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Van tracking

Van tracking is an excellent tool for businesses that want to better understand how their drivers and vehicles work. Find out more today and compare quotes

Last updated 24 July 2019; first published 27 November 2017

For any business that owns and operates business vehicles and vans, a van tracking system will take the hassle out of managing your fleet.

Van tracking devices are small, GPS vehicle monitors that allow you to actively monitor your vehicles, saving time, money, and resources whilst optimising security, productivity, and performance.

Let’s take a closer look at what van tracking systems actually do, some of the benefits of using a van tracking system, how much van trackers cost and some of the best van tracking systems on the market.

Throughout this article, we will cover:


What is van tracking?

Van tracking systems provide business owners with a diverse range of information, from the location of an individual vehicle through to monitoring fuel usage and driver performance, bringing a whole host of benefits to various organisations.

If you’re looking for a simple tracking device that will allow you to monitor the location of your van, then a basic GPS tracker should be sufficient. However, GPS fleet management and tracking systems will allow you to do so much more – providing data such as vehicle speed, engine performance and driver behaviour.

If you want to immediately compare your van tracking options, simply complete the form at the top of this page today. Or, compare seven of the best vehicle tracking systems on the market today.


What are the benefits of van tracking?

Van tracking systems provide a whole host of benefits, including the following:

Keep track of employees

GPS van trackers will allow you to know exactly where your drivers are at all times. As well as keeping track of performance and down time, this will also mean that you can efficiently allocate jobs.

Optimise customer service
With access to real time information about the location of your business vehicles, you can optimise customer service by providing accurate updates and make them aware of any problems or delays as soon as they arise.

Assess driving habits
Each and every time your vans take to the road, they are representing your organisation. With this in mind, it is crucial for both your reputation, and insurance, that they drive safely and sensibly at all times.

Van tracking software often includes features that allow you to monitor driver behaviour on the road. Of course, this will also help to reduce accidents and the associated costs.

Monitor compliance
Many tracking systems have functions that help companies to track their compliance. This, in turn, can reduce the risk of fines, encourage customer trust, and improve vehicle maintenance.

Obtain key metrics
Fleet management software and van tracking services allow you to access, track, and monitor data that would otherwise remain unseen. Monitoring key driver metrics will allow you to protect them from potential hazards and constantly evaluate their business decisions.

Reduce insurance premiums
Because van tracking systems increase the chances of vehicle recovery in the event of theft, and promote safer diving, they can help to reduce your insurance premiums.


Different types of van trackers

Van tracking devices come in a variety of forms. Looking to distinguish your passive from your active devices? Need to know the difference between RFID and GPS? The following definitions should help give you some direction:

Passive tracking devices –

Perfect for smaller operations with shorter journey times

Relay information once the vehicle is turned on, or the door is opened. GPS data, speed, and heading are then recovered. Once the vehicle is returned to a set base, this information is downloaded.

Active tracking devices –

Perfect for larger-scale businesses for which live tracking is imperative

Transmit the same information as a passive device, but in real time, without the need for docking. An active tracking device will allow the vehicle to be constantly traced, even if the device is turned off.

RFID trackers

Perfect for delivery services

Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) trackers operate via electromagnetic fields, used to track vehicles. Each tracking device contains electronically stored information and collects energy from RFID readers via interrogating radio waves.

GPS trackers

A great all-rounder and the most common form of tracker

A GPS tracking system uses the Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) network to provide information on the exact location of a tracked vehicle. The Global Navigation Satellite System uses microwaves sent between satellites to create signals transmitted to GPS devices, providing information on location, vehicle speed, time and direction.


The best van trackers

The following section will pinpoint the best van trackers currently on the market. We’ll take you through the services they offer and help you decide which tracking device would best suit the wants and needs of your business fleet.

See the following table for a quick-fire view of the best suppliers.

