How to Start a SUP Rental Business: An 8 Step Plan

How to Start a SUP Rental Business: An 8 Step Plan

If you love the SUP board life, if you’d rather be out on the water rather than on land, or if you’re an entrepreneur with a thirst for adventure- starting your own SUP board rental business may be just the thing for you!

Though it may seem simple enough to grab a few boards and set up a little oceanside shop, there’s more to starting your own SUP board rental company. But don’t let phrases like “business plan” or “revenue streams” scare you off.

We’ve got an in-depth, easy to follow 8 Step Plan to make your dreams of beaches, boards and business come true.

8 STEP PLAN TO STARTING A SUP BOARD RENTAL BUSINESS

STEP 1: FIND YOUR KEY PARTNERS

This is a crucial first step. Key Partners are the network of suppliers and other businesses that will make your SUP board rental endeavor thrive. Forging partnerships with other brands and non-competitors that are relevant to the overall SUP board experience will optimize your business model, reduce risk, and help you acquire resources.

SUP Board Rental Business Key Partnerships:
  • Strategic alliances with resorts, tourist bureaus, campgrounds, boat rental places & Airbnb properties.
  • A relationship with a reliable SUP Board supplier. Promote their brand and buy in bulk, in exchange for special pricing on their products.
  • Bulk discounts with suppliers of beach gear, life vests, coolers, even waterproof cell phone cases.
  • Joint ventures with a local gym, yoga classes, or a sporting goods store.
  • Joint online campaigns with adventure bloggers and boarding communities through email marketing, giveaways and social media.

STEP 2: INDEX YOUR KEY RESOURCES

Key Resources are the most important assets needed to make the business work. For a SUP board rental business this is pretty obvious- it’s the boards. But there are also other key resources you will need.

south shore paddle boards
SUP Board Rental Business Key Resources:

Physical Resources

  • Rental Items
  • A Storefront (Obviously in a location close to a body of water)
  • If you are a mobile rental business then you will need a means of transporting
  • Point of Sales and booking system
  • Any items you wish to sell along side your rental gear

 

Human Resources

  • Staff and Management
  • Instructors and Professional Guides
  • Event Coordinator

 

Intellectual Resources

  • The Brand
  • Proprietary Knowledge
  • Customer Data Base
  • Partnerships (from step 1)

 

Monetary Resources

  • Insurance for your business and liability insurance for individual renters

STEP 3: LIST OUT YOUR KEY ACTIVITIES

Key Activities are the actions a company engages in to make the business model work. For a SUP board rental business the #1 Key Activity is self explanatory. But there are many more activities you can include in your rental business.

 SUP Board Rental Business Key Activities:

Renting

 

Instructing

 

Parties

  • Vacations
  • Summer Day Camps
  • SUP Board Races
  • SUP Board Fishing Competitions
  • Selling Goods

 

Souvenirs

  • Beach Supplies: sunscreen, sunglasses, bathing suits etc.
  • Goods With Your Logo: tee shirts, water bottles, floatie keychains

STEP  4: DEFINE YOUR VALUE PROPOSITION

Value Proposition is what distinguishes your business from the other businesses. It’s your unique stamp on the market and the value only your business can offer. For a SUP board renter there are a number of  Value Propositions that will make your brand stand out.

Brand-of-the-Year-1024x450
SUP Board Rental Business Value Propositions:

Quality

  • Having far superior SUP boards than that of your competitors
  • Become a certified SUP instructor through WPA or another industry body
  • Training, guiding, and working with SUP board experts

 

Pricing

  • Low Cost
  • Competitive Deals & Seasonal Discounts
  • Bundle Offers and Family Packages
  • More for Less: charging less for more time rented
  • Experience

 

Have above-and-beyond customer service

  • Offer individual instruction courses
  • Have a private dressing room and showers
  • Give special guided tours: sunset tours, phosphorescent tours, adventure seeker tours, tide pool tours, etc...

 

Convenience

  • Early/Late hours
  • Location nearest the beach, waterfront, or dock
  • Offer to have the SUP boards dropped-off and picked-up for them
  • A wide variety and large selection of SUP boards
  • Easy online booking

STEP 5: CLARIFY YOUR CUSTOMER RELATIONSHIP:

Customer Relationships are how you create customer acquisition and increase sales. These relationships are defined by the way you interact with the customer. For a SUP board rental business there are several ways to approach this. None of them are mutually exclusive.

SUP Board Rental Business Customer Relationships:

Personal Assistance

Human to Human interactions like…

  • Completing transactions with customers at the Point of Sale. Ether in store or at an agreed meeting place like a beach resort or boat dock
  • Arranging booking & answering questions over the phone, through email, or social media
  • Giving instructions, guides, rules and tips in person

 

Dedicated Personal Assistance

Human to Representative interactions that expand beyond a single transaction and are maintained over longer periods of time, like...

  • Working with an event coordinator for festivals, beach parties, summer camps, or family reunions
  • Working with a resort or hotel events manager
  • SUP Lessons over a length of time

 

Self-Service

Customers are given the means to help themselves through...

