If you’re considering getting into the vehicle sharing business, you probably already know the very basics of what you need to do before you start. You’ll need to understand your customer’s needs, decide on a location, choose which vehicles to buy and - last but most certainly not least - choose which software provider to launch with.
But which software provider should be allowed to have the pleasure of powering your brand-new fleet? It’s a tough call, and it can be a deciding factor in the success of your future business. That’s why we broke down the five things you should look for in your vehicle sharing software provider below.
1. Your vehicle sharing software provider should offer a white label, user-friendly app for riders.
It’s easy to forget that your success as a future car, scooter or bike sharing business owner rides on how much your customers enjoy using your vehicles. Sure, picking the right vehicle manufacturer is important, but the magic glue truly holding your business together is your app. Well, it’s not your app, maybe - you didn’t build it yourself - but that’s no reason why it shouldn’t have your company’s logos and colors on it. Having a white label app is massively important for generating brand awareness.
Of course, looks aren’t everything, which is why we want to highlight one important point: your user app should follow the KISS principle. Simplicity is key. Users want to unlock their vehicles, ride in those vehicles, park them and forget about them. The more cluttered and confusing your app is, the more likely you are to lose a customer for life.
2. The operator dashboard should provide an in-depth overview and include ALL the details you need to manage your fleet effectively.
When we say all the details, we mean it. Managing user accounts is already a digital process, but that’s just one tiny aspect of what should be included in your “control panel”, or dashboard. A solid dashboard should include vehicle and booking/ride histories, marketing services such as promotion codes or coupons you’re currently offering, all user account information including the user’s name and contact info, pricing options and payments, and of course real-time vehicle data like locations and routes.
Ideally, you should be able to lock and unlock or mobilize your vehicles at the touch of a button. Damage and theft should of course be tracked, too - which brings us to our next point.
3. A good vehicle sharing software provider will always throw in analytics and reporting as part of the deal.
You might think that would be obvious, but not all vehicle sharing software providers include reporting as part of the package. If you’re going to be collecting useful data like most-traveled routes or the length and distance of an average ride, it only makes sense to be able to use that data to your advantage. Data that’s presented to you in an easily digestible format and still gives you enough information to base your business decisions on is an absolutely crucial component of any good software program.
Being able to view multiple damage reports, as just one example, can help you make predictions about when your vehicles will need to go into the shop or be repaired before they actually break down. That’s useful information for anybody who wants to stay one step ahead of the competition.
4. If your software provider doesn’t have a proven, global track record, can you really trust them to help you grow your business?
Really, this might be the most important question of all. It this doesn’t just apply to software providers, but rather every partner you’re considering doing business with. Do they have a list of clients or some big names in the industry that they’re working with already? If not, they might just be starting out - or they might not be very good at what they do.
The harsh reality is such that if they’re not talking about the clients they have or if they don’t have any international clients that they’re working with, they’re probably not prepared to help your business grow on a global scale. Always make sure you ask about current clients when talking to a sales rep from your software provider of choice. If they change the subject, consider it a red flag.
5. Make sure your vehicle sharing software provider can offer you the complete package.
By complete package we mean software, analytics AND hardware - an all-in-one solution. There’s no point wasting time and resources looking for separate analytics and/or hardware providers if your software provider can supply you with all the tools you need to get your business successfully launched. That being said, if you pay attention to the other points mentioned above, you’ll probably end up considering a vehicle sharing software provider who offers a complete package deal anyway.
There you have it, the five things to look for when selecting a vehicle sharing software provider. If you still have some questions or you’d like more information on how to start a vehicle sharing company, we’re here to help!