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What Is The Sharing Economy?

 Explanation Of Its Outline And Examples

As the new average era progresses, creating new business models will be the key to continued business development for companies. Many companies are focusing on the sharing economy as one option. In this article, we will confirm the sharing economy and then introduce specific examples of sharing economy services while exploring the market size and potential.

What Is The Sharing Economy?

The term “sharing economy” has increasingly appeared in Japanese media in recent years. Some of our readers may have used sharing economy services. Or, there may be business people considering it a new business for their company. However, there are surprisingly few people who can accurately explain what the sharing economy is. First, let’s review the essential knowledge you need to know about the sharing economy.

Overview Of The Sharing Economy

The sharing economy refers to a new economic movement in which ordinary consumers provide or share goods, places, skills, etc., with those who need them and refers to such forms of services. Ridesharing, in which ordinary drivers transport passengers with smartphone apps in their cars, and private lodging, in which vacant rooms in properties owned by ordinary people are rented out to travelers through websites and apps, are examples of the sharing economy. This is a representative example.

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Traditional business models have focused on B2C, in which companies sell goods and services to consumers, and B2B, in which companies provide goods and services to other companies. Sharing economy services are characterized by many C2C business models in which consumers conduct transactions with each other, which does not apply there. In CtoC services, companies do not directly provide products or services to consumers but only offer platforms such as websites and apps connecting consumers. (There are also B2C and B2B sharing economy services in which companies rent goods and assets owned by other companies or individuals only when needed.)

Subscription services are a business model similar to the sharing economy. A subscription service is a business model that allows consumers to use and experience goods and services by paying a fixed fee to a company regularly. The two are similar in that consumers do not own things. Still, in the sharing economy, people use things only when they want and need them and pay for them each time, whereas subscriptions are a system that allows consumers to use something only when they want and need it and pay for it each time. The difference is that they are intended for use.

Five Areas Of Sharing Economy Services

There are various sharing economy services, but the following five are considered the main genres.

  1. Services that share space: private lodging, home sharing, parking lot sharing, etc.
  2. Services that share transportation: car sharing, ride sharing, bicycle sharing, etc.
  3. Services that share goods: flea market apps, rentals Services, etc.
  4. Services for sharing skills: Housekeeping, childcare sharing, crowdsourcing, etc.
  5. Services for sharing money: Crowdfunding

The sharing economy has spread to Japan in recent years, and the number of companies entering sharing services continues to increase. Among the five genres, the one that is growing remarkably is the service for sharing skills (4).

For consumers to provide goods, space, and means of transportation, they must own real estate and private cars, but they do not need to possess skills, so there are fewer barriers to participation. It’s short on the mark. This makes it easier for companies to enter the market as platform operators. In the case of CtoC services, the more skilled providers there are, the more users there will be, and the service can be expected to become more popular.

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