The shared mobility industry has experienced significant growth and transformation in 2023, with various segments such as ride-sharing, vehicle rental, and micro-mobility witnessing substantial changes.
From the rise of ride-hailing services to the increasing popularity of shared vehicles, the industry's landscape is evolving rapidly. This article presents 32 key statistics from 2023 that provide valuable insights into the current state and future prospects of the shared mobility sector, offering a comprehensive overview for industry stakeholders and observers.
General – Shared mobility industry
The global shared mobility market is expanding rapidly, projecting a substantial increase in revenues and ridership. By 2030, it is poised to double its share of urban transport journeys from 2023. Additionally, the number of individuals earning from shared mobility services is forecasted to rise notably.
In Europe, shared vehicle services demonstrate considerable growth, with an increase in multi-mobility users. At the same time, European cities are the strictest shared micromobility regulators, limiting the number of operators and implementing various rules.
- The shared mobility market worldwide revenue was projected to reach US$1.43T in 2023. Statista
- Shared mobility is expected to make up 7% of all urban transport journeys globally by 2030, up from 3% in 2023. Shared Mobility's Global Impact
- The global shared mobility market size is expected to grow at a CAGR of 41.65% from 2023 until 2030. Shared Mobility Market Analysis Report
- More than nine million people were estimated to earn an income from shared mobility services in 2023, and the number is forecasted to grow to 16M by 2030. Shared Mobility's Global Impact
- In the shared vehicles market, the number of users is expected to amount to 5.09B users by 2027. Statista
- The average revenue per user (ARPU) was expected to amount to US$180.90 in 2023. Statista
- In global comparison, most revenue from shared mobility is generated in China (US$358B in 2023). Statista
- Africa has the strongest income growth from shared mobility services: jobs are expected to increase by 113% from 2023 to 2030. Shared Mobility's Global Impact
- Ride-hailing drivers typically earn above the minimum wage in Europe (+37% in Berlin and +91% in Tallinn) and above the wages for jobs with comparable skill levels in Africa (up to +130% in South Africa and Nigeria). Shared Mobility's Global Impact
Europe & UK
- There is a significant growth in the use of shared vehicle services, with a 221% increase recorded. Free Now report
- The number of multi-mobility users has also grown by 27%. Free Now report
- Comparing Q3 2022 and Q3 2023, shared mobility ridership is up 1%, and fleets are down 2%, meaning Total Vehicle Distance (TVD) slightly improved across the board. Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
- Out of 32 European authorities that regulate shared micromobility operations, more than two-thirds have implemented rules on geofencing (26), parking (25), removal or repositioning of vehicles (25), fleet size limits (24), and fleet rebalancing and redistribution (22). POLIS report on How European Cities are regulating Shared Micromobility
- Around half of the European authorities limit the number of operators, demand insurance, set speed limits, specify conditions for vehicles and their maintenance, and have instructions for the end of operations. POLIS report on How European Cities are regulating Shared Micromobility
- Juniper Research has ranked Berlin as the leading smart city in Europe in 2023 thanks to its mobility-as-a-service (MaaS) app Jelbi, which incorporates public and private transport. Other cities in the European top five are London, Barcelona, Rome and Madrid. Cities Today
Shared car ridership has increased significantly, with notable upward trends in Q3 2023. The global ride-hailing market is also projected to witness substantial growth, with increased user numbers and an uptick in popularity over taxis in the United States. In Europe, German cities, led by Berlin, continue to dominate in total shared car ridership.
