Ever thought that the only reason you own a car is for those times you really need it?
"Selling consumers more vehicle than they need has been the mainstream auto industry's business model for most of the past century," Wall Street Journal (8/19/08).
As globalisation transforms the world the business’ that seem to capitalise the most are those that understand what they are really selling. Automotive manufacturers don’t sell cars, they sell personal transport! And as automotive sales fall members of car-sharing program Zipcar soar.
How does it work?
Subscribers, who pay US$50 a year, receive on-demand "access to a network fleet of cars and trucks parked around some 26 North American cities and universities." Then you pay a reasonable hourly or daily rate from there.
The user experience
1. Using the "Zipcar Mobile Locator" app members view and reserve Zipcar's vehicles based on their current location. When downloaded, the widget allows members to utilize cellular GPS to locate and view Zipcars on their mobile and connect to Zipcar's reservation system.
2. Members are reminded of reservation information, vehicle location info, and can interact with the service in real time (reducing late returns and service calls).
And of course users can access the customer service line or use traditional or mobile websites to access the service. Of course, people still want their personal vehicles but as technology progresses so do our needs. Zipcar is a business model using mobility, flexibility and agility based on what the user wants.
A personal on-demand fleet network.