The online rental industry continues to expand into new niches as the customer’s desire for rental goods grows. One such niche that has seen tremendous growth in recent years is the online car rental business.
The global automobile rental market is predicted to grow to 250 plus million customers by 2023, as per the report by Statistica. This growth could be due to various factors, including an increase in consumer purchasing potential, an increase in the number of car owners who earn money by renting their cars on an online marketplace, and of course, an increase in the travel and tourism industry.
It’s tempting to learn how to establish an online car rental business, given how many individuals are leaning towards the renting rather than buying approach in the automotive industry. And this is why we have come up with a post that will guide you on the steps one needs to take in order to build a successful online car rental business.
Also read: 10 Automotive Jobs For Car Lovers
4 Steps to start Online Car Rental Business
Step One: Research to Plan your Business
The first thing that you need to do before laying out a business plan is to conduct research. This is because there are many competitors in the market that you’re planning to invest in. You must assess their core demographic, existing clientele, geographic region, revenue plan, and, quite obviously, the characteristics of their website.
It will be difficult for you to survive if you plan to start your car rental business with a platform that already exists. It would be best if you come up with a business plan that offers cutting-edge functionality and, at the same time, a better customer experience in the competitive online world. To do so, you must first gain a thorough understanding of the market, the competitors, and obviously, your prospective clients’ mindset and preferences.
Step Two: Choose a Business Model
There are two types of business models when it comes to starting your online car rental business: Business-to-Consumer and Peer-to-Peer.
1. Business-to-Consumer (B2C) Model:
You can establish a car rental business wherein you interact directly with customers using this model. Customers can book a car for rent from the list of vehicles available in your inventory. They can reserve the car they want for a day or more, fill out the necessary details, and pick up or get the key delivered for their ride.
2. Peer-to-Peer (P2P) Model:
This is the most popular and versatile business model for launching a car rental business. These kinds of enterprises rely heavily on websites. What’s amazing about this business model is that you do not need to own a vehicle inventory. That is why this business model is so tempting to new entrepreneurs. The approach of this model is that you allow car owners to register on your online platform to rent out their cars. Thus you are relieved from the overhead cost of the inventory and generate a lot of money through commissions.
Step Three: Category of Cars
You might want to give your users a variety of car options to choose from. Some automobile rental companies, for example, offer cars only for special occasions and also rent out premium cars. And then some businesses rent out exotic convertibles, classic cars, sports cars, and other different ranges of cars to their customers. Thus it is up to you what you want to sell. You might choose a single dedicated car model type to target a certain segment of the market. Alternatively, you can include a wide range of cars in your marketplace. In general, most companies favor this approach because allowing more car owners to register in their marketplace would benefit their business. It will allow you to expand your car inventory without actually owning it and providing clients with a lot more options.
Step Four: Creating Online Presence
You will have to set an online footprint if you’re planning to start an online car rental business. And the best way to do this is by creating a Website. Your website should have a distinct set of tools and technologies depending on your business model. WordPress is a great platform to build a website for your car rental business as it has a stunning theme collection for every kind of business. For example, suppose you choose to operate in the peer-to-peer business model. In that case, you’ll require a car rental or a car dealer WordPress theme that includes features for visitors, car owners, admins, incentive management, payments, and more. Furthermore, you will require specific tools for car proprietors to register for renting their vehicle on your online marketplace. Fortunately, you’re good to go, as WordPress has tons of solutions for both the B2B and P2P marketplace model on its platform.
Must-have Features of a good WordPress theme for your car rental business
By now, you must be aware of the steps you need to take to start a successful car rental business and how you can go digital with it. The next thing you must know is the type of features you should look for while choosing a theme for your WordPress website. We have curated a list of the best features and functionalities that will help you shortlist one.
- User-friendly Dashboard
- Attractive Inventory layout
- Calendar for Availability
- Booking or cancellation
- Search Filters
- Reviews and Ratings
- Easy registration
- Vehicle Comparison
- Listing management
- Revenue management
An online car rental business is one of the most challenging businesses out there. If planned well, you will set a prominent mark in this industry in just no time. And with the help of a car rental website, you have an amazing opportunity to generate the best outcomes for your business online.
Once you have decided on a theme and launched your website, the rest is about effective marketing and promotion techniques to acquire your share in the market. And you need to know that your marketing strategies will largely depend on the type of business model you choose.
For example, you will have to target the customers directly if you choose the B2C business model. In contrast, with the P2P business model, your marketing approach should target both the car owners and the customers.