Google Maps Platform and transport industry, a success alliance

"Google Maps plays an important role in our mobile app and Intelligence Partner have supported us over the last 4 years. Throughout our aggressive growth, we're glad to be able to rely on their knowledge and expertise in Google Cloud technologies." - Company’s CTO and Co-founder

THE ORGANISATION

It is a company of international transport networks that connects users with vehicles through a mobile app for smartphones. Being one of the largest transportation network companies in the Spanish-speaking world, they operate in Spain, Mexico, Chile, Colombia, Peru, Brazil, Panama, Ecuador and many more.

THE CHALLENGE

Best route as a service

They count with a large number of vehicles (assets) and as they keep on growing and expanding their international presence they increase the numbers of assets as well. This leads to some inconveniences and issues when it comes to choosing which driver (vehicle) is the best fit to pick up a passenger, many factors come into play such as proximity, routing and real time traffic information.

Improving customers experience through accuracy

Before exploiting all the potential Google Maps APIs have to to offer, many of their clients had issues when inputting their address which led to lost revenue as the drivers were heading towards the wrong pick up address. This resulted in unsatisfied customers as their estimated time of pick up was also inaccurate.

Competitive strategy while increasing margins: Fixed price

They also wanted to offer their final clients a fixed price per ride and needed to find a way to offer this option to the client without losing any revenue. How to offer a service with a fixed price that works according the real costs of such activity? Can they use Google’s data to create a service with an extra added value yet still maintain their margins?

THE SOLUTION

Best route as a service

The App  needs to allocate the closets driver to the passenger ordering the services, this is a complex matrix in itself which become even more complex when the number of drivers increases. To resolve this matter we introduced them to the Distance Matrix API which helped them find the closest driver to the passenger while taking all external factors into account such as real time traffic.

  • Distance Matrix API : provides information on the distance and duration of a journey from multiple destinations to a given point (place of the emergency) taking traffic into account.

It helps them calculate which driver is closest to the passenger. This saved them money in fuel and reduce passenger waiting time.  

Improving customers experience through accuracy

They needed an accurate location system so they didn’t miss a pick up due to a wrong typing address. Places API would help them reduce error margin of address searches. Also, Geocoding API would reassure the coordinates are correct.

Places API – offers, among other things:

  • autocomplete → provides a query prediction service for text-based geographic searches.

Geocoding API – allows the geo-positioning of the device from which the alert was transmitted.

Geocoding is the process that transforms addresses (such as, “Torre Picasso, AZCA, Plaza de Carlos Trias Bertran, 1, 28020 Madrid, Spain”) into geographic coordinates (such as latitude 40.4505067 and longitude -3.6930797222222225) that serve to place markers or determine a position on the map.

Competitive strategy while increasing margins: Fixed price

Clients using the App will obtain a final fixed price of the journey before accepting the services. This information adds value to the service as the client has a final say in whether or not he will want to hire the services. This also adds security as the price is fixed, therefore the price will always be the same even if there is a traffic jam or any unexpected detours. This is possible thanks to both Distance matrix and Directions API.

Distance Matrix API – provides information on the distance and duration of a journey from multiple destinations to a given point (place of the emergency) taking traffic into account.

Directions API – among other functions, it calculates travel time based on past and present traffic conditions.

THE RESULTS

Ultimately, many are the improvements that Google Maps APIS have brought to their business. Their internalization, fast growing, customer experience improvement  and even their competitive strategy are based on Google Maps services.

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