Recent technological advancements have made it possible for online bike rental businesses to thrive. As per a report published by Allied market research “The global bike rental market was valued at $2.1 billion in 2021, and is projected to reach $11.3 billion by 2031, growing at a CAGR of 18.5% from 2022 to 2031.”
While data from experts state multiple opportunities for entrepreneurs in renting bikes online, there are various factors that you need to consider before starting an online bike rental business. In this article, we guide you through a step-by-step approach to starting a bike rental business with an optimized strategy and possible revenue streams.
Initial Steps For Starting A Bike Rental Marketplace
Clear and on-ground business planning is necessary to turn your idea of renting bikes online into a profitable venture. For an online bike rental business, you can proceed with your market research by identifying the customer personas, checking the offerings of already existing players in the market, and preparing a questionnaire for your target customers. This will help you recognize the preferences of your prospects subsequent to which you can deliver a better experience to them.
Additionally, you can examine the reviews of existing businesses to find their shortcomings and bring out a strong alternative for the customers. Most online bike rental companies face issues while managing their inventory, monitoring suspicious users, and generating revenue. So, it becomes important for you to come up with a platform that grants complete access to manage the operations.
Furthermore, modules such as agreement management, advanced security management, and analyzing revenue streams can assist in preparing an efficient marketing strategy when planning the operations of your business. Detailed market research on these topics would help you in navigating through these issues when your business becomes operational.
Identifying Revenue Streams
Diversified revenue streams help in the stability of bike rental businesses during market fluctuations. By analyzing your market research, you can identify revenue-generating streams that can aid your business in becoming financially sustainable. Discussed below are some revenue generation methods that you can implement in your online bike rental business.
For an online bike rental marketplace, a rental commission from the bike owners who rent out their bikes is a prime source of revenue. The rental commission is a pre-decided percentage of the amount earned by the bike owner which is deducted from the rental income automatically by the platform.
Registration fee is a one-time payment for a fixed duration of time that can be charged by the platform to bike owners to list their bikes on the platform. This registration fee can be set according to the number of bikes to be listed by the owner. The registration fee can also be charged to the customers who rent the bikes from the website as platform charges.
The subscription model helps bike rental businesses gather revenue from both customers and vendors on the platform. You can provide subscriptions to your customers and offer them discounts in exchange for long-time rentals or exclusive festival offers. Similarly, you can offer a subscription plan to vendors that allow them unlimited listings with better exposure to the customers. Other privileges such as parking charges and rental insurance can also be included in the subscription.
Displaying ads on your platform can be your regular revenue stream if your platform has a significant volume of traffic. You can display visual ads of companies related to bikes and other rental accessories from relevant domains and charge them advertisement costs at competitive pricing. The relevant companies to advertise on your bike rental website can include bike insurance providers, bike cleaning and repair services, easy bike loans, and so on.
Different Ways to Kickstart A Bike Rental Marketplace
Selecting a viable approach to build a rental marketplace is crucial to a seamless experience for all stakeholders. There are three major approaches you can consider for building your rental platform. You can choose your technology solution to build an efficient rental business platform post finalizing the approaches mentioned below.
Choosing A Readymade Bike Rental Solution
Ready-made bike rental software is one of the best options that you can consider for building a bike rental marketplace for your business. The readymade software you choose should be fully customizable and must have modules that help in streamlining the rental operations across the platform. While there are multiple options available in the market, below is a small checklist of features you can consider while selecting ready-made bike rental software for your bike rental business.
Must-Have Features for a Readymade Bike Rental Marketplace Solution
- Inventory management
- Module for rental agreement and advance security deposit
- Payment gateway integration
- User management
- Bike inspection module for customers before the rental period starts
- Tiered pricing
- Add-on services module
Choosing a ready-made solution helps you in setting a bike rental business without investing a huge amount during initial phases of the business with no compromise in design as well as features.
Software as a Service (SaaS)
SaaS solutions which are quite similar to readymade rental software, come with pre-designed templates, which can be personalized as per business requirements. The bike rental website you get with a SaaS is hosted by the provider itself who also manages the code, server, and database of the end platform.
When selecting a SaaS solution for your rental business, always consider post-deployment support, software documentation, and all other features you would be requiring for your business operations. Though SaaS solutions for online businesses quickly adapt to the market, they have multiple drawbacks including monthly subscription charges, are not white-label (most of them), and also have strict platform policies to comply with.
Hiring a Custom Software Development Company
Custom software development as the name implies is an approach to building and deploying tailor-made software to suffice your bike rental business requirements. In this approach, the aspiring business owner submits the requirements to the custom software development company. The expert team after receiving the requirements analyzes them to share the proof of concept with the client before proceeding. A custom software development approach to building a bike rental marketplace offers innovation and flexibility in the features as well as design, making it a best practice to get the job done more aesthetically. However, getting software that is tailored exactly to your requirements takes a lot of time (6-24 months on average) and can be expensive.
The online bike rental market is competitive, so you will require efficient planning and marketing strategy to stay ahead of the curve. Hence, it becomes imperative for entrepreneurs to choose the right approach to kick start their online bike rental business. Considering the methods mentioned above, choosing a ready-made bike rental software like YoRent can be considered the most suitable way. It is a convenient and cost-effective solution that can be customized as per your business requirements.