How much can a freight broker or freight agent earn?

"The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Freight Brokers!"
Written by Dennis Brown former CEO of 5X Top 100 Freight Broker

I get this question all the time so I thought it might be a good topic for a blog post. I hope you enjoy and don’t be afraid to reply with comments below! :)

First let me start out by saying that becoming a freight broker or freight agent is not some pie in the sky instant path to riches!  Yes there are a lot of opportunities and good freight brokers and agents are in high demand but it is not some get rich quick scheme, I see it as more of a get rich slow opportunity!  Like any business, success or failure is going to be in direct correlation to the skills, planning, resources and hard work of the people running it.

To get started I thought I might share how much the top 5 freight brokers did in revenue for 2010 based upon Transport Topics Top 25 Freight Brokerages rankings.

CH Robinson: $6,000,000,000+ (Yes that is $6 billion in revenue!)
Hub Group: $1.3 billion
Transplace: $990 million
Landstar: $824 million
Excel Transportation: $717 million

First please let me state for the record that these are the top freight brokers in the U.S. and are not the norm or average.  The fact is, the freight brokerage business is very fragmented with thousands of brokers; the majority of which do less than $5 million per year in sales.

As you will learn very quickly in business, revenue is great but profit is the key.  I estimated that most freight brokers operate in the realm of 12-20% gross margins. That means on $5 million in revenue the gross margin contribution would fall between $600,000 and $1 million.  To determine actual pre-tax profit you then need to subtract all your expenses including office expenses, utilities, marketing, salaries, commissions, travel, entertainment, etc at which point your pre-tax profit on $5 million would like fall somewhere between 5 -10% of revenue which would equal $250,000 to $500,000 in before tax profit.


As for freight broker agents, of which I have met hundreds of during my career, the earnings once again are based heavily on their skills, planning, resources and work ethic. Small freight agents that are new to the industry conservatively earn $30,000 to $50,000 per year in commissions working from home while more experienced freight agents that I know earn $100,000 to $300,000 or more per year.  As you saw in the video above, top freight broker agents can earn as much as $50,000+ per month in commissions depending upon the size of their customer base and the amount of freight they move daily.

Bottom line, becoming a freight broker or freight agent can be very lucrative but like I said at the beginning, this is not a get rich scheme but with the proper training, a good plan and  hard work there is a wealth of opportunity available.

For more details on why now is the best time to become a freight broker or freight agent check out my previous at titled, Timing is everything, why become a freight broker today?

If you enjoyed this post or have questions reply below with your comments I always enjoy your feedback!

To your success,

Dennis Brown

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22 Responses to How much can a freight broker or freight agent earn?

  1. Jeff says:

    Great artical. I am 2 months into my company and I love it. I am learning this pretty much on my own and would love if you would share some tips and tricks you have learned along the way. I am determined to make this work and finally be able to spend time with my family.
    Thanks again


  2. Marcus Alvarado says:

    I did like reading this blog. From what you are saying, brokers make a lot more money than I imagined or even expected to be paid. I guess it’s like you said, your work ethics will play a big part in your success. Thanks for posting this.

  3. Ed Dominguez says:

    thinking about joining the club. don’t these shippers have there usual trucking
    company’s already. or is it kinda like first come first serve.& what is the best way
    to find these loads. calling or door to door. or is there a website.

    • DennisBrown says:

      Great question…I think a combination of warm phone calls using referrals if possible or at least good sales intelligence is a great way to to get shipping clients via the phone but I strongly recommend face to face whenever possible.

      As for competition it’s everywhere in every industry, so focus on value and figure what your good at. I recommend developing a niche that fills the need of a specific target market.

      Do you have experience or have you taken any training yet?

  4. Pingback: How to get your freight broker license? | Freight Broker Training Blog

  5. Bernard Strong says:


    I have decided to take your freight broker training for my new company. I was going to attend a 2 day training school, but I’m going to try your program first. I’m very excited to start my new company; which my plan is to provide jobs for jobless people around me who are hard working. I hope I’m making the right choice; because I really want to have a successful company; which I know depends on me and the people around me. I’m willing to work hard and build this company over time with your help step by step. I do not want to be an freight agent, but I do want to be a freight broker or agency. Hopefully, your system will train me step by step in this process. B.Strong

    • DennisBrown says:

      Yes my online freight broker training program is very comprehensive, from getting your freight broker authority / license right down to how to source trucks and price freight for your customers.
      Stay tuned to this blog as well where I regularly share tips and other related information on how to make money as a freight broker or freight agent.

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  7. Jeffw says:

    Hello Dennis,

    Glad I found your site. I am i the process of applying for my MC number, and filing the rest of the forms once the number is assigned. I have been in the trucking industry for 12 years, in sales of parts and customer support. I have the carrier contacts, and a few shippers who are willing to give me shot. We both know how large the industry is, but how small it can be if a person develops a bad reputation. I staked my whole career on honesty, and helping the customer in any way possible. They remember these small details, and it sure helps when a person is trying to start their own business.
    I have added your page to my bookmarls, and will be reading your many posts. I most defintely will be asking you questions!!


    • DennisBrown says:

      Thank you Jeff, I am very glad you are enjoying my freight broker training blog. Check back frequently and
      let me know if you have something in particular you would like me to address in a future blog post.

  8. Steve says:

    My question is regarding credit .. if my credit is not good will that effect my chances to start a broker company?

    • DennisBrown says:

      Great question Steve! The only thing credit will affect if your ability to get a $10,000 freight broker surety bond because it is a credit/insurance instrument.
      On the other hand very few freight brokers actually use surety bonds they use broker trust accounts which is explained in detail in my online freight broker training program.

      The other option is to start out as a freight broker agent where you work under a licensed broker to get started…also covered in detail in my online training. :)

      Hope this helps!


  9. Tom Bell says:

    Hi Dennis,

    I just ordered your boot camp presentation. I have only done this type of work for about 3 months now. I have made some money and I want to do this as a career. I have already learned some valuable information from your course and I am encouraged to know that you have done so well since you started with no experience. I plan to become a freight broker within 6 months so that I can earn more money. Thanks for your course, Tom

    • DennisBrown says:

      Great job Tom and thank you for enrolling in online training.
      Please note that regardless is you ever become a licensed broker there is a lot of opportunity
      to earn a great living as a freight agent so as I am sure you have heard before walk before
      you run and best of luck!

      To your success!

      Dennis Brown

  10. Reggie says:

    Does having a felony in my background prohibit me from getting a brokers license,
    or keep me from working as an agent?

    • DennisBrown says:

      Having a felony will likely prevent you from getting your freight broker license/bond but because freight agents do not need to be licensed
      it will be at the brokers discretion. If it were me I would look at the type of felony, how long ago it was and any details related to it
      before I made a decision. Don’t give up I do know people that have made mistakes in the past and have been able to become both freight agents!

  11. Jarvis Short says:

    Jarvis Short here Charlotte, NC thinking of taking you course, give me a call

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