your vehicle in real-time.
Of course, this is not the end of it, but merely the start.
GPS vehicle tracking systems use a sophisticated data collection and transmission protocol that displays all the information you need on your screen, this includes the speed of your vehicles, travel history, mileage, fuel usage, driver behavior, and so on.
All of this provides you with all the information need to make informed decisions about your fleet and maximize their productivity. You can also assert more control over your drivers and ensure that they drive safely, following all the traffic rules and avoiding trouble every time.
If one of your workers is acting oddly, or has taken a detour, or is simply speeding, you’ll know about it.
The nature of the data produced by this GPS vehicle tracking system makes the facts reported irrefutable, thus you will be better able to communicate any problems with your drivers and thus seek their cooperation in the matter as denying the data’s authenticity is out of the question.
And in case you were worried about the contacts and commitments demanded by most fleet tracking solutions, you can rest assured that options like Fleetr, which demand nothing of the sort are also available in the market. Fleetr offers a free tracking device, and all that you have to do is to plug it in, get tracking, and only pay a mere $9.99 fee per vehicle per month.
Thus you can rest assured that this option offers all the convenience and simplicity of a barebones cellphone-based tracking system but with the added features of a full-fledged fleet management software.
Here are the pros and cons:
- No complex installation needed
- No technical knowledge required
- Simple and convenient, just plug the device in and get tracking
- Sophisticated data gathering and reporting
- Complete transparency
- You can enjoy better control over how your drivers work
- Plug-and-play devices can be removed comparatively easily
- Some fleet tracking options demand you to sign binding contracts, although this is not universal, i.e. Fleetr does not force any obligations upon you
Hard-Wired GPS Trackers
The third option for fleet tracking is using a hard-wired GPS vehicle tracking system. Though similar in action to the aforementioned variant, this GPS tracking solution has some applications of its own. The biggest merit of this type of GPS tracker is that it is harder to remove from the vehicle and thus offers enhanced safety to the asset from theft.
In case one of your vehicles is indeed stolen, you can simply track the location and forward the information to the police. Of course, the same would also be true for the aforementioned plug-and-play type devices, but those can be removed with rather ease if the perpetrator notices them.
Hard-wired installations, on the other hand, are not only hard to spot but also just as hard to remove. However, if you look at this the other way around, these devices are also much harder to install in the first place and oftentimes demand great skill and usually an additional installation fee.
This is not the case with plug-and-play GPS trackers like Fleetr, thus the option is only suitable for those who plan to ensure maximum security for a large fleet.
Hard-wired devices don’t come without legal commitments, you will have to sign a couple of papers, and these are not the sort you can skip reading and scribble over in indifference, these are legally binding agreements regarding the minimum duration, and so on.
If you don’t want to bound this way, then consider the previous option, otherwise, you’re golden with this one too.
- Hard-wired installations are harder to remove
- They offer complete input about your vehicles, even the tiniest details
- They are connected directly with the onboard diagnostics panel and can thus share maintenance alerts as well
- Perfect for anti-theft security reasons
- They need to be installed by a professional
- They cost more
- They come with some legally binding commitments that you must be willing to uphold
Benefits Of Using GPS Vehicle Tracking Software
Now that we’ve explored the simplest GPS tracking options for fleet owners and how each GPS vehicle tracking system is unique in its own respect, let’s understand why they are needed in the first place:
Enhanced Transparency & Productivity
If you can see how well your drivers are doing, where they’re headed to, and if they’re driving safely or not, you can better manage them. Transparency is one of the major tenets of the success of any business, be it a transportation business, or something else.
GPS vehicle tracking systems help create a transparent environment for fleet managers, but that does not mean that they are spying tools, in fact, far from it, these are some of the most meticulous team management assets. The idea is not to spy on your workers and see what they’re up to but instead create transparency so that you can better guide them and get the best out of them.
Since a good performance also reflects well on the workers themselves and increases the odds of promotion, it will be welcome for all involved. As the business flourishes through better productivity, so will the people who made it all possible.
Traffic accidents are not only horrendous for the victims but also for the other parties involved, even if they did not cause the accident themselves. Whatever happens on the road with your company vehicles, will be partly your fault even if you had no hand in it happening.
This means that a motor vehicle crash can set you back a couple of thousand dollars in compensation payouts, for something that you didn’t even do. Thus you must devise the perfect strategy to exert more control over the way your drivers operate the vehicles on the road.
Luckily, this is much more than possible, it is very much probable.
GPS vehicle tracking systems like Fleetr share details about the driver’s behavior throughout the trip, and a log of it can be accessed later on as well. If your drivers were speeding, hard pressing the brakes, accelerating fast, or showing recklessness in any other way, you’ll know of it.
Just be sure to handle the situation well and get them to drive safely.
Real-Time Location Tracking
The most prominent benefit of fleet tracking is the ability to see where your fleet vehicles are at any given instant. This is called real-time fleet tracking is one of the signature features of GPS vehicle tracking systems.
All GPS tracking software, at least all the good ones, share live updates on locations of all of your vehicles, and you can see them moving on your map screen just the vehicles are moving in real-time.
This not only allows you to enjoy better visibility with your fleet but also gives you more control over it. You can make informed decisions about stuff like reassigning a task to a driver, rerouting someone based on traffic updates, giving ETAs to clients, and so on.
More transparency means more worker efficiency and better leadership.
Maintenance trouble can strike at the most inconvenient hours.
Your driver may be headed towards a client with an urgent job, but the vehicle may break down in the middle of the road. What do you do then? Well, what can be done but to call for help and spending money on making things right.
If only you had a way of preempting all of this – well there is: most fleet management software offer details about the vehicles’ maintenance needs so that you can act in time before things become any more troublesome.
Fleetr Is The Simplest Fleet Tracking Solution For All Businesses
If you’re looking for the perfect fleet tracking solution, the one that needs no complex installation and doesn’t demand any hidden charges or initiation fees, then Fleetr will be perfect for you. Our innovative fleet tracking solution has been designed specifically for small businesses, meaning that your fleet, no matter how small, will benefit just as well from it.
Fleetr offers a free device that requires no complicated installation at all, just plug it in, download the app, connect to the device via the app, and get tracking, it’s that simple!
We don’t force our clients to sign any contracts or pay up initiation fees or any other binding activity, for that matter. Our goal is as simple as things get: helping people get started with GPS tracking, and that’s it, no worries, no hassle, just simple tracking.
Contact us today to get your free device and unleash the potential of fleet management in your business setting!