- Shared car ridership has grown by 22% from Q3 2022 to Q3 2023. Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
- The car-sharing market size was worth USD 2.9B in 2022 and is estimated to showcase around 20% CAGR from 2023 to 2032. Global Market Insights
- The biggest increase of car ridership in Europe in 2023 happened in Riga, thanks to the emergence of Bolt Drive. Antwerp saw the 2nd most growth due to the introduction of Miles Mobility Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
- German cities continue to dominate the rankings for total ridership per city. In Berlin, there are 30% more shared cars on the streets than in 2022. Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
- The ride-hailing market worldwide is projected to grow by 6.97% (2023-2028), resulting in a market volume of US$215.70B in 2028. Statista
- Ride-hailing services were anticipated to hit a record number of users in 2023, with an additional 6.6M users in the US, representing a 10.1% increase and finally recouping its pandemic-era losses. Insider Intelligence
- In the United States, ride-hailing is reported to be used more frequently than taxis, with around a fifth of respondents being occasional users of ride-sharing services. Statista
Electric scooters and mopeds
Electric scooter (e-scooter) ridership has declined, although it remains the predominant shared mobility choice, constituting 42% of total ridership. Moped ridership in Europe has similarly decreased, influenced by exits of key market players.
E-scooters have emerged as an environmentally friendly alternative, with 10% of rides directly replacing car journeys. Citizen referendums in Paris and evolving regulations in Amsterdam reflect the dynamic landscape of the electric scooter and moped market.
- E-scooter ridership has fallen by 14% from Q3 2022 to Q3 2023. That said, scooters are still the most popular shared mobility transport mode, with 42% total ridership. Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
- Moped ridership in Europe has fallen by 28% from Q3 2022 to Q3 2023 due to the departure of some players in key markets. Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
- Electric scooter usage patterns show 10% of rides directly replace car journeys. Shared Mobility's Global Impact
- Thus, e-scooters have contributed to a reduction of up to 120M car-kilometers traveled, helping to reduce car-related emissions by an estimated 30,000 tons of CO2e. Shared Mobility's Global Impact
- On 2 April 2023, Paris held a referendum on shared e-scooters, and 90% of voters gave their vote against renewing the contract of three shared micromobility companies to operate around 5,000 e-scooters each. CNBC
- In Amsterdam, moped ridership has grown by 22% despite new regulations on helmets being brought into effect. Q2 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
The global bike-sharing market shows significant growth. In Europe, station-based bikes have increased in popularity. Dockless bikes experienced an impressive surge as well, following the 2023 scooter ban in Paris. Overall, bike fleets and ridership are expanding across major European cities, contributing to a robust Trips/Vehicle/Day (TVD) ratio.
- The global bike-sharing market is projected to reach US$12.68 billion by 2027, growing at a CAGR of 10.71% from 2023 to 2027. Statista
- Station-based bike ridership in Europe has grown by 11% from Q3 2022 to Q3 2023. Station-based bikes are the second most popular shared mobility transport mode, with 30% total ridership. Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
- After the 2023 scooter ban in Paris, dockless bikes have boomed 144%. Dockless bike ridership more than doubled YoY in September (x2.5) and October 2023 (x2.3). Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
- Fleets and ridership are growing across Europe, especially in cities like Paris, London,Copenhagen and Antwerp. The combined TVD of dockless and station-based bikes is a very healthy 2.9. Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
Rolling into 2024
The shared mobility market continues to expand. With ride-sharing and micro-mobility playing pivotal roles, the future of shared mobility appears promising. The insights gathered from these statistics are crucial for understanding the shared mobility market's trajectory and its implications for the broader transportation ecosystem.
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Is it a good time to start a car-sharing business? Absolutely.
The car-sharing market is booming – it's estimated to grow 20% every year and reach a $20 billion market value by 2032. That's nearly a sevenfold increase from 2022's $2.9 billion valuation.
Despite app-based vehicle sharing being a relatively new entrant in the mobility ecosystem, it has exploded in popularity. People have been quick to pick up on its convenience and ease of use, especially in urban centers where maintaining a private vehicle grows increasingly costly and bothersome.
This spells an opportunity for entrepreneurs keen to answer real mobility demand.
But what is car-sharing and how does it work? What does the business model look like? And what are the first steps for getting started?
Find the answers below.
What is car-sharing and how does it work?
Car-sharing is an app-based mobility service that allows individuals to rent vehicles on a short-term basis. With this service, users gain access to a fleet of vehicles which are typically stationed throughout a city, ensuring that there's always a car conveniently nearby.
