Car sharing services from a customer point of view


With our subject matter expertise and our years of industry knowledge, we have been able to create a shared mobility approach for projects and clients in the field of travel and mobility, it supports us in our goal to connect both user and business needs.

In this third chapter of our shared mobility research we have followed our human centred approach yet again. While researching shared cars, we specifically focused on people and their needs when they are making their travel choices.

This means we focused mostly on trying the different car sharing brands and documenting our experiences to see if we could identify specific leverage points and points of improvements. As creators, we are users to, this means our team has been part of the field research we have done, to really understand the scenario's for using shared cars and what their pains and gains are.

First and foremost we applied the methods we centre in all our projects: to discover and strategise, use human centred design and continuous user involvement.

Our research contained four main research phases:

Desk research

Our desk research was twofold. First we expanded our knowledge and experience about shared mobility with the latest developments in the market anywhere from newcomers in the markets to latest investments or out-vestments, to media coverage and what the legislators have to say.
Second we mapped out all the shared car brands in the Netherlands to get an overview of the active players in the market that we were able to test (for us they were Sixt Share, MyWheels, SnappCar, Lynk&Co, ShareNow, Greenwheels, Check, Inqar).

The overview of the brands tested by our participants.

Field research

The main way to understand a service or product is to actually use it. Every fellow chose one or more car sharing services to test, and the only rule was that the ride had to be part of our normal routine. So whether it was a ride between the station and a client meeting, an in-between-stops ride, or having to pick up something somewhere, we would choose the best fitting service for our needs and start our test.

We conducted a total of 16 tests of 8 different brands (Sixt Share, MyWheels, SnappCar, Lynk&Co, ShareNow, Greenwheels, Check, Inqar). For 4 weeks the fresk fellows were on the move driving through and within 9 different cities (Amsterdam, Weesp, Haarlem, The Hague, Rotterdam, Delft, Utrecht, Zandvoort, Woerden).

Participants conducting the tests around different cities of The Netherlands.

All the rides were reported through an online form to collect information about the goal of the ride, costs and prices, the onboarding process etc. And for key parts of the experience we asked the fresk fellows to take pictures.

This led us to raw data that we used during 1-on-1 sessions to debrief the experience and go through all the pains and gains of it. It enabled us to collect qualitative insights about the experience before, during and after the ride, and quantitative data related to availability, costs and offer of the products tested.

Market research

The field research gave us more insights and different scenarios of use, and in order to validate these we conducted a validation round with guerrilla interviews in different train stations in the Netherlands and simultaneously invited respondents to answer questions through a questionnaire. Through this engagement we were able to validate different scenarios of using car sharing services and we were able to create a list of the pros and cons for these services.

We were able to ask 28 people about their experience with shared cars and validate the results of our field research.

The questionnaire for our market research

Moments that matter definition session

In order to make sense of the data, we used the insights from our field research and market research as a starting point to better understand the customer journey of shared car users. We analysed the reasons for travellers when using a car sharing service, which we got from our desk and market research, together with the gains and pains collected during the tests, in order to highlight the needs and priorities for each different scenario.

In this way, we have identified the critical moments for users in their journeys and/or when interacting with touchpoints. 

The main drivers plotted in our shared mobility framework

The mapping provided us the opportunity to make a clear distinction between what the prioritised main drivers are depending on the type of ride and the scenario people might find themselves in. This helped us define possible leverage points to improve the car sharing experience for the end users.