Technology

Rental Limo Puts Operators First For Online Bookings

Posted on November 21, 2013 by LCT Staff - Also by this author

Rental Limo executives (L to R) Brian Gaputis, executive account director; Keith Gaputis, co-founder and CTO; Ryan Hilberth, founder and CEO.
Rental Limo executives (L to R) Brian Gaputis, executive account director; Keith Gaputis, co-founder and CTO; Ryan Hilberth, founder and CEO.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Three partners with a passion for bringing web efficiencies to businesses have come out with the latest booking software to hit the limousine industry, called Rental Limo. Ryan Hilberth, founder and CEO, Keith Gaputis, co-founder and CTO, and Brian Gaputis, executive account director, first premiered their new software in February at the International LCT Show in Las Vegas. Since then, the trio has been working with operators nationwide to connect them with interested clients in their markets.

The premise is simple: When you go to www.rentalimo.com, you are presented with different ways of searching for the type of service you want. You can click on the map of your state to see the providers available and enter your zipcode or you can get started right away entering the information for your trip, such as the date, time, and number of passengers. A list of providers is then shown with each of their rates.

From there, it’s a simple three-step process of scheduling the trip, choosing the vehicle and operator, and then filling out credit card information to confirm the booking. For customers, the straightforward and interactive menus make it easy to book what they want. And for each operator that partners with Rental Limo, they get their own company page, with pictures, text, and branding so they can differentiate themselves with their own style and message.

Social Media Marketing Plug Ins

Rental Limo also has built-in social media buttons that make it easy for operators to cross promote various deals they have on Rental Limo onto their own company social media pages. The Twitter and Facebook plug-ins allow operators to share posts with the simple click of a button.

Limousine companies are strategically marketed within their service areas, and priority level and order of rankings for each city are based on the date of sign-up. Rental Limo also offers in-house feature ads that pop-up on their website and advertise partnering limo companies.

Rental Limo’s website, rentallimo.com, offers 47 operators servicing 19 different states and over a thousand different cities in the US.

Rental Limo’s website, rentallimo.com, offers 47 operators servicing 19 different states and over a thousand different cities in the US.

“Essentially what we do is market and promote limo companies,” CEO Ryan Hilberth says. “We create an architecture for your website to be found and geo-targeted.” Hilberth founded Rental Limo in 2012 but first started researching the idea in 2010. At the time, Hilberth had accumulated a decade’s worth of experience in web development and design, and felt there was a need in the limousine industry for its web search and booking processes to be improved.

“I saw a huge market with a huge void in something that connects the customer in the city with the operator who’s able to service that region,” he says. “That seemed to be one of the biggest complaints in our research. Operators were getting leads coming in from places they couldn’t service, so we made that a priority with Rental Limo.”

Rental Limo offers three packages to its customers, with differing levels of placement and active advertising the company will do on RentalLimo.com, and encourages operators to take full advantage of the different marketing aspects of the site.

One of the unique things about Rental Limo is the limo operator profile pages are specific to each company. Each profile can show pictures of a company’s fleet, logo, location and contact information.

Operators In Control

“As a member of Rental Limo, operators can now empower their own [companies] with our technology and even use it on their own websites, so our three-step booking process can be used,” says Hilberth. Rental Limo’s customer support during the start and set-up phase is handled by Brian Gaputis. “He walks them through everything they need to get set up in 24 hours. Usually by the second day, the company profiles are live,” Hilberth says.

Avi Mazouz of Henry’s Limousines in New York City started using Rental Limo after first meeting them at the ILCT Show in Las Vegas in February. He has seen a marked increase in his retail business coming from his listing on RentalLimo.com.

Avi Mazouz of Henry’s Limousines in New York City started using Rental Limo after first meeting them at the ILCT Show in Las Vegas in February. He has seen a marked increase in his retail business coming from his listing on RentalLimo.com.

All of the operators are pre-qualified by Rental Limo. Proof of insurance and local enforcement agency numbers have to be submitted to Rental Limo before the operator can sign up, so customers know they are only getting referred to licensed and professional limo companies and not gypsy outfits.

So far, the response from operators has been strong. Avi Mazouz of Henry Limousines in New York City says that after partnering with Rental Limo to help increase his market reach for work, he has received more retail work to fill in on the weekends, which were once slow business times. Mazouz says he also has taken more wedding jobs through requests on Rental Limo.

“I met Ryan [Hilberth] at the Las Vegas ILCT Show, and right away I loved the idea and signed on the spot,” he says, “and since then it’s helped my company expand where I get work. It’s good technology, and it’s working.”

Michael Rosario of Twins Luxury Limousine of Jacksonville, Fla., says of working with Rental Limo: “They are very personable. Ryan the owner and I had a great talk as to what he had in mind and where the industry is going, and I thought it was a great site and signed up.”

Michael Rosario of Twins Luxury Limousine of Jacksonville, Fla., says of working with Rental Limo: “They are very personable. Ryan the owner and I had a great talk as to what he had in mind and where the industry is going, and I thought it was a great site and signed up.”

Michael Rosario of Twins Luxury Limousine, in Jacksonville, Fla., says he has seen his business go up by 8% to10% working with Rental Limo, and that he appreciates the way Rental Limo promotes his company along with the service. “The customer actually gets to see your name and telephone number, unlike everyone else who hides you, they put you up front, so when the customer connects, they connect with my number so we have a personal direct contact with the clients.”

The Next Step

For the future, Hilberth says he wants to continue to reach out to more operators, while also researching and developing new ways of updating and expanding RentalLimo.com’s capabilities.

Rental Limo is finishing development for its mobile website as well as special operator control panel at the time of this print, and the company is excited for its new releases and growing potential in the industry. “We want to make the Rental Limo user experience as simple and intuitive as possible for both the rider and the limousine operator,” says Keith Gaputis, co-founder of the company.

And with the pace of mobile technology speeding up in the transportation industry, Hilberth said this when asked if Rental Limo will be attempting to serve limousines on demand in the future: “Our company began this year only taking reservations 48 hours out. But now we’re booking limos as early as 12 hours in advance, so we’ll see where it goes from here.”  

Booking In 3 Easy Steps

The booking process for Rental Limo is straightforward and consists of three steps:

1. Details of the ride are entered, including time of pickup, location, passenger number, vehicle type, and occasion.

2. A listing of available limo operators is presented with their different prices and vehicles shown.

3. After selecting one from the listing, the client enters their credit card information and confirms the booking.

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