Since UBER launched it has become a cliché for startups to describe themselves as “UBER for……”. Nothing wrong with that, since UBER lead the movement of the mobile phone becoming the “remote control” for our life. We can do almost anything with our mobile phones these days. People get groceries, take-out, a car, deliveries and the list can go on with a click of a button. This is all great, but the trick is to learn from UBER without trying to be UBER.
Most will choose convenience as the main reason for success for UBER. The real success for UBER is that they used mobile technology to create a 10x better product than other driving services and did so at a lower price.
So it is important to learn the the right things from UBER?
Here is a short list of the most valuable lessons other businesses and startups can take from UBER.
If you can create a marriage between convenience and price, you will have a match made in heaven. The trick is to be in such a position that your service is for everyone who will pay a reasonable price for convenience.
Use technology to recast incumbent cost structures.
Technology can recast incumbent cost structure. Doing this creates a structural cost advantage that can endure as you grow if you make use of economies of scale and network effects.
Examples of this for one, is UBER’s use of a “sharing” economy that unlocked latent value in underutilized assets that disrupted asset heavy approaches. It is the same principle that made Airbnb a runaway success.
Customer focus and Feedback
- Remove the friction pointsNo more waiting on the sidewalk for a taxi, worrying if the driver is going to rip you off on price. No more carrying cash. Your biggest worry in a UBER is if you have enough battery power on your phone and enough airtime.
Ask yourself, what is the friction points I can take away for my customers?
- TransparencyUBER has succeeded in giving the customer transparency. You know your drivers name, what car he drives, the registration number and where the driver is every single moment from requesting the ride. Technology that keep customers informed in real-time is a great feature in any business. Giving this service to a customer help to set and manage the customer’s expectations.
- Feedback as currencyUBER gives the customer and employee the opportunity to rate each other straight after your trip. This make it easy for customers and employees to feel heard and the feedback helps to improve on service.
- Human ConnectionIn the end we all are humans and not robots. And humans enjoy interaction with other humans. As UBER says in their vision, “…. we’re proud to connect people who need a reliable ride with people looking to earn money driving their car.” There is something special about human connection and personal touch. In the example of UBER, it is great to know your drivers name and you might even find your new best friend behind the wheel.
There are many companies like UBER that are transforming the way of doing business. They are breaking ground through new innovation that can disrupt a whole industry. The question is then, what are your company going to do, to push boundaries that will revolutionize the industry that you are in?