  • Online booking
  • Designated drop-off and pick-up areas
  • Online forms and waivers

 

Communities

  • Create online communities through your social media and website that revolve around water sports and your brand. This will allow you to market yourself, while keeping an eye on the wants and needs of your targeted consumers.

STEP 6: IDENTIFY YOUR CUSTOMER CHANNELS:

Once you understand your customer relationships, you need to define the stages of interactions you have with them. Renting a SUP board has several phases, or channels, that customers go through, from booking to final drop-off and beyond. A good business plan identifies these channels, which determine a customer’s overall experience, and defines how these channels interact and play off each other.

SUP Board Rental Business Customer Channels:

Awareness

How are customers made aware of your SUP board rental business?

  • Digital Marketing Campaigns, blogs, sales, newsletters, social media presence, SEO & PPC
  • Prime location where there’s plenty of foot traffic
  • Events, races, classes, beach parties
  • Offer discounts through resorts, gyms, sports stores, tourist info centers

 

Evaluation

How can customers be helped to evaluate your SUP Boards and services?

  • Include info on your website and in-store about the quality of the boards
  • Showcase your reviews on your website. Perhaps offer a free hour of rental for each yelp review
  • Establish yourself as a SUP Board authority online to encourage customers to view your brand as a reliable source though informative blogs
  • Included detailed pictures of the products you offer and of people using them on your website and in advertisements

 

Transaction

How can you facilitate transactions?

  • Allow people to prepay and make purchases through your ecommerce site
  • Lose the checkout counter, use a tablet

 

Guarantee

How are your value propositions delivered?

  • Quality SUP boards speak for themselves
  • Have itineraries for guided tours and classes in store and online
  • Offer bundles before transaction when they apply
  • Offer coupon codes when booking online.

 

Support

What after-sales services do your customers expect?

  • Stay connected through newsletters and social media
  • Updates on new products and events

STEP 7: DESIGNATE YOUR CUSTOMER SEGMENTS

To better serve your customers you should break them down into groups or segments. The typical SUP board renter is probably someone who is interested in an active lifestyle, on vacation, or just having fun with friends. But there are deeper ways to analyze your potential customers to accurately meet their needs. Since SUP board renting is somewhere between a mass and niche market, you won’t need to distinguish much between the segments, but it’s best to be aware of them.

SUP Board Rental Business Customer Segments:

Customers Seeking Deals or Offers

  • This makes up most of the general public. Who doesn’t love a sale?  Meet their needs by honoring your offers without question.

 

Customers Enticed Through Online Marketing Efforts

  • Nowadays most of your customers will find out about your business through search engines. That’s why it’s crucial to optimize your SEO efforts. Meet their needs by making it effortless to find, book and pay for your services.

 

Customers Reached Through Different Distribution Channels

  • These customers are the ones who find out about your services at the gym, through a resort or even another website. Meet their needs by having all your information readily available and up to date on location.

 

Customers Requiring a Special Relationship

  • These are the customers who need extra attention. People with handicaps, children, and the elderly. Meet their needs by having extra safety precautions and easier to use options.

 

Customers With Different Profitabilities

  • These are customers who bring in different revenue. Including charity organizations who you may charge a base or discounted rate. Meet their needs by giving them the same quality service you would for customers with higher profitability.

 

Customers Wanting Different Aspects of the Services

  • There will always be that one case where a customer wants a different aspect of your services. Like a couple who wants to get married on SUP boards, or a shark attack film needs props. Meet their needs by giving them a fair price and following up on your agreed deals.

STEP 8:  GENERATE YOUR REVENUE STREAMS

Revenue streams are the ways you make cash (not profit). As a SUP rental company there is more than one way to generate revenue. The list of Key Activities sums up what you charge for, revenue streams are how you charge for those activities and goods.

SUP Board Rental Business Revenue Streams:

Rental

Exchanging money for temporary exclusive rights

  • Charge hourly
  • Charge daily
  • Charge per use
  • Charge per person

 

Assets

Charging for goods and services

  • Charging group rates for tours and classes
  • Charging per person for lessons
  • Including lessons free

 

Subscriptions

Repeated access to services for a recurring fee

  • Charge monthly for unlimited access to SUP boards
  • Charge a membership fee for unlimited access to classes and tours
  • Offer season passes

RENTAL BUSINESS

START YOUR OWN SUP RENTAL BUSINESS

A stand up paddle board rental business can be a good place to get started in the industry. YOLO Board carries a diverse selection of boards suitable for rentals including the indestructible YOLO Yak, the Hammerhead and the ever popular YOLO Board Inflatable line up. We’ve been renting paddle boards for 10 years so talk with one of our experts to see what’s right for you in your community.

 

START YOUR OWN PADDLE BOARD EXPERIENCE TOUR PROGRAM

Starting your own Paddle Board experience tour is a great way to get into the Paddle Boarding industry without having to own your own brick-and-mortar location. Contact us to find out how easy and inexpensive it can be to start right away.

You Only Live Once - Make it count!

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