Best van trackers at a glance

Verizon Connect Global coverage and committed customer service £22 to £42 per vehicle per month
Teletrac Navman DIRECTOR Market familiarity Quote only available on request
Movolytics Wide range of features Quote only available on request
AMS Fleet Manager Well established, trusted firm Quote only available on request

Now you’ve got an idea of what’s available, here’s a detailed account of what each supplier can do for you and your business fleet:

Verizon Connect

Though slightly above the standard price range for vehicle tracking, it’s reflective of Verizon Connect’s advanced features. Verizon Connect also offers a free live demo, so you can try before you buy.

To find out how much Verizon Connect might cost for your business, you can request a custom quote which will be based on the size of your business and its needs. Discover tailor-made quotes for your business via our handy quote finder .

Verizon Connect’s standout features include:

  • Driver management:
    Smart driver ID means you can keep an eye on the progress of each of your drivers even when they drive multiple vehicles. Drivers can also join leaderboards which show them how their driving compares to their colleagues’ – healthy competition is an excellent motivator!
  • Data trend analysis:
    Verizon Connect sorts current and historical data into an easy-to-digest dashboard chart, revealing key trends in the way your fleet works over time and helping you visualise your progress towards performance KPIs
Pros: Cons:
Global coverage
comprehensive collection of features
committed customer service
smartphone and tablet compatible
Might be out of budget if you’re looking for basic vehicle tracking

Price range: Verizon Connect charges a monthly fixed fee for each vehicle you’re tracking. The cost for using both Verizon Connect software and hardware is included in the monthly charge, sitting in the region of £22 to £42.

Best for: Global coverage and committed customer service


Teletrac Navman DIRECTOR™

Teletrac Navman DIRECTOR can help to optimise the performance of your fleet and is already used by 40,000 customers and boasts 15% faster data uptime than its competitors whilst contributing towards a 20% reduction in accidents/violations amongst users.
Pros and cons:

Pros: Cons:
Market popularity shows that this is a trusted, well-used brand

Wide variety of devices, adaptable to any business no matter the fleet size

Clear, efficient and proactive customer service

It’s an affordable vehicle tracking option

If the GPS system is off, vehicles are untraceable

The software takes time to get to grips with

Price range: As Teletrac Navman DIRECTOR quotes are highly dependent on the size of your fleet and the scope of your operations , we’re unable to provide an accurate price range for this product. However, we are able to put you in touch with the suppliers via this form that’ll help you find the perfect vehicle tracking service for your business.

Best for: Businesses looking for a popular, well used system


Movolytics

Using Movolytics, you can pick and set alerts – both via SMS and email – to keep you abreast of what your drivers are up to. You can choose to receive alerts when they’re idling, speeding, have driven out of boundary or entered a geofenced zone. You can also receive alerts when a vehicle requires maintenance.

Movolytics records journey data for future reference – useful if you ever want to look back on how many journeys were made in a certain period, check that a particular trip was completed on time, or find out where a vehicle was on a certain date.

Movolytics records and stores data about your drivers’ trips, it minimises the need for administrative tasks such as keeping timesheets.

Movolytics pros and cons

Pros: Cons:
Wide range of features
Free tracking device installation
Lifetime warranty
Easy-to-use platform
Highly-rated customer service
Unlimited training
Compatible with mobile devices
Complexity of features can be take time to fully master

Price range: Movolytics charges a fixed monthly fee based on how many vehicles you’re using it to track. The exact costings will depend on the size of your fleet, but for a better idea of what this figure might look like, take a look at our dedicated vehicle tracking costs page.

Best for: Wide range of features


AMS Fleet Manager

A vehicle tracking supplier with over 15 years of experience, the AMS Fleet Manager comes in two parts: the hardware that fits inside the vehicle, and the software that picks up and displays the tracked information.

The AMS Fleet Manager works via a multi roaming SIM card. This selects any available network, maximising connectivity to the server infrastructure and providing up-to-the-minute reporting.

The unit reports all driver behaviours, including: idling, speeding, harsh braking/cornering and excessive acceleration.

