Can your bike rentals give what European cycling tourists want? Worldwide data.
THE DOMESTIC EUROPEAN MARKET
What motivates the European cyclists?
- Sports activity
- Near to nature
- Away from daily life
- Learning about land and people
- Rest and leisure
- Cultural heritage
- Experience with cycling holidays
- Environmentally healthy
We wrote about the number 7+10 on the list above in our recent blog “6 things bike rental customers are looking for and how to provide them”. One of the biggest booms recently in travel industry has been the rise of “Experiential travel” and it is growing fast. It is a form of tourism in which people focus on experiencing a place by connecting to its history, people and culture. Read more in the blog how bike rentals play an important role helping tourists.
What is important to them?
- Low traffic density
- Signposts for cyclists
- Route variety
- Road surface quality
- Cyclist friendly accommodation
- Food & beverage opportunities
- Information material
- Public transport access
- Route density
- Places and huts for resting
- Enroute cycle-maintenance shops
How to attract European cycling tourists to your bike rentals?
To send professional looking personalized email marketing, use the integrated Mailchimp in BRM and create marketing campaigns in minutes. Check out the Guide to getting started with Mailchimp.
Some examples how you could market your bike rentals:
- List cycling friendly accommodation on your website, after you have partnered with some of them so they will promote your bikes on their website and venue. They can even add your online booking to their own website, check here for instructions for agent bookings.
- Add links to local routes, maps and guides on your website and remember to mention if they have low traffic and are signposted.
- You could add list of places to eat and drink en route.
- Tell them how easy it is to get to your shop by using local transport, like distance to train station or use BRM delivery scheduling to deliver your bikes straight to your customers
If your website content appeals to the potential bike renter, you have a higher chance of getting the booking rather than your competitor so try to add some information based on the motivators listed above on your website and remember: “a picture is worth a thousand words” and use plenty on great images of happy people on your bikes or the beauty of your local area.
Check out our blog on “9 Bike Rental Must-Haves” for more tips on creating a website that attracts customers and gets you bookings.
FOREIGN EUROPEAN TRAVEL
This study was done by CBI/Ministry of Foreign Affairs , called “Cycling tourism from Europe”. “Europe is one of the most important source regions for cycling tourism. The market is driven by increased demand for active holidays, an increasing interest in ‘green’ tourism activities and growth in countryside recreation and holidays” according to their findings.
Cycling tourism refers to leisure trips where cycling is the main purpose. It can be centre-based with daily cycling trips or as a cycling tour when they stay at different locations.
Profile of European cycling tourist
- Mostly male
- Generally more affluent and between 40-60 years of age
- Enjoy cycling as a form of sport or physical exercise
- Likes to be close to nature
- Often travel in couples or small groups
- Often arrange their own accommodation
What is important to cyclists outside Europe?
- Cycling infrastructure
- High quality bikes and accessories
- Cycling friendly accommodation
- Luggage transport
- Knowledgeable Guides
If your bike rental business is able to provide any of the above make sure you mention them in your marketing material: website, social media and email campaigns, to attract more European cycle tourists to your shop. As high quality bike and accessories are high on the list and if you wish to attract more European customers highlight the quality of your bikes and how well maintained they are. Good images of your rental offering will be important for increasing trust and making bookings more likely. BRM integrated Maintenance will make the job of your mechanic efficient and will save you money in the long run as you can reduce downtime of your bikes and ensure availability at all times.
TRENDS FOR EUROPEAN CYCLISTS
The popularity of e-bikes is increasing fast in Europe. For example 10-15% of Dutch booking international cycling holiday, booked an e-bike in 2013. And trend has been growing. An e-bike is great on holidays with groups of mixed fitness level or in terrain with uphills and climbs. And for the more senior cyclist.
Family and multi-generational trips.
“This trend is expected to continue due to the ageing European population and the stronger physical shape of the seniors, that like to create unforgettable memories with their children and grandchildren”, according to CBI study.
Cycling experiences as an add-on.
Cycling experiences are increasingly added as part of holiday. For example cruises, when the passengers explore the new location on rental bikes. Or city trips for excursions.
To tap into these growing trends, consider adding e-bikes to your offering. And contact any travel providers in your area to create a partnership that should be a win-win for both of you.
HOW TO HELP EUROPEAN CYCLIST FIND YOUR BIKE RENTAL SHOP?
Travellers will do research online about the destinations and products. So a good starting point is a website with quality photos and/or videos or at least a Facebook page. Read our blog on “9 Bike Rental Home Page Must-Haves”.
Most travellers would prefer to book their bikes online as the ability to have access to pricing information and live availability means travellers can spend less time on research and make their booking faster.
Bike Rental Manager offers user friendly, fully customizable online booking experience to your customers with LIVE availability and pricing to make their bike rental bookings super easy. And you can take payment at the time of the booking if you so wish.
Which european countries are biggest online booking users? Based on over 200 worldwide BRM shops, these are top 10 european countries booking rental bikes online:
- The Netherlands
BRM online booking is available in 9 languages to make the online bike booking experience easy for your European customers.
You can easily check with BRM online booking analytics where your online customers come from, what age and gender they are, are they new or returning customers etc. and tailor your marketing accordingly.
Another ways to increase your rentals to european cycling tourists is to partner with tour operators or use cycling associations to promote your rentals to their members. List of european cycling associations can be found on the website of the ECF, European Cyclists’ Federation.
These facts should be useful in marketing you bike rentals to increase your revenue. You can use BRM reporting to find out which of your bikes are most popular with your customers and buy your stock accordingly to increase your profits and use BRM reports to make sure you price your rentals right.