Outstanding SWOT Analysis of redBus – The Largest Online Bus Ticket Company

Updated on: Dec 4, 2021
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My name is Aditya Shastri and I have written this case study with the help of my students from IIDE's online digital marketing courses in India.

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Last time, we saw the impressive business model of redBus, this time we will look at the outstanding SWOT analysis of redBus.

redBus is one of the largest bus E-Ticketing platforms not only in India but all across the globe. Founded in 2006, the online ticket counter has surely come a long way in taking over the market with the idea of booking confirmed tickets with our fingertips just by clicking on their app rather than going out in the hot sun and standing for hours only to get a waiting list ticket.

redBus has over 18 million users from 24 states, 30,000+ outlets along 80,000 routes, and 2500 bus operators. And known as the largest online bus ticket company.

Another big reason for the success of redBus is its eye-catching and innovative marketing. With the world now living indoors, everyone has to adapt to going online for everything but this wasn’t the case for redBus now, was it? redBus adapted to online functioning and marketing long before anyone and this change was a big factor in the success of redBus. 

Marketing is essential for the growth of any business, to know more about marketing and its digital aspect, check out Free Digital Marketing Masterclass by Karan Shah, the founder and CEO of IIDE.

In this blog, we’ll go through redBus’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats in-depth, but before starting with the SWOT analysis of redBus, first, let’s learn a little about the company.

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About redBus

SWOT Analysis of redBus - redBus Facebook Cover Photo
(redBus Facebook Cover Photo, Source: Facebook)

redBus was founded in the year 2006 by three people, Phanindra Sama, Sudhakar Pasupunuri and Charan Padmaraju, all of whom are engineers from the Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani, India.

redBus is India’s first organized bus ticket booking service. It is also the biggest aggregator of bus tickets in the country. redBus’ business proposal is simple – the company can book your bus tickets online. Once you log onto the website, you can choose tickets in 15+ states, across  80,000 routes, through a network of 2500 bus operators, in one click. The service allows passengers to choose their seats as well as book return tickets.

According to the latest news, redBus is soon coming up with a rail ticket booking application named ‘redRail’ in association with IRCTC.


Quick Stats on redBus
Founder Phanindra Sama, Charan Padmaraju, Sudhakar Pasupunuri
Year Founded 2006
Origin New Delhi, India
No. of Employees 641
Company Type Private
Market Cap $ 110 Million (2021)
Annual Revenue $ 85 Million (2019)
Net Income/ Profit N/A


SWOT Analysis of redBus - redBus Application
(redBus Application, Source: Bookstru)

Services by redBus

  • Bus Tickets
  • Ryde
  • redRail
  • rPool

Competitors of redBus

  • Trabol
  • TicketGoose
  • MakeMyTrip
  • AbhiBus
  • Yatra
  • Mantis Technologies Pvt. Ltd.
  • Simplotel

Now that we know all the inside details about redBus, it’s time to dig into the SWOT Analysis of redBus.

SWOT Analysis of redBus

As the name goes a SWOT analysis tells us about the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of a company. Such analyses are often done by companies to know their standing in the market. These analyses are not only done by companies to see their standing but also to see the standing of their competition.

To better understand the SWOT analysis of redBus, refer to the infographic below:

SWOT Analysis of redBus - SWOT Infographics of redBus

So let us first start by looking at the strengths of redBus from the SWOT analysis of redBus.

Strengths of redBus

Strengths are the unique skills and advantages a company has over other companies in the market.

  • Online Presence: redBus started its journey as an online app. This gives redBus a huge advantage in today’s time as now everybody has to change their functions from an offline to an online presence.
  • Employee Benefits During a Pandemic: Since redBus from the very beginning has been an online platform, the employees of redBus have been accustomed to working in an indoor and online environment.

SWOT Analysis of redBus - redBus Careers
(redBus Careers, Source: LinkedIn)

Useful Tip: As you can see that the businesses that adapted digital marketing strategies from the beginning are now generating profits in 10 digits. Just like redBus, many offline businesses are switching online. These businesses are also offering work from home facilities just as redBus for the ones who are equipped with the knowledge of various digital marketing skills.

If you want to grab some work from home opportunities then first you must learn several digital marketing skills from subject area experts and digital enthusiasts because their knowledge and expertise will help you to mould into skilled professionals of today & tomorrow. The knowledge will also help you to book the seat of opportunity you were wishing to have.     