The user's journey and benefits of car-sharing
Through an app on their smartphone, users can locate, book, and unlock the closest available vehicle, as well as pay for their journey automatically by adding payment details, thus providing a seamless experience and quick access to a car. Other common benefits for users include not having to worry about fuel or insurance, as those are included in the price.
Cities often encourage the use of shared mobility since it helps decongest streets, free up parking, and minimize the environmental impact of private vehicles on the city. Accordingly, public-private partnerships are common, conferring further benefits for users of this type of shared mobility: free parking, free use of bus lanes, and more.
How does car-sharing work: the business perspective
On the business side of things, the operator is responsible for ensuring that maintenance and logistical tasks for their fleet are taken care of.
This includes regular maintenance tasks, such as vehicle check-ups, repairs, fuel fill-ups, and cleaning. Also, if you have a free-floating model (where users can leave their cars anywhere), the operator should regularly relocate cars to optimal locations for continued user convenience and reliability.
Beyond deploying and maintaining their fleet, operators also oversee the smooth functioning of their mobility app, as well as take care of user verification, namely, ensuring that the people signing up are who they say they are and have valid driver licenses. Of course, like any other business, customer support and other responsibilities tied to running the operation are a given.
The car-sharing business model
So far, we have listed a lot of expenses – maintenance, management, insurance, IT. Add to this salaries, operational overheads, and buying or renting the fleet itself. How do businesses recoup all these expenses and turn a profit?
Note: Since car-sharing businesses operate at scale, they should aim to negotiate lower rates with service providers.
Car-sharing businesses make use of several revenue sources. First and foremost, customers are charged for the time/distance use of the car. Additionally, branding and cross-promotion partnerships (e.g. advertising on the car or the app) are often used to secure additional revenue. It may also be sensible to create membership or loyalty programs to ensure recurring revenue, by offering subscribers added benefits, such as access to premium cars or longer reservation times.
The aim is to have your cars on the road as much as possible, so enterprises typically focus on maximizing vehicle usage and revenue per vehicle. Finding success is about finding balance in a constantly changing landscape – having too few cars may lead to overbooking and dissatisfaction with lack of availability, whereas having too many will lead to inefficient use of resources.
How to start a car-sharing business
As with any business, launching a car-sharing project requires research, investment, development, and strategy. Let's take a look at each in turn.
1. Market research
When exploring opportunities for starting a car-sharing business, numerous factors must be considered.
Audience and demand
Understanding the demographics, preferences, and behaviors of your potential users is crucial. As is determining the level of demand. Some questions you should answer include:
- Who is my target audience – urban commuters, occasional travelers?
- What are their demographics? How should you communicate with them?
- What segment offers the most promise – B2C, B2B?
Identifying who's already operating in your area and why (or why not) can help you get a better grasp of what works and what doesn't. Some questions you should answer include:
- Who are my competitors – other car/ride-sharing businesses, public transportation?
- How can I differentiate my business from others?
- Has any previous similar business failed in this area – why?
Legal and logistical considerations
Determining whether there are any legal/practical barriers to launching your operations is a smart thing to do before you invest too much time and money into your project. Consider:
- What are the legal requirements for operating this type of business in your area?
- How will you handle insurance and liability issues for your fleet?
- How and where will you run your day-to-day operations? If you're thinking about going electric – does the area have the necessary infrastructure?
While answering these questions isn't necessarily a prerequisite for launching your business, dealing with them early on can save you a lot of headaches down the road.
How much capital do you need to launch a car-sharing business?
It depends most on whether you're planning to rent or buy vehicles for your fleet. While renting is more accessible in the short term, it will take a sizable bite out of your profit. Owning your vehicles is typically the preferred option, as this offers price stability, long-term cost efficiency, freedom of operations, and other benefits.
To get a ballpark estimate for the starting investment, you should add up the total price of cars (EUR 12,000-20,000 per vehicle), insurance, car-sharing software procurement and maintenance, as well as expected operational overhead for getting started. It may also be wise to put aside some funds for unexpected expenses such as repairs.
