From emerging to largest well-established businesses are associated with a ubiquitous problem and its smart and innovative solution. Car Rental is one of those solutions which have not only become a great source of convenience for the users but also raised a business worth billions. Ever since car rental services made their debut on smartphone platforms, they are spreading like wildfire. The reason behind the success of this business model is the basic solution that offers convenience to the customers. Imagine a scenario where you are going for a family trip to another, wouldn’t it be convenient for you to have a car ready for you and your family at the airport?
This blog is dedicated to entrepreneurs who want to build a successful business model in the car rental business. In this blog, we will cover every aspect of a car rental app development from market size to app features and from various business models to the cost of car rental app development.
Market of Car Rental App
Statista projects that by the year 2022, the revenue of passenger car rental and leasing in the USA will grow to approximately USD $43.1 billion. For contrast, according to Auto Rental News, the USA car rental industry bagged USD $28.63 billion.
The car rental industry is not only consistent but it is also growing steadily. On the other hand, the revenue of the market is clearly indicating that there are enough opportunities in the pool to start a sustainable car rental app.
There are myriad of well-established car rental application already thriving in the market right now and they are making millions every year. Just to give you an idea, according to Auto Rental News, the full year revenue of leading car rental service in the USA, Hertz, was USD $8.8 billion in 2017. It is no brainer to speculate that the growth and stability or car rental market opens the gates for entrepreneurs from around the world for lucrative ventures.
Trending Business Models of Car Rental App
Since the automotive industry is blooming in its all glory. The pool of opportunities itself has been attracting business competition from around the globe. As a result, entrepreneurs discovered several business models to stay away from the competition in order to get a bigger piece of the pie.
Here is the list of some of the most famous and successful business model that you may choose for your car rental mobile application.
- Corporate Car Rental Services
Corporate car rental is a dedicated car rental service for corporates that require frequent car rides and sophisticated chauffeur services. These services are exclusive to corporates and rides are fixed according to the pre-set schedule of corporates.
- Self-Drive Car Rentals Services
This business model is for those customers who do not want to be chauffeured around and take pleasure in driving cars by themselves. This business model is getting famous among customers while providing cars of their choices with affordable car rental prices.
- Out Station Car Rental Services
For tour and travel, this outstation car rental business model is perfect. This business model is a convenient solution for both businesses and family that need to commute to distant places with the freedom to go anywhere they want.
- Local Car Rental Services
For airport pick up and drop or a short trip around the city, everything is covered within this business model of cart rental app. This is the most convenient solution for customers around the world.
- P2P Car Rental Services
P2P or Peer-to-Peer car rental business model does not require car fleet or assigned drivers. Anyone who has a car can avail himself or herself for this service. It makes a larger community and helps people to save money on their own trips as well.
- Long Term Car Rental Services
As the name suggests this car rental service is for those who require a car for an extended period of time such as months or a year. This is a great service for those who need a car for a temporary period or prefer renting over purchasing.
These are some of the most popular business models out there. However, creating a new business model and raising money completely depends on your vision and the expert mobile app developers who will help you to fulfill your vision into a successful and lucrative business model. However, if you want to go with the existing business models then you must offer to the customers that no one is offering in their car rental mobile apps.
Here comes the biggest key point for any successful mobile application. Inbuilt features of a car rental app will provide more convenience to your customers and they will prefer your app over any other application in the market. If these features decide the dominance of any application like car rental application.
Let’s see what are some of the essential features of a car rental mobile app that are to be considered while developing a winning car rental application.
Features of a Car Rental Mobile App
Since the end user is not only the customer, the end users are customers, drivers/hosts, and admin. Therefore, let’s understand these features separately.
Features for Customer
- Easy Login
A login portal that can be accessed with the help of just an email ID or phone number simply adds extra stars in the user convenience column of a car rental application.
- Choose Desired Car
“Choosing” gives a sense of freedom to the customer of a car rental application. Therefore, if a car rental app allows users to choose their preferred car then this could be a major selling point for a business model.
- Ride Scheduling
Leaving tomorrow early in the morning or you have so much thing in your plate that you might forget to book a ride to the airport then you can simply schedule a ride with the help of a few taps and voila!
- Manage Booking
A user of a car rental app can manage all his/her booking at one place within the app. It saves time and increases productivity by keeping customer-level management systematically arranged.
- Cost Estimation
For a service provider application like car rental app, pricing is a crucial point that must be regulated effectively. Therefore, offering a cost estimation feature within the application helps customers to check the price even before taking a ride.
- Navigation and Tracking
A must-have feature that makes commute time saving and pleasant by accurately navigating customers to their destination.
- Doorstep Car Delivery
For car rental services like Self Driving offers the car to the customer at their doorsteps. This feature seems a little step but it saves efforts and time of the customers.
- Multiple Payment Options
Having multiple payment options in the car rental application enables all customers with various preferable payment methods to do payments flawlessly.
- Reward and Referral Programs
Reward and referral programs motivate customers to share and use the application more and more in order to earn more reward points which can be converted into attractive discount offers. It is a really beneficial feature of car rental apps to boost approach among potential customers.
- Push Notifications
Push notifications give important updates and alerts to the customers so that they never miss any update related to their car rental.
Features for Driver/Host
- Easy Login
The feature of easy login with an email ID or phone number is also available to the divers or hosts as well.
- Check and Receive Request
The host or driver can check all booking requests at once and then can accept the one that seems suitable.
