Once upon a time, we used to imagine getting our meals delivered at the doorstep by the time we finish bathing and having a cab ready to pick us to our workplace by the time we finish our meal. These days, such things no longer remain as possibilities straight out of science fiction. They are real thanks to a whole array of on-demand apps for doorstep food delivery, cab booking and all sorts of on-demand delivery needs.
Now, such on-demand apps are already extending to other areas of daily life needs. Yes, for taking care of your regular home services, now you have a plethora of on-demand apps. Just think of a scenario when after leaving your home in a mess you come back in the evening only to find your home in perfect order. Your Floor is nearly cleaned, dishes are cleaned and organized and your bed is in perfect shape. Well, this is another level of rewarding experience that you can get through on-demand home services apps.
A Statistical Overview of On-Demand Home Services App
As of now, on-demand home services apps are increasingly getting popular and making new and newer inroads in all the underserved markets. In advanced markets, such apps are going from strength to strength. It is estimated that the on-demand service app market in the US amounts to a whopping $600 billion. According to a report published in the New York Times, this market is estimated to grow at a rate of 49% per year until 2021.
Let us have a look at several statistics that refer to this stupendous growth of on-demand services apps in the time to come.
- As of now, a whopping 86.5 million US citizens have used at least one on-demand service.
- A stunning 45 Million US citizens have offered some sort of service in the bustling on-demand sector.
- In the US, 22.4 million users make annual spending of nearly $57.6 billion through various on-demand services.
- 51% of retailers in the US are offering delivery service on the same day.
- A whopping 63% of employees working with any of the on-demand services expressed happiness and satisfaction in working with their respective on-demand service brand.
- Another report maintained that around 60% of the people in the US are ready to pay excess for getting things delivered on the same day.
On-Demand Home Service Startups: A Case Study of a Successful Venture
To understand how the in-demand service apps are increasingly getting traction in emerging economies and in parts of the world where the market dynamics for such services are still not favorable enough, we need to take the example of a few successful startups. Here we picked up the case of Cheep, an on-demand service app that garnered huge success in recent years.
It has been seen that most households in India just cannot rely on strangers for their required home services. This is precisely why they trust word-of-mouth suggestions and references for hiring servicing people. That’s precisely where Cheep as a service chip in.
To strengthen the reliability and trustworthiness of their services Cheep goes through rigorous authentication of the documents and credentials of the servicing people. People are screened through a rigorous process before they are registered for the platform.
To boost the reliability and the security of the customer the Cheap mobile apps also provide a standalone alert feature that can be used by the client in case of any threatening situation created by the service professional.
When it comes to the range of services offered by the platform, it fairly takes care of all kinds of household woes. The app works as an aggregator for a wide range of services ranging from masseurs and physiotherapists to cleaning professionals to beauticians to cooks and carpenters. The app allows clients to interact with the service professionals of all niches directly while taking care of the reliability, security, management, pricing, and quality service output.
The app lists all kinds of service professionals available in your locality. To help customers choose the one with the required expertise and experience, they list the service professionals with ratings and reviews given by other customers who availed their service. This allows the customers of Cheap making informed choices of service professionals for their respective jobs.
On the other hand, each service professional is covered by an insurance policy for the on-duty risk factors associated with their job. As of now, the company has on board 20,000 plus professionals offering 20 different home services chosen as most relevant by the company following extensive market research. The app-based service is now operational in 20 Indian cities and will soon extend its presence to 13 more cities across India. A pan-India presence further gave the company a clear lead over its competitors.
When it comes to monetization, Cheap prefers a commission-based model. According to the company, the charges for each specific service is at least 30% less than the average industry rate for each service category.
On-Demand Home Services Apps: 3 Key Challenges
The on-demand app for home services has primarily become popular thanks to the huge aid offered to busy people for maintaining their daily lives and household duties. The busy professionals of today instead of taking care of all the boring and time-consuming tasks such as room cleaning, plumbing, organizing the home, etc. can just rely on the expert service professionals for taking care of such activities. This also ensures an increasing demand for different service professionals. Naturally, any app allowing a credible platform of well-trained and reliable service professionals across a variety of niches will find traction from the audience who needs such services.
The on-demand home services apps basically face three key challenges to their business growth. Let’s take a brief look at each one of them.