3. Development and launch strategy
Securing the vehicles and necessary permits can take a while, and you should account for this. During this time, you should put your plans into practice. Establish maintenance protocols and logistical plans for efficient fleet management. Implement user verification processes and responsive customer support for a secure and positive user experience.
As to the IT infrastructure, you can save a lot of resources by choosing a white-label IT solution to power your app and dramatically accelerate your time-to-market. Platforms like ATOM Mobility can equip your business with the app you need – all you have to do is customize it.
Speaking of customization, don't forget about branding. Create a compelling brand identity and plan for targeted launch and marketing campaigns to generate awareness the moment your business is ready for its first customers.
Your car-sharing business journey starts here
Now you know how to start a business in this industry – entering this thriving market demands a blend of user-centric strategies and astute business decisions. But the key to success is reliable partners that can guide you in the right direction.
Get in touch with ATOM Mobility to discover how you can power your new enterprise the smart way.
Marketing in the mobility business is unique because your fleets – be it scooters, bikes, cars, or mopeds – are like a flexible billboard moving all over the city. Whenever someone chooses your service, they essentially parade it around town like a brand ambassador, and even when your fleet is stationary it attracts significant attention as people constantly see it on the streets.
In other words, urban mobility businesses enjoy high brand awareness.
Still, for mobility entrepreneurs, this is the norm. Namely, it's an industry baseline that everyone benefits from and it won't necessarily help you gain more customers, outperform competitors, and boost business.
To do all of those things, you still need an effective marketing strategy that reaches the right audiences and activates users.
Understanding your target audience
Vehicle-sharing customers are diverse, as are their motivations for using the services. Since you're likely operating in a very specific market, i.e. a particular city or region, it's critical to identify and understand your target audience and the different segments to not only reach and speak to the right people, but also avoid wasteful ad spend.
Determining who you're marketing to will also help you in defining the messaging and channels you use, which are key for successful campaigns.
1. Differentiating between B2C and B2B segments
The broadest categories are business-to-consumer (B2C) and business-to-business (B2B). While most people associate vehicle sharing with B2C, e.g. a person zooming on a scooter down a bike lane to make an appointment, the reality is that the far-less-visible B2B segment is thriving with initiatives like corporate car sharing schemes.
The messaging for these two – the individual on the scooter and the CEO looking to offer a convenient mobility solution to their employees – will vary greatly. Different pain points, motivations, and use cases mean that you must adapt how you talk to each segment and differentiate between the two from the get-go. That is, if you're looking to target both.
2. Conducting market research to define customer personas
Whether you're focusing on B2C, B2B, or both, you should research who are the people using/buying your services. The goal is to have your marketing efforts reach the right people, and by digging into the background of your customers, you'll gain an understanding of who they are.
To do so, dive into demographics (age, gender), use cases (how, when, and why they travel), and price sensitvity (how much they spend, do discounts affect their decisions), among other things. Companies often craft user personas by putting all of this information together and creating a profile of the average customer, which they then use to develop their messaging.
Do note that if multiple dominant categories emerge, it's completely normal to have 2-3 user personas. Plus, these can evolve over time, so make sure to conduct ongoing research and refine it according to new data.
Finding the right marketing channels
Once you know who you're targeting, it's important to find out where these people are to reach them in the most effective way possible. If your primary customers are college students, you're unlikely to find them on Facebook.
Generally speaking, we can split the marketing channels into two categories – online and offline.
Nowadays, digital marketing is where the bulk of action happens.
Social media platforms offer a fantastic opportunity to reach your specific audience, as they typically allow advanced targeting. By narrowing down various parameters, such as location, demographics, and even related preferences (the factors we defined when creating user personas), it's possible to have very cost-effective ads that generally reach the people who are most likely to convert. Collaboration ith influencers is also an increasingly effective strategy.
However, you must carefully consider which platforms to advertise on. B2C content will thrive in places like Instagram, but, if you're targeting CEOs and CPOs for B2B services, LinkedIn may prove to be a better fit. It's extremely difficult to accurately predict which platform will perform best, hence it's wise to have a presence on multiple platforms, and allocate budgets according to observed returns.
