Ride-hailing — reshaping transportation market without even knowing it
So what is ride-hailing? One can easily say this industry is nothing new. The concept describes services when a customer hires a driver and a vehicle to get from point A to point B.
All the companies providing such services, whether hiring a driver happens by hailing a taxi in the street, calling a dispatcher or (in the latest era) via an app, are ride-hailing companies.
So what’s so special about this industry if the whole idea of getting a lift and paying for it exists ever since transportation was invented?
The idea of “pay-as-you-go” in combination with mobile technology is what makes ride-hailing so particularly hot.
Think about the downfall of private car ownership. Think smarter mobility solutions for densely populated, traffic-polluted cities — and at the same time, for the always-hard-to-reach countryside. Think data-driven ride-hailing platforms able to satisfy human needs in goods and services just as fast as your internet connection works. Think of a sector expected to be worth $285 billion by 2030.
The global mobility market: reality & expectations
The global mobility market embraces all the transportation and transit services there are. The growth of this market is fueled by the world’s population growth, urbanization, and economic development.
However, the possibility of an extensional growth is restricted by environmental issues humanity is facing. That way, private car ownership, traditional city transportation and cargo delivery are to make space for new, smarter solutions. Diverse types of ride-sharing and ride-hailing businesses have emerged to change the transportation market.
Because of its game-changing potential, innovative (read: tech-driven) ride-hailing businesses attract major investments. Still thinking of how to start a company like Uber? Reconsider! Because it’s far not the most booming ride-hailing app anymore. Especially in rapidly developing regions such as Northern and Central Africa, Middle-East Asia, Latin America, the so-called “super apps” are making a ruckus.
So the initial question you should be asking yourself is not “How to start a taxi business?”. It’s rather “How do I want the local ride-hailing industry to work in 20 years? In 50 years?”.
At Onde, we’ve got clients who’ve figured it out. Starting as a taxi business, they managed to hit the trends and become leaders in their regions. Read up and get inspired!
Changing the future with your transport business ideas
There are several significant trends of the global ride-hailing industry a young uber-like company can profit from. Let’s have a look at how the most successful Onde clients are doing this.
Regional consolidation of big players
The consolidation in the automotive industry on one hand and the strong presence of ride-hailing giants in certain regions (Uber and Lyft in the US, Grab in Middle-East Asia, Yandex in Eastern Europe, Didi in China) on the other hand are definite. It is yet unclear what way state regulations of such oligopolies will develop.
Tech-driven ride-hailing is bringing the biggest changes in rapidly developing regions: Africa, Asia, Latin America.
Kaiian (Saudi Arabia) is one of the companies profiting from this trend. Starting from small towns, they managed to become one of the leading companies in the market just within a year.
Making the right social moves is what helps Kaiian to stay a king of the hill in the local ride-hailing industry. The latest move was launching an on-demand service for teaching women to drive — Almeny. Here’s what Bader Alarjani, Almeny CEO, tells:
“We want to be in the epicenter of social change here. Almeny is meant to solve gender discrimination problems. Thanks to the smart on-demand solution, the changes will be faster, more effectively. In 3 years, all women in Saudi Arabia will drive. We’ll help this happen”.
Satisfying multiple consumer needs via the same platform, super apps (Grab, Gojek to name a couple) are pioneering in transforming mobility and services delivery. At the same time, they gather massive amounts of data on consumer behavior.
Apps like that are changing the whole mobility ecosystems in the cities. How attractive it is, one platform for managing all the services you need — food delivery, reparations, health care, banking, you name it!
Some of our clients are already making the shift to providing other on-demand services than ride-hailing. Life One Assist is providing insurance, roadside assistance services and international travel assistance in El Salvador, Colombia, Guatemala, Nicaragua, and the USA. The world trend is telling us more apps of this type are coming to conquer the ride-hailing market.
Growth of data-driven businesses
Analytics of user's behavior, heatmaps, integral analytics of data gathered by the apps and websites — these are just a few examples of the trend. The future of ride-hailing is not only analytical, but it’s also massively data-driven.
Greenr Cabs is the first ride-hailing company in Malta operating with electric vehicles only. But it’s not the only thing Greenr is pioneering in. They also make use of elaborate integrated analytics to get a grip on user behavior and adjust their services accordingly.
Greenr monitors customer activity levels per city and throughout the day, keeps an eye on the most popular destinations and the localities where people order the cabs. They also thoroughly consider the number of corporate orders to see what business partnerships have the most potential.
Long story short, analytics bring your transport business further, bring in new ideas, and this trend will only grow stronger in the next couple of years.
Electric vehicles are the future. Autonomous fleets will follow
Electric vehicles are incredibly popular already. Take the example of Saytaxi in Albania. It has been providing ride-hailing services since 2014 and built quite a reputation. The company joined Onde platform willing to reduce the CO2-emissions. Since introducing the electric fleet, Saytaxi has achieved a 10x increase in orders. 70% of the current clients rather book an electric vehicle from the company.
Autonomous fleets promise to become the next big thing. The revenue pool of providing ride hailers with autonomous vehicles is expected to be $220 billion by 2030. Not only does this raise some questions about regulations and laws but it also promises to change the whole industry.
Further rise of digital marketing
Social media is there, and it’s not going to leave in any near future. For business owners and marketers, this only means one thing — digital marketing will get bigger than ever. With the internet being the main place where you meet your (potential) customers, do not expect to escape the whole digital rush.
Another part of this trend is a growing demand for app store optimization. The apps that are optimized for store placement are much easier to find and get higher numbers of installs than apps missing out on this trend.
Bahrain Taxi is one of the Onde clients profiting from a clever ASO strategy. Since getting their apps store optimized, the number of app installs has grown by 35% on Google Play and by 10% on App Store in just 2 months.
Networking all day, all night
Recent research shows investors access the ride-hailing industry predominantly via private routes. This means networking is the way to raise funds — and the best way to get emotionally-invested business partners.
Take the example of LEFA, an on-demand app for ride-hailing in Windhoek, Namibia. From their own experience, LEFA has learned that small and medium local businesses need a lot of support and facilitation, not necessarily easily granted by the government of financial institutions. So LEFA has launched a partnership campaign aimed at helping local businesses in transportation. The business partners are now friends, investors, and inspirators for each other.
LEFA is also attending as many international conferences on mobility, technology and innovations — because where else can you network as good as at conferences, right?
The global ride-hailing industry is eager for innovative, tech- and data-driven solutions. The sector is expected to be worth $285 billion by 2030. This means a lot of opportunities for those daring to dream of better mobility.
The largest trends in the ride-hailing industry are:
🌍 Regional consolidation of big players
📊 Data-driven decision making
💎 Boom of “super-apps” — multipurpose booking platforms
🤖 Advent of electric vehicles & automated fleets
🤳 Dominance of digital marketing
🕸 Growing importance of networking
The companies able to adapt their transport business ideas to these trends are the most likely to profit and make the future of ride-hailing truly glorious. As it deserves to be.