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According to research, millennials don’t want to buy vehicles when they can rent one. Uber’s success is a testimony to this statement. A bike rental business is another uber-like opportunity for enthusiastic entrepreneurs. If you are one of those entrepreneurs who are thinking about setting up an online bike rental startup, then this guide will help you.
According to an estimate, the global motorcycle rental industry is estimated to reach $265.9 million by 2027. While in some markets like the U.S., motorcycles are a luxury, in some markets like South Asia, bikes are a necessity to maneuver traffic.
Like cars, the sharing economy is expected to bloom in bikes also. This shift in consumer behavior from buying to renting will give rise to a sprawling bike renting market. If you are one of those savvy entrepreneurs who have a bright idea of starting a bike rental startup, then this blog will help you in your endeavor.
The success of a bike rental business depends on how well you are able to manage your decision around a few critical factors. We have discussed these critical factors in brief below.
Location is one of the most important factors that you need to consider before you set up a motorbike rental business. Mostly your customers are tourists; hence it is better to set up the physical locations from where people can rent bikes near tourist hotspots. Choose locations near biking trails and landmarks that interest tourists to ensure decent traction for your bike rental business.
Competitor analysis will tell you how strong or weak your competitors are in the area where you want to operate. Find out gaps in their service and try to build your value proposition around these gaps. Through detailed competitor analysis, you will be able to zero in on the kind of bikes and equipment that you need to offer and the price points that you need to keep to attract customers.
The type of bikes that you want to offer on your bike rental startup will largely depend on the location and the demand of the users. For instance, offering mountain bikes in a hilly tourist spot can prove to be a great idea. Analyze your location, the user demand, and then offer bikes accordingly to maximize the chance of your bikes being rented. Start with a small number of bikes and then grow slowly as you learn the nuance of your target market.
An hourly charge is often the best way to charge for your bikes. For people who want to keep bikes for a longer duration, you can also charge on a daily basis. You can keep differential prices depending on the time of the year. For instance, you can keep more prices during the tourist season in a tourist spot and lower prices in the off-season. Similarly, you can charge more on weekends as compared to weekdays. Regarding prices, you need to strike a balance between the user’s expectations and your profitability to build a viable bike and scooter rental business.
You will need a team to support your bike rental business. As the business scales, so will the number of your team members. You can start with some basic team members, as shown below.
You will require bike repair mechanics that can handle both the periodic maintenance of the bike and also service a bike that has broken down mid-way. Some might argue that you can avail service of third-party mechanics. While this is true to some extent, understand that in the case of third-party service providers, you will need to depend on them and cannot expect that the mechanics will always be available whenever you require them. The bike downtime due to the lack of availability of mechanics can eat into your profits. Apart from this, think about the reputation lost if you are unable to service a bike that breaks down mid-way. These are the reasons why we suggest you hire full-time dedicated mechanics for your bike rental business.
To gain traction fast, your bike rental business will require the services of a marketing team. As marketing is a continuous process, it is best to hire full-time marketing professionals who can handle both online as well as offline marketing for your bike rental startup.
Customer service team
It is essential to provide decent customer service to ensure that the people who rent your bike have someone whom they can talk with to address their issues. Bikes can break down midway, and your customers might require help sometimes. The customers might want to cancel their bookings or extend their bookings by a couple of days. Your customer service can prove to be the difference between you and your competitors. Hence it is essential to have a dedicated customer service team who can resolve the queries of your customers fast.
A major decision that you need to take when you start a bike rental business is the kind of business model that you need to choose. The following are the two major types of bike rental business models that you can consider.
The aggregator model
In this model, you act as an aggregator of bikes and do not own any bike yourself. Think of this as an Uber for bikes. People who want to rent out their bikes can put up their bikes on your portal, and people who want these bikes on rent can avail them from your platform. The best part of the aggregator model is that you do not need to invest money into purchasing the bikes yourself. The disadvantage of the aggregator model is that you lose the kind of bikes that come up on your platform, and you also lose control over the quality of bikes being rented.
