April was the first full month of the Covid-19 pandemic, during which micromobility companies struggled to stay afloat during a global lockdown.

In April, Lime continued to hold the top spot in App Store user ratings (4.86/5), among all micromobility companies. Though Lime also holds the top spot for cumulative App Store activity (58.1%), in April, Tier saw the highest activity in the App Store (21.9%), followed by Bird (18.6%).

Overall user satisfaction remained relatively steady compared to March 2020. Hive saw an increase of 1.4% in user satisfaction, followed by Jump (0.5%). Germany-based Tier saw a decline of -0.6%, followed by Bird (-0.1%).

The total number of App Store reviews fell 86% compared to March data, most of the cities announced a complete lockdown due to COVID19. Activity of Grin declined the most month-over-month (-96%), followed by Lime (-95%). Though most of the operators saw the App Store activity decline greater than 50%, Tier saw just about 16% decline.

If app store activity is an indicator of market share, five operators, Lime, Bird, Spin, Grin, and Voi, provided more than 90% of trips globally.

Tier was the most popular app last month, controlling 20.1% of activity globally; It also led in its home market, Germany (60.5%). In France almost all of the activity was concentrated on Dott (97.6%). Voi saw the highest activity compared to others in its home market Sweden. In the US, Spin took the top spot (59.4%).

Keeping December as the baseline, App Store activity declined by at least 75% for every operator except for Tier, whose activity astoundingly went up 155%. Growth such as this during the middle of a pandemic is hard to explain, but it appears Tier has hit on an engagement formula that actually improves on its pre-Covid baseline.

Net Promoter Score

Net Promoter Score (NPS) is a scoring system for quantifying customer loyalty. Companies generally calculate NPS by asking customers to rate their level of satisfaction on a scale of 0 to 10.

In a similar manner, App Stores ask their users to rate their level of satisfaction on a scale of 1 to 5.

Typically, on a 0 to 10, those who respond 9 or 10 are considered “promoters,” or enthusiasts who will keep buying and refer others; those who respond 7-8 are considered “passives,” customers who are satisfied but not overly enthusiastic; and those who respond 6 or less are considered “detractors,” or unhappy customers who could hurt the brand through negative reviews.

To calculate NPS for the scooter apps, I applied the following method, trying to replicate the classic scoring system.

  • Promoters (5)
  • Passives (4)
  • Detractors (1-3)

According to this system, Lime (91.76) had the highest global NPS in April, followed by Bird (90.06).

Although Lime ranked the best globally, in some key European markets, local players scored higher in customer experience. In Germany, Italy, Spain and France, Voi or Circ (now part of Bird) had a higher NPS than Lime. On the contrary, in Sweden, both Bird and Lime scored higher than their European rivals. Lime led in the U.S. as well as Australia, followed by Bird and Beam, respectively.

Micromobility, especially scooter sharing is a premium offering, that requires premium service and high levels of customer loyalty. Focussing on Customer experience is extremely important to have high value customers, who would promote your services, use them often and spend more!

User Reported Issues

Going through all user-reported issues in April from the App Stores’ comment sections, most of scooter issues can be grouped into the following categories:

  • App Issue
  • Scooter Issue
  • Cost
  • Unable to Start Ride
  • Unable to End Ride
  • Customer Support

From this month, ‘Others’ category will be omitted to have more focus not the categorisable issues.

App Issue – 36%: Bugs related to the sharing app were the most-reported user problem in March, similar to the previous month (28%). Users reported issues with time to load, login, payment setup, and more. Here are some of the user comments:

Buggy, doesn't show actual balance during the ride, in the end u don't know how much the one will be charged. I've chosen not to re-charge automatically but the app tries to charge me again and again
It will not allow me to add a credit card to my account, and I can not use Google pay with the app either for some bizarre reason.

Using mobile number for authentication is very common in micromobility and it comes with mobile number recycling issue, if it is not handled. A Jump user reported a login issues linked to this.

NO STARS IF I COULD. Uber doesn't allow accounts without a phone number but if someone used your phone number years ago before you had it, it's impossible to make an account! Fix this!

Overcharging – 14%: There were multiple reports across operators on charging over what it should be for a ride. A lime user reported being charged, without having used the app for over a year.

Not used in over a year because they offer the slowest scooters out of all their competitors. Yet they just charged me 22kr. Unable to reset my password to find out what is going on and disconnect my card.

Unable to Start/End Ride – 17%: Similar to previous months, users reported issues with Starting and Ending Rides. At least two Spin users reported to have waited ~7mins to end the ride, which is not ideal. Normally, users are penalised for End Ride issues, where the additional minutes cost more than the ride itself.

Scooters are ok, but both times my husband and I used them it took more time to "END" the ride then the actual ride itself. So for a 2.5 min ride it took nearly 7 min to stop the ride. Charged us for 10 min. App is horrible and closes you out and is just awful.
I cant end ride and than get charged More

Scooter Issue – 13%: Though no accidents were reported, unlike the last two months, users reported dead batteries, motor issues etc.

DON'T DO IT. I finally decided to try one and the battery died leaving me in a no park zone so I had to walk it back to a park zone. When I called to get a credit they promised to do so ONLY after I threatened negative reviews. They said I should have just parked it and of course since I was in a no park zone that was not possible. After the agreed to refund they didn't follow through. The $7 is not worth my time to fight them, but buyer beware!!!!!!
I was charged $27.50, the motor didnt work and i only went literally 3ft before i decided to walk.

Customer Support, Cost – 19%: Few users found the service expensive, with one SKIP user complaining about a flat minimum fee. There were also reports on bad customer service, with multiple Yulu users reporting issues with the refund of a security deposit.

Minimum flat fee is $3 even if youre on the scooter for one minute. I'm deleting the app and using Uber or Lyft scooters. I really loved Skip scooters and would seek them out over all the others scooters in DC until this bone head move. Bye bye skip
BIG SCAM, they won't refund your money and if contacted for a reason, they will tell you to wait for indefinitely and won't respond to any other queries, great customer satisfaction, you can totally trust them with your money and safety of their products.

In addition to all user comments, this time, Bird saw few angry users, not happy with the way Bird dealt with the recent job cuts.

I'm deleting my app. I'll use Lime next time I need a scooter. The cowardly way you guys laid off your employees is shameful. Shame on you.
Just downloaded this app so i can make a review. Like how you fired so many people off your company like that. Congrats. You f-ed yourself. Hope you go bankrupt 😍
Can't continue to support a company that fires hundreds of workers during crisis.

Note: Data gathered from 150+ Apple and Google app stores across the globe. If interested in more insights on the data collected, do send me a message!

Content Collaboration: Micromobility Industries is a digital media and events company devoted to the future of movement. Subscribe to their newsletter here.

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