Rentalcars.com

A car rental web application portal

Situation

As its popularity grows, so too does the requirements of its customers. As Rentalcars.com became the world’s leader in online car rental services, new trends started to develop and with them new opportunities. The rise of the “urban renters” - urbanites who prefer to rent a car for short periods rather than own a car outright - meant an ever-growing demand in downtown and suburban areas.

The ability to tap into this new market and offer customers the flexibility and choice they wanted was now a new challenge. Typically, Rentalcars.com operates through tightly integrating its online platform with the inventory management systems of global car rental brands. However, the distribution of these partners is skewed towards airports.

Meeting this increasing customer demand outside of traditional airport locations required Rentalcars.com to recruit local independent car rental operators. However, these operators have a myriad of operating systems and often negligible in-house IT support, making integration to the Rentalcars.com platform effectively impossible.

Solution

Wyoming and Rentalcars.com spent 6 months designing, researching and refining Marketplace, a web application portal that would provide independent car rental operators access to the Rentalcars.com platform.

Early in the UX research it became apparent that independent operators had little previous experience of using online business applications, which meant a perception of complexity or ambiguity could easily put businesses off signing up. Considerable time and effort was invested in the design of MVP to iteratively identify and remediate non-intuitive language, design and functional artifacts.

The result is a beautifully simple step-by-step onboarding process that leverages the user’s prime motivation of “more bookings” to encourage registration completion. The first part of the Marketplace registration process requires users to enter their business address. Subsequently, via integration to Rentalcars.com search data, Marketplace provides a view of rental car demand in the user’s area.

Once registered, Marketplace provides users an intuitive UI that enables full control of listed vehicles, prices, discounts and extras.

We created the video below to reflect the value proposition. It deals with explaining the pressures in the industry and how Marketplace can be platform to help mitigate those pressures.

Outcome

 

Marketplace MVP was launched in the UK in 2017. The 12-month registration targets were exceeded within the first 4 months post-launch and the application is now live in 4 countries and a staged global roll-out is under way.

Initial supplier feedback for Marketplace was incredibly positive. One of the very first businesses to sign-up remarked:

"Until now we’ve been unable to connect with brokers. Marketplace is easy to use and I’m able to keep more cars moving, more of the time. I now have reservations from customers that I simply could not get before I joined.”

The Marketplace portal was quickly endorsed by other suppliers to the UK independent car rental market, including United Rental Group, Practical and Kia Rentals. All of these have recommended Marketplace to their respective rental car clients on the basis of both its usability and utility.

Visit the Marketplace site

 

Rentalcars.com Marketplace site
Marketplace mobile view