RentalHawk.com recently launched a website to offer live, local rate comparisons for the equipment rental industry. The website uses a “Travelocity”-type system allowing rental customers to compare rates from competing rental companies in their area.
RentalHawk.com co-founders Robert Gray and Mark Richter are veterans of the rental industry, having worked for companies such as Briggs Equipment, Diamondback Rentals, United Rentals and others. They believe the future of equipment rental lies on the Internet where customers can find instant rate comparisons on a 24/7 basis.
“Now with the emergence of the Internet, purchasing agents out there are very savvy,” Richter told RER. “They want to be able to find the information on the Internet because increasingly that’s the way they do business.”
RentalHawk.com allows rental companies to list equipment for each individual branch location and manage rates for that equipment in any city they choose to service. This allows each branch true fleet and rental rate management in real time. “If a branch manager in one area sees that he just got five 20-ton cranes come back because a big job shut down, he might say ‘I need to get out some cranes so I’ll be aggressive on my rates,’” says Richter. “On the flip side, if he’s down to his last 710 backhoe and there are some big projects coming up, he might list that a little higher because a 710 backhoe is on short supply in his area. It gives managers discretion on the rates.”
Consumers on Rentalhawk.com can search and sort rental companies by location and price and see past-customer ratings on each rental company as well. Using the “Talon Rating System,” consumers can determine if a rental company is trustworthy, priced appropriately, and good at customer service.
“We really believe in our talon rating system on our website because that’s going to allow these rental companies to differentiate themselves not on just price but on service, dependability, serviceability and price,” said Richter.
The consumer can rent equipment directly from the RentalHawk website. The customer is guaranteed to receive the rate displayed by each vendor at the time of order. A contract can be generated immediately via the RentalHawk website, listing additional fees such as pickup and delivery, taxes and environmental fees, or the customer, after finding the deal he or she wants online, can finalize the deal on the phone or in person if he or she prefers.
“RentalHawk levels the playing field, whether it’s the big companies like H&E and Sunbelt or smaller independent companies, to compete on the open market, their service and the value they provide,” adds Gray.
Rental companies pay a basic monthly fee to list on the service, the basic fee giving them 10 cities and 25 category classes of equipment. They can pay extra to list more cities or more categories of equipment.
For more information, visit www.rentalhawk.com.