Consumer Expectations: On-Demand Economy
09 JUNE 2015, UAE
Today’s consumer is impatient. They want products and services tailored to their needs and they want it now. An On-Demand Economy is defined by Business Insider as the economic activity created by technology companies that fulfill consumer demand via the immediate provisioning of goods and services. A growing number of businesses are understanding this need and are striving to meet demand. Easy Taxi provides instant cabs, Helpling.ae supplies cleaners, 24h.ae provides online food-delivery, Namshi offers online fashion shopping. This trend highlights how on-demand economy is vital.
Manar Alkassar, Co-Founder of Helpling.ae, offers insight on on-demand economy and why consumers are expecting it.
What are on-demand services?
On-demand services is the convenience of obtaining products or services using technology and within a short period of time. For example, booking a taxi or a cleaner or purchasing groceries online. The technology usually comes in the form of websites or apps and in some cases, offers cashless payments as added value.
How do on-demand services affect the consumer?
The internet has enabled people to get the information they need wherever and whenever they need them. But why only information? Why not also products and services? Consumers today are racing with time and demand ease. We are continuously rushing to get to work, to the gym, to meet friends and family and so on. Yet, we still have to run errands, commute, clean, cook, and attend to our daily chores.
Services that facilitate such tasks for consumers are big business now. For example, with helpling.ae, you do not have to worry about cleaning your home on your own, or stressing about the time you will spend looking for a cleaner. You can book a cleaning service using the online platform in less than 2 minutes. This is what the consumer expects - efficiency and convenience.
How does technology contribute to the development of the on-demand economy
Across the globe, shoppers are increasingly turning to the web to make purchases and book services. Websites and applications that offer smart matching (linking the customer requirements with the vendor’s offering) are an ultimate solution to cater to the customer’s needs. In the case of Helpling, an intelligent algorithm matches the clients’ specific request with the cleaner based on the availability and the location. In addition, businesses are increasingly offering cashless service. Shoppers input credit card details onto the platform once and can continue buying without having to repeat that process every time.
What are your predictions for on-demand services and how would it affect businesses in the future?
More and more businesses will jump on the bandwagon and consider incorporating a model that offers the maximum convenience to the consumer. We will get to the stage where mobile applications will be fulfilling all gaps allowing customers to shop for everything digitally and conveniently. In some industries, this may fully replace the traditional offline concept: why should anybody need to visit an agency and fill a form to find a cleaner when they can book online? In other industries, such as electronics or clothing, we will see an increase in incorporating online showrooms to complement the offline stores.
The German based startup Helpling is the leading global online platform for on-demand home services. On the website, customers can book a vetted and insured cleaner in a couple of clicks. The innovative online service gives people more time to enjoy the nice things in life: family, friends and leisure activities.
Helpling was founded by Benedikt Franke, Philip Huffmann and Rocket Internet in January 2014. The company currently has more than 250 employees and offers its service in more than 200 cities globally. This makes Helpling the most widely available online marketplace for household services in the world.
Helpling is the leading online marketplace for home services outside the U.S. On the website or via app, customers can book a vetted and insured cleaner and gain back free time within a couple of clicks. For self-employed cleaners, the online service makes it easier than ever to access new clients and to manage when and where they want to work. As the first marketplace in Europe, Helpling mediates various household services from a single source, e.g. window cleaning, furniture assembly or painting work.
Helpling was founded by Benedikt Franke, Philip Huffmann and Rocket Internet in January 2014. Since then the company has raised 56.5 million Euros from investors such as Mangrove Capital Partners, Phenomen Ventures, Point Nine Capital, Lukasz Gadowski, Lakestar and Kite Ventures. Helpling is active in 9 countries in 3 continents: Australia, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Singapore, UAE and UK.