Over the last decade the world has become increasingly digitalized and connected, and most of the traditional industries have undergone serious transformations. You can get almost any service you need with a tap of a finger.
Every task that was once time-consuming and difficult has been reimagined with the help of modern technologies. Thus, many services have become more accessible and cheaper. And it’s all due to the wide adoption of the so-called “on-demand economy”.
According to BusinessInsider, “The On-Demand Economy is defined as the economic activity created by technology companies that fulfill consumer demand via the immediate provisioning of goods and services.”
Making a difference
Often referred to as sharing economy, gig economy, or crowd economy, it acts as a digital middleman, connecting individual service providers or businesses directly to the customer through an app or a web marketplace.
Offering an easier way to access any product or service, it is an extremely popular and lucrative market. In 2016, the on-demand economy accounted for $34 billion in revenue, generated only by local U.S. businesses, and the numbers are growing steadily: this year, the on-demand economy market is expected to reach $57 billion.
What is so good about on-demand apps?
What made the on-demand economy so popular was the recent shift in consumer behavior. Modern consumers prioritize convenience and speed above all. Thus, a business model that eliminates all barriers between a user and the desired service/product is deemed successful.
Moreover, tech-enabled businesses are by definition, more competitive than traditional organizations. Aside from being convenient and accessible, the services provided by Uber-like businesses typically come at a lower cost. This is largely due to the highly efficient on-demand business model.
Another competitive advantage of products like Uber or Airbnb is the commitments they offer. Using their services, you can be sure your interests are protected, be it payment safety, claim resolution, refunds, or any other issue you might be faced with.
Such guarantees are a part of the brand image, and a very important one. This is why people pay the Airbnb service fee instead of renting directly from an owner.
From your Uber ride to work, to your lunch delivered directly to your office, there are hundreds of on-demand businesses operating across all major business domains.
Probably, the most outstanding and obvious example of such a product is Uber. This on-demand transportation service was among the pioneers of the sharing economy. The project became so popular that it eventually started a wave of “Uber for X” startups across various industries. Despite recent troubles, the company still dominates the market, accounting for 53% of the US ground transportation expenses.
Working with some of the Fortune 500 companies and innovative startups, we at Eastern Peak have extensive experience building on-demand economy apps. One of the brightest examples is our work for an Israeli startup FixitJoe.
Providing repair services for households and businesses, the company was faced with the need to optimize their internal processes and efficiently match the orders with the available employees. Therefore, the main task was to organize an efficient order assignment and an employee management process.
Challenges of on-demand apps development
Organizing an efficient process is one of the major issues such companies typically face in the early stages of their development. Thus, solving this problem appropriately is crucial as it determines if and how further growth and profitability of the company can be achieved.
At the early stage of the project, it was important to think over the business logic of the future product. Being a B2B company, FixItJoe service is primarily used by property management companies across numerous locations.
The product had to be able to handle a pretty stable and heavy inflow of orders, as any delay or error could not only impact the company itself, but its clients as well.
As a part of our cooperation with FixItJoe, we have built a mobile app, web platform (admin panel) and a reliable backend infrastructure.
How it works
The product enables instant order processing and assignment through automation, replacing the operators with an algorithm. The admin function can still be performed through the web interface, for example to handle unexpected situations or user complaints.
The mobile app allows a user to place an order for the household services. As soon as the order is created, the system finds a free specialist and schedules an assignment for them.
A user can see the worker’s location and how soon they will arrive. After completing the order, a user can pay for the service right within the app and rate the provider.
The quality of the product proved to be vital for FixItJoe, and this is true for any crowd economy app: it has a major impact on the competitiveness and viability of the startup, which is especially true for consumer-facing apps.
Among other successful examples of on-demand economy apps we have built for our clients are GetTaxi, Bonshine, and Ubertesters. (You can schedule a walkthrough with our sales managers to learn more about our skills and experience in the sphere.)
While many argue that it’s a short-term trend, the massive adoption and rapid growth of the sharing economy once again prove them wrong. Used by 86.5 million US citizens, or 42% of the country’s population, on-demand services are here to stay.
Having already revolutionized most aspects of our day-to-day life, the on-demand economy continues to penetrate further, disrupting traditional service industries and business models. Some of the world’s leading brands, including Walgreens, Home Depot, Walmart, Gap, GM, and even Cisco have already embraced on-demand services.
If you want to enter the on-demand market, the two things you need to focus on are the speed and convenience of your service.
As the market becomes increasingly saturated, consumer expectations will rise in parallel to the degree of market saturation. Thus, the ability to offer a faster and easier way to get what they want can be your major competitive advantage.
To be able to meet the rising customer expectations and stand out among your competition, you need to invest in the product’s quality. Choosing the right tech stack and a reliable development partner will help you lay a solid foundation for your on-demand business and contribute to its future success.
To get a professional consultation on how to bring your idea of an on-demand service to life, contact us now.
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