Own a bike fleet
The other thing that you can consider is owning a fleet of bikes yourself. You can purchase the bike according to the target market and earn rent on these bikes. The best thing with owning the bike fleet yourself is that you get to control the quality of your offering and also earn the entire rental revenue instead of sharing with anyone else like in the aggregator model. The disadvantage of owning the bike fleet yourself is that you need to invest in building an entire fleet of bikes.
Analyze your market conditions and the funding at your disposal to select the most suitable bike rental business model.
One of the most important decisions that you can take to help take your business to the next level is to go digital. You can build a website or a mobile app to allow your customers to book a bike online. By going online, you will expand the reach of your bike rental app exponentially as the customers from all over the world will be able to reach you easily. A mobile app can prove to be a worthy investment option as compared to a website.
This is because most of the users spend a considerable time on their smartphones, and on smartphones,the user interface of a mobile app is much better as compared to a website. You don’t need to fret if you are not a technical person and do not know how to build a bike rental app. Just hire the best app development company in the market and they will take care of the bike rental app development process.
As per a report, around 83% of the world’s population uses smartphones today. Another report states that people spend around 33% of their waking time on mobile apps. These two statistics can tell you the enormous potential of a mobile app. A bike rental app can help you maximize the reach of your bike rental startup. Your users can book their favorite bikes from any location using your bike rental app. What you do need to know is the kind of app that you want. Conduct a thorough market research and consult your app developers to know in detail the kind of mobile app that you will need. This way you will ensure that your motorbike rental app development process is finished without any hiccups.
You will get the following benefits when you decide to invest in a bike rental mobile app
As compared to booking through a website, a bike rental app can provide a much better user interface to the users. Through a bike rental app, the users will be able to easily book their favorite bike without any help or assistance. You can even personalize the experience by providing customized notifications to customers based on their preferences.
It is easy for the customers to get support through the in-app live chat and call support system. Through the in-app support system, the users can easily get in touch with the support team and resolve their issues effectively.
By going for motorbike rental app development, you can eliminate a major hassle from your bike rental business. For a bike rental startup, it is necessary to check whether the people who want to rent a bike have any past criminal history or not. This is done to ensure the safety of the bike. Using an app, the bike renters can easily verify their credentials by uploading a pic of the relevant documents through the smartphone camera. In case you are using the aggregator model wherein you just act as an intermediary between the people who want to rent a bike and the people who own one, then you will have to verify the credentials of the bike owners also. The bike owners can also upload a picture of the relevant documents and verify their credentials using the bike rental app.
In case the bike meets with an accident, many insurance companies allow the users to make a claim through their smartphones. The users have to click the pictures of the accident and provide the necessary details to help the insurance company process the claim. You can include a similar feature in your bike rental app and tie up with the insurance company to make the claims settlement process smoother in case of a mishap.
A motorbike app can help you manage your bike repairs easily. Every bike has a maintenance schedule, and you can punch in the data regarding the periodic maintenance schedule of the bike. This way, you can ensure that all your bikes are always in prime condition. Using the mobile app, the users could also know when the last service was conducted on the bike and choose accordingly. This way, the users can also gain confidence that their bike won’t break down mid-way.
Users would like to have a hassle-free cancellation and refund process. This is because if, due to some situation, they want to cancel the ride, then they won’t like it if the refunds are not processed immediately. A simple and speedy refunds and cancellation process can attract more users to your platform. Through a bike rental app, you can make the refunds and cancellation process easy and fast. Moreover, you can also assign the canceled bike to someone else who wants it and ensure that your bike does not sit idle for long.
Making money is the ultimate objective of most mobile apps, and this is true for a bike & scooter rental app also. There are various monetization methods for making money through a bike rental app. We have listed below the primary ones.
To ensure the success of your bike rental app, you will need to include certain app features into the app. We have outlined a few of them for your reference.
For bike owners (aggregator model)
To succeed in your bike rental business, you need to assess the market conditions perfectly. You need to analyze the bike rental business model that you need to select and consider the factors that can play an important role in determining the success of your bike rental business. Once you are clear with your business plan, you can approach a bike rental app development company to build a bike rental app that fulfills your requirements.
We at Prismetric have more than a decade of experience in delivering high-quality mobile apps according to the customer’s requirements. We would be happy to assist you in your endeavor of building a profitable motorbike rental business. Please contact us for any requirements.