EThe gig economy has such a nice ring to it. It hints at a work life that you can drop in and out of, as you please; however, the reality on the road for Uber and Lyft drivers, as well as limo drivers, is one of pure hustle. For drivers who decide to make ridesharing into a full-time job, they’re not only driving all over the city and delivering customers safely to their destinations, they must also find time to successfully run their own service-based small business.
Tip #1: Be The Star of Your Own Ridesharing Show
When you want to increase your sales, promoting your business both inside and outside of the vehicle is essential. Unlike the owner of a limousine who drives for himself, as a driver for Uber or Lyft you are a contractor who represents your employer and yourself. To increase your customer service ratings, which impact your ability to work, make sure your vehicle always looks and smells presentable. Whether it’s buying new floor mats or getting a regular car wash, it’s important to spend some time and effort
Tip #2: Secure Your Credit Card and Data Transactions
Customers want instant access to finding rides. Having a driver and a passenger app lets you communicate freely by text with your potential clients. Many of these apps provide other services like the driver’s ride history, instant quotes and prices from point A to B, as well as driver feedback to help you improve their experience. And, most also have the ability to accept credit card payments. If you’re not using Uber or Lyft’s App, make sure that you protect your customers from cyber theft by working with a proven PCI compliance vendor.
PCI Security Standards Council, comprised of the payment card brands—MasterCard Worldwide, Visa Inc, American Express, Discover Financial Services
Tip #3: Put Your Passenger Hat On (And Leave It On)
Reputation and advertising are the biggest part of any business. Just like a Realtor has to market their services and build an image in the customer’s mind, so must ridesharing drivers. It may seem a bit foolish to waste time as a passenger when you’re in the transportation business, however, it’s more beneficial than you may at first imagine. As a rider, you’ll get a true sense of what passengers want from the experience. Recognizing and anticipating your customers’ needs can improve not only the number of rides you book but also the amount of your tip.
Tip #4: Offer Aspirin, Healthy Snacks and Beverages
After a long night out or a day of shopping in busy malls, your passengers may feel parched, hungry and possibly irritable. Some may also have a headache after a night of drinking. Having supplies on hand to satisfy their immediate needs helps to elevate the role of a driver to that of a caring, aware and compassionate person. For travel size aspirin packs and other assorted needs, shop the travel section at your local Target or Walgreens.
Tip #5: Look the Part, Play the Part
People who use a limousine service for a party or a special event want someone who looks the part. If you are a driver it’s up to you to play the part. Wearing a suit isn’t necessarily a must, but it doesn’t hurt. Even while driving for Lyft or Uber, it makes sense to adhere to business casual standards. Proper business attire, like it or not, can go a long way in establishing trust with customers.
In addition, your vehicle must follow suit. Make sure your vehicle is clean inside and out and a consistently pleasant environment for every new passenger. This extends to the quality of the conversation between passenger and driver. Some drivers delve into their personal lives, their political beliefs and so on. Generally speaking, that’s not a good idea. Here’s a good idea: Respect the rider, and the rider will pay you back.