Other functions and features of the device include:

  • Driver feedback
  • Temperature probe
  • PTO (Paid Time Off) On/Off
  • Privacy button
  • Business or private miles button
  • Fuel level from an analogue sender
  • Internal antennas
  • Optional back-up battery
Pros: Cons:
The software is flexible and easily adapted to your unique business needs.

The features are comparatively advanced and more than sufficient for any startup

Pricing information is only available on request of a quote

Best for: Well established, trusted firm able to offer a wealth of features

Price range: AMS Fleet Manager quotes are only available upon request, but this form will help you find the perfect vehicle tracking service for your business, well put you in touch with the suppliers able to cater for your fleet’s individual needs.


Tips for choosing the right van tracker for you

Key things to consider when choosing a van tracking system:

Think about how many vehicles you have
More than one vehicle counts as a fleet, so make sure you’re looking at fleet trackers rather than individual systems.

What are you hoping to achieve with the system?
Do you want to reduce fuel costs, plan routes or keep in touch with drivers? Think about what your business would benefit most from before investing.

There are some key features you’ll be needing to track your vehicles, including:
Real-time monitoring, safety analytics, driver behaviour analysis and fleet notifications.

Budget
As with any business decision, budget is a key consideration. Prices vary significantly depending on the type of system and its features.

Once you’re ready to start looking for a tracking system, there are a wide variety of manufacturers and models to choose from. Different fleet management systems offer a wide range of different features. For more information, here’s a helpful comparative guide on the best vehicle tracking systems.


Van tracking: a case study

Since installing van tracking devices, small business: Oakleaf Commercial Services has noted a 30% reduction in harsh braking and acceleration and annual reported savings of over £9,500 in fleet fuel costs. Plus, a 50% reduction in unnecessary vehicle idling has occurred since installing vehicle tracking devices into their vans.

“I can’t imagine us operating without our tracking system. As responsible managers, we want and need the information it gives us.”

Keith Burgess, executive business manager, Oakleaf Commercial Services.


Van tracking: a case study

Since installing van tracking devices, small business: Oakleaf Commercial Services has noted a 30% reduction in harsh braking and acceleration and annual reported savings of over £9,500 in fleet fuel costs. Plus, a 50% reduction in unnecessary vehicle idling has occurred since installing vehicle tracking devices into their vans.

“I can’t imagine us operating without our tracking system. As responsible managers, we want and need the information it gives us.”

Keith Burgess, executive business manager, Oakleaf Commercial Services.


Next steps: compare van trackers

The information on this page should give you a springboard of ideas so you know what to look for when purchasing van trackers for your fleet. To find out more, and to compare tailored quotes, it’s advisable to speak directly to suppliers to find the right tracking solution for your individual business needs and review a collection of quotes.

To compare top UK van tracking quotes today, simply complete the form at the top of this page. This process is free, quick and easy, and it could help your business to save both time and money. Or, for more information, take a look at our page detailing the best vehicle tracking systems here.


Van tracking: the FAQs

How accurate is van tracking?

A tracking device that uses a GPS system will accurate to a three metre radius of the vehicle. This depends on the type of tracker – whether it transmits live data or stores the data before transmitting.

How do GPS tracking devices work?

GPS trackers provide real-time updates by emitting signals to be picked up by the GPS satellite network.The satellite then relays the signals to the cloud server. From there, the information is displayed on a computer program or mobile app used by fleet managers.

What are the benefits of GPS van tracking for businesses?

• Optimise deployment of fleet, facilitating reduced downtime and improved levels of reliability

• GPS tracking improves the vehicle security of your fleet, reducing insurance premiums and allowing you to re-trace the van in case of theft

•Greater safety for drivers and more precise route planning



Poppy Mortiboys-Harrison is a writer for startups.co.uk. Having previously worked on projects for Jaguar Land Rover, her background in automotive advertisement comes in handy as she’s now our expert in fleet management. Plus, when it comes to dealing with digital marketing and card payment services, Poppy’s our go-to girl.

When she’s not searching for exciting startups, or dreaming of delicious puns to spice up her copy, Poppy can be found nurturing a passion for spoken word poetry or cooking up a storm in the kitchen.