- Receive Payment
This feature allows a driver to receive payment from the customer via car rental application itself.
- Trip Details
This feature gives the ability to check the trip details like pick up point, destination, journey time and shortest way with less traffic, etc.
- Driver Dashboard
This dedicated dashboard for the driver shows all the essential information to the driver such as total completed rides, upcoming ride, total income, received feedback, etc.
- Receive Feedback
A driver’s reputation is maintained by these feedbacks. Customers choose drivers according to their feedbacks and ratings. Hence, this feature allows drivers to receive feedback from the customers.
- Expense Log
A host or driver has this expense log which keeps the log of all expenses like toll tax and other on-duty expenses which helps them to get reimbursement.
Navigation comes as a handy feature for the drivers by enabling them to navigate to the customer’s destination without getting confused in the ways.
Features for Admin
- Dedicated Dashboards
One of the crucial features for an admin is Dedicated Dashboard. This feature shows all analytic and data to the admin separated by the categories.
- Manage Fleet
This feature allows admins to manage car fleets remotely via the app itself.
- User Management
From this feature, admins can manage customers, drivers/hosts, and sub-admins and keep their activities under surveillance.
- Fare Management
According to the demand and supply, admins can manage the fare for the car rental service accordingly.
- App Analytics
App analytics offers various types of essential data, which can be used to enhance the business and app operation, to the admins.
- Income Analytics
All the incoming and outgoing funds can be tracked and managed under this feature of a car rental mobile app.
- Content Management System (CMS)
A content management system (CMS) is an intuitive and convenient tool for admins. It helps admins to manage available content all over the car rental application.
- Customer Relation Management (CRM)
Features like CRM help admins to maintain a lasting relationship with the customers of car rental application with the help of email newsletters, loyalty programs and many more.
- Corporate Billing
Corporate billing is the exclusive feature for the corporates where they can manage all the car rental expenses.
- Surge Charges
To maintain the demand and supply ratio, surge charge feature can be used by the admins.
- Document Upload
This feature becomes very useful in Peer-to-Peer car rental service. With the help of this feature, the owner of a car can check and verify the license and other documents before renting the car.
- In-App Camera
The in-app camera allows customers to capture the image of their documents that to be uploaded for booking a car.
- In-App Voice/Video Call
While booking a car of their choice, the customer may want to check the interior and exterior of the car just to be sure. This feature helps them to check the condition of the car.
- Revenue Model
How car rental application brings money in the bank is one of the most important topics of this entire blog. So it is time to talk about some of the famous and successful revenue models of car rental application.
- Having Own Car Fleet
This business model requires significant capital to kick off the business. As this business requires having own car fleet. In addition, assigning professional drivers is also necessary to manage the business. The earning comes from the profit earned from the fare prices of car rental. Businesses like Hertz, are following this business model and they are making billions every year.
- Commission Based
In this model, the professional drivers with their own cars are hired and they are provided a car rental application platform from which they can receive rental requests and earn money. In addition, anyone who has a car can also put their car on rest to earn some extra bucks. From this earned money 15% – 30% part goes to the car rental app company. Currently, Turo is working on this business model.
Required Team Structure for Car Rental App Development
It would not be an exaggeration to say that behind every successful mobile app there are competent and experienced mobile app developers who turn ideas into a profitable business. While developing a car rental application that promotes itself, you just need to partner with a successful team or company of mobile app developers. To make the app available to a wider audience, it is wise to make the car rental app available on all mobile platforms like Android, and iOS and possibly wearables too.
For all the development of a car rental mobile app, the minimum team structure would look something like this,
- Project Manager
- Backend Developers
- UX/UI Designers
- Frontend Developers
- Android App Developers
- iOS App Developers
- QA Professionals
Required Tech Stack for Car Rental App Development
- Mobile platform – Android, iOS
- Real-time Analytics: IBM, Apple Flink, BigData, Cisco, Spark, Hadoop
- Database: Mail Chimp Integration, Postgress, HBase, MongoDB, Cassandra
- Payments: e-Wallets, Stripe, PayPal, Braintree
- Voice, SMS, & Phone Verification: Twilio, Nexmo
- Push Notifications: Push.io, Twilio
- Cloud Environment: Azure, Google, AWS
How much does it cost to develop a Car Rental Mobile App?
Figuring out the cost to develop a car rental mobile app is not as easy as it seems. There are factors that affect the overall cost by a huge margin. They are region, number of features and number of platforms (Android, iOS) for which the app is being built. Region affects the cost because of the varying hourly cost of developers around the globe. For example, the cost to hire a developer in the USA is USD $150 – $250 per hour, whereas in Europe it is USD $120 – $180 per hour. Surprisingly in India, the cost to hire a developer is USD $40 – $80 per hour. Not to be confused, the lower price does not indicate quality comprise. The difference in cost solely depends on the economic condition of a particular country.
The number of features also affect the price of car rental app development. So the overall cost cannot be estimated?
We can, for an MVP version of the car rental mobile app, which is built in India, it may cost somewhere around USD $15,000 – $30,000. However, the app development cost may go higher if you choose to include some advanced features and functionality into the app.
Rahul Mathur is the founder and managing director of ARKA Softwares, a company renowned for its outstanding mobile app development and web development solutions as well as specialized in Android and iOS app development. Delivering high-end modern solutions to all over the globe, Rahul takes pleasure in sharing his experiences and views on the latest technological trends.