There are a lot of jobs within the trucking industry that work behind the scenes

. Find out more about the role of a freight broker and what their potential income is.

How much do freight brokers make: A freight broker works to connect shipping companies with transporters. Freight brokers take a commission, between 10% and 35%, so if you have more clients you will make more money.

Because of the commission, the salary of a freight broker varies greatly but you can make between $50,000 and $90,000.

What is a freight broker?

On one side you have a trucker or trucking company, and on the other side, you have a company with goods. To connect the two, a freight broker is needed.

A freight broker will connect the shipping company with an authorized trucker to transport the cargo. This intermediary has no stake in the cargo being shipped but rather deals in relationships and logistics.

How does a freight broker earn money?

Because a freight broker isn’t actually selling the products that are actually shipped, they need a different method of making money. This is in the form of a commission.

Freight brokers work hard, so their money earned is justified. They need to find reliable transporters, such as trucking companies, to move goods in a safe and dependable manner.

Freight brokers have access to a wide network of trucking companies, so they have better connections than shippers. Their expertise and knowledge network are what their reputation is founded on.

Smaller shipping companies may prefer to use a freight broker as a way to limit their company’s scope. If you are just starting out, you don’t want to stretch yourself too thin, so outsourcing this part of the process can be quite beneficial.

Types of brokers

This is getting technical, but if you are interested in becoming a freight broker, there are different categories. The type of broker you become will influence the amount of money you can make.

Licensed freight broker

With this type of broker, the potential for money earned is greater, but so is the risk. You need to take on more of an initial investment, which will hopefully pay off, but sometimes doesn’t.

As a licensed freight broker, you own your own company and have your own authority. While you can start out small, eventually, you might actually employ other freight brokers and outsource some of the harder work.

W-2 freight brokers

This type of broker will work for a licensed broker. You don’t have to invest your own money but you still get a decent salary, which is usually a combination of base pay and a commission.

1099 freight brokers

This category is similar to W-2 brokers. However, while you are still with a licensed broker, you are not employed by them permanently and instead remain an independent contractor.

Freight broker salaries by state

Freight broker salaries by state

While these figures are constantly changing, here are the top five states with the highest earning potential for freight brokers.

  • Kansas – $75,000
  • Arkansas – $71,000
  • Illinois – $66,000
  • Utah – $65,000
  • Georgia – $64,000

What is the most a freight broker can make?

A freight broker is paid by commission. This ranges between 10% and 35% so the potential for huge profits is immense.

The more connections you make between shippers and truckers, the more money you can make. However, one person can only manage so many deals.

The result is that with more business comes more employees to hire. This will then dilute your profits, so you won’t really be able to make too much more money than your starting salary.

One way that profits can increase in the future is through the use of technology. If you can streamline and automate your services, even in a small capacity, this will mean fewer people to pay and more deals one through.

What states have the highest-paying broker freight?

On average, Kansas, Arkansas, and Illinois have the highest salaries for freight brokers. What’s nice is that the cost of living in these states is not as high as in other states, so your salary will go even further.

How do you become a freight broker?

Go to school

In order to be a licensed freight broker, you need to be certified. Have a look at your town as there should be courses available that will teach you about the brokerage business.

Practical experience

The more hands-on experience you have, the easier it will be to be successful in your new venture. Talk to other companies, either to get a job or volunteer, so you can learn more about being a broker.


Thanks to technology, you can actually start your own brokerage firm in your very own home. Start with a solid computer and internet connection, as well as broker software.

You can try your luck at running your own business on your own but without the proper connections, this can take time. Instead, you may want to look for a job with a larger broker company to get your feet wet.

How to earn more as a freight broker

Strong soft skills

Being a broker means you need to have clear communication skills. You will have to talk with all manner of customers and be ready to tackle any issues and solve different problems.

You will also need decent computer skills as brokering involves complex software. If you know how to troubleshoot basic computer issues, it will make your job much easier.

Find new customers

Without customers, you have no business. Part of being a broker involves following leads and establishing relationships.

As this is a commission-based job, the more customers you have, the more money you will make.


Time is money, especially with being a broker. You can only take on as many customers as you have time for, so the more efficient you are, the more customers you can interact with.

As you grow, try to delegate mundane administrative tasks to others so you can focus on the task of generating leads and helping clients.


The potential for income as a freight broker is huge. The job is mostly based on commission, so the more clients you have, the more money you will make.