The graph inclines towards the negative scale for the on-demand taxi and transportation sector in Europe. Yes, while it is hard to believe, the industry is passing through one of its gloomy phases. With two quarters of 2020 spent on battling the pandemic and saving human lives, nations have decided enough is enough. The lockdown regulations are done and dusted, and the ‘new’ normal awaits. Will the European taxi market regain its top spot?
Although the sector is negatively impacted due to the pandemic situation, the need for entrepreneurs to venture into the everlasting taxi industry has remained, more or less, the same. With that being said, if you’re an entrepreneur eyeing to make your presence, are you ready with strategies that make your taxi business COVID-19 safe?
By the end of this blog, you’ll have a detailed overview of COVID-19’s impact on the European ride-hailing market. Besides, you’ll get to know specific safety strategies to implement while launching your ride-hailing app amid this outbreak situation.
The European Market and the COVID-19 Impact
According to Businesswire, the global ride-hailing market will generate $117.33 billion by 2021. While the number sounds humongous, the COVID-19 pandemic has restricted the market growth by 2.1%.
The lockdown norms in Europe have constrained the sector’s activities to almost 80%. With governments relaxing restrictions, the market is forecasting a resurrection in the new normal.
The government has enforced a 10-day self-quarantine measure to all people returning from the ‘Red’ zone, a.k.a, high-affected zones.
With European experts opining not to fly abroad unless it is an absolute necessity, public transportations have resumed but with one exception – mandatory face masks & gloves. The existing competitors have also come up with unique strategies to tackle the situation.
Top players and their enticing strategies
Bolt (Formerly Taxify)
This European ride-hailing giant, formerly known as Taxify, is one of Europe’s fastest-growing companies, according to Financial Times. With various taxi companies laying off employees as a measure to tackle expenses, this company has managed to sail past the lay-off phase unaffected. The firm has raised €100 million amid the pandemic situation. Managing a massive staff number of 1400 employees globally is no easy feat, especially there’s no turnaround. This taxi company has made it a possibility.
The company plans to expand its operations in the scooter-sharing & e-scooter segment. With people demanding self-drive vehicles, this strategy can pay off pretty well.
The company, formerly known as Hailo and myTaxi, rebranded itself into FreeNow in 2019. FreeNow is considered one of the largest vehicles for hire companies in the European sector. The company has recently initiated the ‘eco’ booking facility in Dublin. Focusing on Green transport can turn the wind towards this European company, increasing people’s tendency to conserve environmental degradation.
Several other players in Europe have tweaked their business model a little, focusing not only on ride-hailing but also on flourishing delivery services. The situation provides a win-win strategy, with delivery service providers struggling to cope with the people’s demands.
Organize your system to tackle COVID-19
With people preparing to face the situation, it is time for entrepreneurs to gear up and launch a perfectly safe ride-hailing app. People prefer private taxi rides over congested public transport. As a result, ride-hailing apps will finally get to experience the wind turning towards their sides. However, people are spoilt for choices here. The one taxi app that provides the best safety standards gets to survive, succeed, and sustain. Let’s discuss some safety add-ons worth-considering here,
Restricting passenger count
Bringing social distancing into the picture, it is advisable to restrict the passenger count to either two or three. This way, the entire community feels safe in moving forward.
Go online checklist
In the view of ensuring safety, it is ideal for both parties to answer a questionnaire regarding COVID-19 symptoms. This way, only those individuals who are completely normal are allowed to provide/avail services.
Face mask recognition software
With an app overtaking proceedings from a supervisor, you cannot expect an administration to verify if the drivers are wearing face masks. Let AI do the task of recognizing face masks, ensuring that every driver of the community wears masks before accepting rides from customers.
Safety ratings and reviews
One of the best ways to regulate affairs in a taxi app is to hear customer pain points and resolve them at the earliest. There’s no better way to enhance your service quality that consumer feedback. Hear out customers regarding your drivers’ safety standards, and do not hesitate to remove those who do not abide by community guidelines.
Option to cancel rides
Levy no cancellation charges to those users or drivers who feel the situation is unsafe to provide/avail rides. This act provides a sense of security and freedom for both parties.
These are some of the top strategies worth-implementing in your taxi application.
Focus on these priority areas
The taxi business in a post-COVID-19 world can be quite challenging if you don’t get the fundamentals right. We’ve curated a list of high-priority areas that needs the utmost care to keep your taxi business afloat. These areas include,
SaaS model can be the way out
In case you’re finding it difficult to aggregate multiple drivers, opt for the SaaS (Software as a Service) model. This way, you can reach out to cab agencies and public transit operators and take their business online. By doing so, you rent out your platform for a consistent income. Amid the pandemic situation, if you prefer a stable income source, try this trendsetting SaaS model.
Establish a Glocal approach (Global+local)
While it is wise to start your business hyper-locally, you need to expand your horizons to build positive brand value. Adopt a glocal response, wherein you make a concentric approach, starting from local and widening your horizons across boundaries.
A satisfied driver = Happy customer
There’s no point in arguing the fact that most on-demand apps are customer-centric apps. However, there’s a need to maintain an innate relationship with drivers. Introducing a feedback system for drivers can come in handy. Besides, lowering the commission scale during unforeseen circumstances like the pandemic can help you gain the trust of the driver community, paving the way for everlasting sustainability.
A user-friendly app can do wonders!
In developing the app, many entrepreneurs focus on an elite few, leaving behind a majority of users. Introducing complexity in the app design can be a grave mistake, considering the market’s neck-to-neck competition. A simple and minimalistic app interface, guiding users to book taxis, can be the best UI/UX. Hence, developing a cutting-edge Uber clone app, never miss out on integrating a seamless and informative interface.
Appdupe enables you to have a competitive edge
With almost every taxi app beginning from square one after lockdown restrictions, all you need is an instant push to leap forward and gain an irreplaceable position among the audience. In case you’re wondering how to achieve that ‘extra’ ingredient, we, at Appdupe, are a tap away. With our expertise spanning over a decade, we can provide you a highly reliable COVID-19 safe taxi app based on your requirements.
Our solutions are cost-effective, time-conserving, and highly scalable, providing you access to unrestricted revenue in the shortest possible time.
The taxi sector is considered a pioneer for on-demand apps. Although experiencing a decline in the initial phases of the COVID-19 era, there’s a renaissance knocking the doors of the evergreen sector. The scenario provides an ideal level playing field for established and emerging taxi apps.
Stay ahead of your rivals with Appdupe’s exclusive taxi app solutions available for instant launch!
Looking to startup a taxi app in the post-COVID-19 era for Europe
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