Search engine and content marketing is another avenue worth exploring – think of it as your company showing up as the first result when somebody searches for a keyword relevant to your business, e.g. “best car-sharing in (city)”. This can be paid, where your website or app appears as a sponsored result. Or it can be organic, where you produce valuable content that ranks highly on search engine result pages.
Organic content may take longer to deliver results, however, it can offer greater long-term return on investment (ROI). For example, if your city is a burgeoning tourist destination, you can create a guide on how to get around the city and include your services as one of the best ways to do so.
Display advertising is another paid channel and, in essence, it entails paying partners to place ads/banners of your services on their website. For display advertising to succeed, finding the right partners is key. For example, it might make more sense to have your car-sharing service banner appear on a local tourism page or a student club website than a clothing e-commerce store.
You'll find further digital marketing opportunities with email marketing, referral programs, push notifications and more. With online advertising, experimentation is critical – test various methods and platforms to explore what brings the greatest ROI.
Offline channels include things such as traditional media (TV, radio, print), outdoor advertising, as well as partnerships and sponsorships. These can complement a strong digital marketing strategy, particularly as it relates to standing out among the competition.
Fostering brand awareness is its strong suit, as offline advertising typically struggles with driving direct conversions. That is, a bus stop poster may not give you immediate app downloads, but its primary value lies in your business being top of mind when the potential customer is looking for a mobility solution.
Of course, you don't have to – nor should you – go all-in on a single channel. Rather you should dabble in multiple to see what works, and then double down on the most effective channels.
Allocating ad spend effectively
The goal of any marketing effort is to invest $1 and get more than $1 in return. Working with a limited budget means you must carefully manage your ad spend to get the most out of it.
First, you should define measurable goals for your marketing campaigns. Setting key performance indicators (KPIs) allows you to measure the success of your campaign. These KPIs – e.g. app download, website visit, account creation, first ride, user activation – can vary between channels, platforms, and campaigns, however, they should always be conducive to achieving your business goals.
With clear goals, you can evaluate performance. Investing in various channels and seeing how they perform will provide you with insights about which should be left alone, and which are the more lucrative ones that demand prioritzation.
Still, here are some things to keep in mind:
- Adapt your campaigns to each platform. A video of a teenager dancing around your scooter might do great on TikTok and flop on LinkedIn.
- Take into account that vehicle-sharing, and e-scooters in particular, can be a very seasonal industry and your marketing goals should reflect that.
- Your campaigns should become more effective over time as you gather more data, so don't get discouraged early on.
- Always tackle low-hanging fruits first, namely, the opportunities that give you the most returns with the least amount of effort.
Effective ad budget allocation is a balancing game that you will get better at with experience. Early on, it's about defining achievable goals and finding the easiest way to reach them.
Making use of ATOM Mobility's features for marketing
Best-in-class software platforms for mobility, like ATOM Mobility, should offer various tools that help you along in your marketing journey.
For example, ATOM Mobility can inform your overall strategy with the comprehensive analytics business owners can find in their dashboard. Ride and customer data, statistics and heatmaps, reports and insights can all help you get a better grasp of who is using your services and where. This, in turn, may aid in defining user personas and ensure you don't have to start your marketing from scratch.
More directly, ATOM Mobility also offers inbuilt advanced marketing tools:
- Loyalty and referral programs that drive word-to-mouth marketing,
- Integrated email marketing, in-app messages, and push notifications that help stay top of mind and re-activate existing users,
- Discounts, promos, and bonus zones that appeal to deal-chasing customers.
This article has mostly focused on customer acquisition, however, retention and activation should also have a prominent place in your strategy. By leveraging your own organic communication channels – your app, email subscribers, social media – you can increase customer lifetime value, boosting revenue at low expense to yourself.
Level up your mobility business
A well-executed marketing strategy can elevate your business. Putting one together takes effort and resources, but it can be the difference between struggling to make ends meet and a thriving mobility enterprise.
So, identify your customers, target them where they hang out, iterate and optimize. And make sure to use tools and platforms that help you along the way.