Most installers will be happy to learn that selling more solar takes no extra work. With these simple tricks, you can close deals faster and easier than ever been.
1. Give Your Team the Tools They Need
Use the right technology to convert more leads into customers.
To a salesperson, the saying “time is money” has a literal meaning. Lost selling time due to soft costs is a common concern for sales teams because every minute lost is money left on the table. The ability to close deals with customers is closely related to making every minute count. For this reason, sales managers are constantly looking for ways to manage time more efficiently.
Minimizing “busy work” and giving your sales team the right tools will result in more sales, higher revenue, and a better customer experience. Did you know that it takes 12 positive experiences to make up for one negative experience? (Salesforce.com). Furthermore, 78% of consumers have reconsidered an intended purchase due to a negative customer experience (Visualistan.com). Even a top-performing sales team can turn a "Yes" into a "No" if they don't have the right tools.
Technology is the number one tool a sales team must have to close a sale. Yet because every business has specific needs, using the right technology makes all the difference. Choosing a software platform specifically designed for the solar industry will guarantee that your solar sales team has the right tools to close the deal.
Give your team the specific tools they need most to make every minute count.
2. Slash Soft Costs to Scale Faster
Time is money, so choose a sales platform that guarantees to save both.
With the SunShot initiative, the Department of Energy (DOE) has made it their mission to encourage innovative solutions supporting the solar industry's growth. Their top priority? Slashing soft costs and make solar energy more accessible and affordable for U.S. citizens.
Although the hard costs of solar are declining, soft costs are a persistent obstacle for the solar industry. They affect solar companies of all sizes, and small companies are the most affected. Therefore, the productivity gains associated with lower costs are vital to small business growth. By making the most of your time and money, you can expand your business faster.
The areas of focus for the DOE SunShot program include: customer acquisition, financing and contracting, permitting, interconnection, and inspection, installation and performance, as well as operations and maintenance are soft costs that require solutions. When selecting a technology platform for your solar business, look for a solution that is trusted and endorsed by the DOE for reducing soft costs.
3. Automate Everything
Automate, automate, automate. Reduce friction to run your business like a well-oiled machine.
Thanks to the DOE Sunshot program and a large selection of technology platforms on the market, you can finally say goodbye to wasting time on repetitive tasks and manual calculations. Nowadays, there are a variety of software tools available for every step of the solar sales process, and using them will increase efficiency and revenue. Also with cloud technology, utility database integrations, and more, you can sell solar anytime, anywhere. By implementing a CRM platform, businesses gain an average return of $5.60 for every $1 spent. (getbase.com). But why stop there? Customer Relationship Management is only one step of the sales cycle. By choosing an end-to-end platform, your solar business will be able to access every tool from one place. In addition to saving time by avoiding extra steps, you will save money and close deals faster.
4.Compete with the Big Guys
Level the playing field using the same software that big companies have at a fraction of the cost.
As a small business, you are more powerful than you think. There are distinct advantages that small businesses have over big corporations. Some of the top strengths include the consumer preference to receive better customer service and dealing with local companies they perceive to be trustworthy.
These preferences are driven by a desire to not only feel good about what they buy but who they buy from and how they feel about their buying experience. A 2011 market survey showed that 80% of Americans agree that smaller companies place a greater emphasis on customer service than larger businesses. This suggests that small businesses can actually win over new customers by differentiating themselves from the big guys with superior customer service.
Small businesses can leverage this to offer more personal experiences and the convenience of being a local business. A research shows that 9 out of 10 U.S. consumers say they would pay more to ensure a superior customer experience. In addition to these opportunities, small businesses can maintain a competitive advantage by incorporating technology into their processes. And now you can impress your customers by using state-of-the-art software without breaking the bank. To get the most out of your platform, choose a software solution that offers tools such as: Google Earth integration, pre-approved financing options, and clean proposal generation. Not only save time, but reduce friction and create confidence in the buying process for customers and salespeople alike.
5.Understand Your Market
Generate clean proposals that cater to every customer.
The best way your business can maximize opportunity is to understand your customer. To truly understand your demographic, you need to be aware of your customer's motivations to buy and their buying concerns. As in any market, potential consumers are motivated by varying interests and may not prioritize these in the same ways. One customer may be motivated primarily by the financial benefits, while another may be more interested in environmental sustainability benefits. Even recognizing the socially based motivations of solar consumers can influence your profitability and productivity.
Providing customers with materials like branded signs or business cards can turn them into powerful social influencers. People are more likely to choose a business recommended by a friend than make a blind buying decision. It is essential to know a customer's main interests in order to use them successfully in the buying decision.
The best way to address decision factors in the sales process is giving all the information needed in the proposal. You can use a proposal generation tool to calculate energy analytics, cash flow options, and an environmental impact report to ensure that every buying factor is covered. Implementing an end-to-end sales platform with a built-in proposal generator do the hard work and ensure that the quoting process is seamless and accurate. Sell more solar with an end-to-end automation platform by giving your customers everything they need to say “Yes!”
Co-Written by Megan Davis and Renee Worley
 American Express Survey 2011
 Customer Experience Impact Report by Harris Interactive/RightNow 2010