- Availability of Service Professionals
There are certain niches of home services that can offer plenty of service professionals and availability is never a challenge for such services. But there are also several others that don’t offer too many well-trained and experienced service professionals. For these niches making the service people available for the customers at the time of Need is always a challenge. A home service app should always offer service categories having plenty of available professionals.
- Reliability of Service Professionals
Obviously, clients are going to deal with a stranger who is appearing as a service professional sent by the home service company. Naturally, the company needs to ensure the reliability of the service people through proper screening and authentication of the documents. As an additional security measure, the service app must provide a real-time alert system to ensure prompt response in case of any dangerous or threatening event.
- Quality of Service
To help customers evaluate the service people and make informed decisions, the listing of service people with respective ratings and customer reviews can be a good measure. This helps customers always opting for the service professional with the relevant experience and proof of quality given by other customers.
Key Reasons Behind the Popularity of the On-demand Home Service Apps
In spite of all the challenges and roadblocks corresponding to the quality, reliability, and availability of the required services, the on-demand home service apps continue to gain popularity all over the urban landscapes in every part of the world principally for the below-mentioned reasons.
The biggest impetus for on-demand home service apps is the convenience of availing any service through a platform offering multiple services. Most of the leading on-demand home service apps provide multiple services from the same platform and works for customers like a one-window platform.
- A Win-Win Situation
Such on-demand service platforms offer a win-win situation for both the customers and service professionals. Besides offering the ease and convenience of availing multiple services through the same platform, such apps also allow service professionals to choose their own working hours and favorable conditions of work. The service professionals are further benefited through such on-demand service apps by getting wider exposure to the market and getting in touch with more customers than what they can get in their personal capacity.
- Easy and Transparent Process
The on-demand home service apps are flexible enough to allow the customers and the service people to fix appointments at their convenience and make a schedule for completing the job. This brings transparency in the whole process and makes things easier on both ends.
- Easy Payment Processing
Customers can use the in-app payment gateways and wallets to process payments for the on-demand services availed by them. This offers customers a lot of ease in terms of processing payment while always ensuring transparency and reliability.
Key Considerations for Developing An On-Demand Home Services App
In an earlier section, we have discussed the challenges to the on-demand home service apps. Now, we will focus on the most relevant tips and measures for building and designing an on-demand home service app.
Know Your Users
For any business, customer knowledge is the most important thing they need to focus upon. The more you know your target customers, the better equipped you can be as a business to make customers happy. When it is about getting an in-depth understanding of the customers, you need to have a solid understanding of their needs, age, expectations, region and several other aspects. These demographic elements make the primary attributes of your customer persona. Further, you need to figure out the individual in-app behavior, preferences and pain points. Extensive market research coupled up with continuous use of in-app analytics will help your home service app serve customers better.
- Learn from the Leaders
Among the vast majority of on-demand home service apps, a few enjoy the lead in terms of maximum growth, popularity and customer reach. Obviously, their success just didn’t come by fluke. The UX, business model, service management or customer support must have those success factors. This is why for on-demand home service startups, Learning from the leading apps can be tremendously beneficial.
- User Experience
One of the most important things to pay attention to is the user experience of your on-demand service app. Ensure easy and effortless onboarding experience for the users. Offer a clean, clutter-free and visually attractive user interface that instantly grabs attention. Provide simple navigation focused on the customer journey. Consider offering a real-time Chatbot help for customer support.
- Utilize Custom Push Notifications
Push notifications help you stay constantly in touch with your customers. Push notifications allowing customization for individual customers actually help them make informed decisions through timely reminders. The push notification messages help to boost customer engagement.
- Localize the App
Remember, most on-demand home service apps need to draw heavily on localized elements. Since you need to provide customer service professionals mostly from their localities, the app needs to utilize the localization elements to its advantage. From using a local GPS map to communicating with customers keeping local events and cultural aspects in mind, you can incorporate localization into on-demand home services apps in multiple ways.
- Technology Stack and Development Approach
Finally, as a startup, it is advisable to opt for hybrid development to keep the cost of development at a minimum while not missing on native user experience. You can unroll your project as a hybrid MVP app to stick to the basic and elementary features while remaining open for further development and value additions. This will help you build the app quickly at a lesser cost. As for technology stack, you need to figure out the most viable technologies and tools required for building on-demand home service apps.
On-demand home service apps are continuing to get popular. It is increasingly becoming the most promising app market with unmatched growth and business potential. But to get ahead of the competition, you need to bank particularly on quality and reliability of services and engaging user experience.