  • Innovative Marketing: redBus uses very innovative and attractive marketing strategies and this has been a trait since the birth of the company. Attractive marketing attracts a lot of customers which helps the company to grow profoundly. 
  • User Friendly: redBus started with an online app, and brought booking bus tickets to our fingertips, today there is nobody in the world who doesn’t use a mobile phone. This gives redBus a huge advantage as they have had the most experience in dealing with things online.
  • No Middleman: redBus works online, it cuts the use of middlemen. A customer books his tickets and receives them directly through the app.

Weaknesses of redBus

Weaknesses as we all know are things that pull back the company and hold it down from achieving its true potential.

  • The problem of Interaction: While online has its perks and benefits, it also has its fair share of disadvantages, the biggest of which is no direct interaction. This can cause a lot of problems in case there is a mix up in tickets or seating arrangements etc.
  • The Abundance of Competition: Competition is good but too much competition can be dangerous for a business too. In the case of redBus, many other companies are offering the same services. In such scenarios, it is essential to come up with something new from time to time which brings us to redBus next weakness that is:
  • Lack of Innovation: In the business of selling online tickets there isn’t much one can do more. In such precis cooking up with new things is difficult and this leads to it being a weakness of the company.

Opportunities for redBus

Opportunities are certain situations in which if things are done at the right time and right way, entire scenarios of companies can change leading to the companies benefit and boon.

  • Pandemic: The pandemic even though a terrible thing can be used to one’s benefit if used properly. Due to the pandemic, all companies have been forced to go online from offline based functions,  redBus has been online since its birth and this gives it an edge over others because it knows the online interface better than other companies.
  • Social Media: There has been an increase in the number of people using social media around the world. redBus can use the options of social media platforms to promote its business and solve the first weakness which also includes gathering customer feedback.
  • Tour to Places: redBus can start offering tours to places in India which will bring massive bookings from the customers who are newly married or a small family who is planning to go for a short yet fantastic tour. 
  • Logo on Buses: redBus can make agreements with its travelling partner and bus operators to paste the redBus logo on their buses since redBus is giving a big bag of business to these operators. This initiative will promote the business of redBus at a greater level.
  • Rising Fuel Prices: Since the fuel prices have been rising tremendously in the past months, it is an advantageous situation for redBus as more and more people will be using public transport and this will cause a rise in the users of redBus.

Threats to redBus

Threats are the exact opposite of opportunities. While opportunities cause a boon in the business, threats cause a bane.

  • Lockdown: While it is an opportunity, the pandemic is also a bane for redBus since if the number of COVID 19 cases increase, states can put a lockdown which ceases the operations of buses which will cause a huge loss for redBus.
  • New Competition: There have been many new companies that have started the same business as redBus which causes more competition and can lead to loss of customers and financial losses.
  • Voice of Action from Agents: The redBus business has stopped businesses of travel agents who were used to taking a commission for the booking. Because of hatred, these parties can certainly start deploying the name of redBus by spreading fake rumours to increase their business in the market.

This ends our outstanding SWOT analysis of redBus. Let us conclude our learning below.

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To Conclude

redBus has had enormous success since its launch in 2006. There are tons of bus services available 24×7 and meet all the needs of the traveller. redBus is wildly famous and welcomed among the common people.

As it eases its major issue with finding a fine bus for any destination. It’s one step closer to fulfilling every need of a traveller along with its destination requirements. redBus was one of its kind and it’s a true inspiration for developing services for the betterment of common people.

So, we also now know that online Marketing skills are gaining importance in today’s corporate world. As in the case of redBus, digital presence only helped them to come up with a solution and establish a great venture out of that. You can learn these digital marketing skills too, with our IIDE’s 3 Month Advanced Online Digital Marketing Course.

We hope this blog on the SWOT analysis of redBus has given you a good insight into the company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.

If you enjoy in-depth company research just like the SWOT analysis of redBus, check out our IIDE Knowledge portal for more fascinating case studies.

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Aditya Shastri

Lead Trainer & Head of Learning & Development at IIDE

Leads the Learning & Development segment at IIDE. He is a Content Marketing Expert and has trained 6000+ students and working professionals on various topics of Digital Marketing. He has been a guest speaker at prominent colleges in India including IIMs......[Read full bio]

1 Comment

  1. George

    It is a good blog.


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