24 December 2018

Apps like Uber-Disruption in the On-Demand Laundry Services Industry

Apps like Uber-Disruption in the On-Demand Laundry Services Industry

“Get that dirty wash out of the way with the smart way of doing laundry.”

One Sunday morning, you wake up, eyes feel blurry, the world seems on a spin-you have no idea what went on last night. A moment later, the flashbacks start kicking in… you hosted a party because you finally bought your favorite car. However, you went awry with all the booze and the party feel.

Never mind. It’s a new morning-time to sober up. You walk across your home, grabbing a glass of water or two and come sit on your couch. Suddenly, the revelation dawns upon you-There’s office tomorrow. So what? Well, you have to get your clothes washed, But it is already 12 pm now-not the perfect hour to sober up, drive to the laundry service, get clothes washed, dried, ironed and back home.

Here comes the champion-a mobile app-enabled pick ‘n’ drop laundry service. A mobile app, to facilitate the pickup of your dirty laundry-shipment to the nearest partner laundry service, and post that, clean ‘n’ well-ironed clothes being shipped to your place. In fact, a laundry app like Uber offers Better distribution, access, transparency, consistency, increased satisfaction via instant gratification using a platform, and ease of payment, while keeping private data private.

Call it a first-world problem if you wish to, but customers don’t hesitate to pay extra bucks for the convenience of not doing their laundry themselves. In fact, since decades, people have been paying others to their laundry. However, more recently, in the past few years-post the disruption caused by Uber, people figured out that laundry and dry cleaning is far-fetched and an alternative solution existed where people could have the clothes picked up from the home or office.

On-Demand Laundry Store Growth Prospects

According to a report by Forbes, the laundry service market is expected to grow to $76.5 billion, by 2018 in India, alone. Moreover, by the end of 2020, it is expected that over 3 million households will need laundry services on a weekly basis in India. When coupled with smartphone penetration-considering the fact that an average Indian downloads over 32 apps on their mobiles, the expansive growth of the industry is submissible.

According to a Statista report, the revenue from industrial laundry is expected to reach 8.73 billion by 2020, against the current net revenues of 8.40 billion in 2017, observing a YOY growth of over 11%. Moreover, the time poverty of the working class and rising disposable income have led to be the deciding factors prompting the urban Indians to opt for on-demand laundry services.

End-customer Expectations
End-customer Expectations

In the light of such events, multiple entrepreneurs have ventured into the segment and come up with solutions to enable a customer to request the pick-up of dirty clothes, get them cleaned and delivered to his doorstep. Also known as “Uber for Laundry”, the on-demand economy has engulfed the traditional segment and evolved into a multi-billion dollar On-Demand Laundry App Economy.

Henceforth, we look into the expectations of the end-customer before you consider building a laundry app like uber.

  1. Custom-Built Platform
  2. Durable Technology
  3. Reasonably priced
  4. Adaptable Infrastructure
  5. Quick Launch
  6. Efficient Customer Support
Trends Overlooking the On-Demand Transformation
Trends Overlooking the On-Demand Transformation
1. Consumer Behavior

Consumers, in the current setup of “Share & Consume”, are attracted by the businesses which offer a seamless solution. Now when they get their clothes picked up-cleaned- and delivered to their doorstep, making a choice against the conventional methods turns out easy. Also, customers love being educated about each step of the procedure, wherein the real-time tracking helps them view the clothes’ journey from their home-to laundry- and back to their place.

2. Crowdsourced Supply

If we consider the traditional model of the laundry and dry cleaning business, entrepreneurs had to hire more human workforce. As we know, hiring an expansive workforce comes with its own risk-in terms of paying off greater salaries without being sure of the returns form the investment. However, On-demand Economy changed the business model of the laundry app to ‘crowdsourced supply’, where consumers turned out to be the supplier of services. Hence, rather than hiring people on a full-time basis, an entrepreneur has the feasibility to hire freelancers, dependable on the volume of jobs at hand.

3. Decline of the Ownership Model
Decline of the Ownership Model

Owing to the disruption caused by Uber and the consequent uprising of the ‘Uber for X’ phenomenon, the laundry business owners are observing a shift towards the ‘less ownership model’. Let’s consider an example, where you own a laundry in a distant part of the city. In order to scale up your business, you plan to set another establishment in the heart of the city, where you could cater more customers. However, the first step involved would be owning or renting the space, building infrastructure, and hiring a team, which would ask for huge capital investment, infrastructure costs, and multiple other operational expenditures.

As a matter of fact, the Uber for X model slashes out the requirement of investment on physical infrastructure. In the wake of on-demand apps, an online platform caters to the customers’ needs and requirements-in a fashion, the conventional physical laundry would cater to them. At a later stage, the on-demand laundry apps are expected to take over the conventional coin-based laundries and eventually, streamline the way laundry services are delivered to end-customers.