Lead Quantification

Unlock the Full Potential of Your Solar Leads

Discover the challenges faced by solar sales teams in a competitive market and how to overcome them in this blog. Explore residential solar market trends, changing demographics, and the impact of technology on sales.

It’s a great time to go solar! Despite new government support for renewable energy and promising early adoption by consumers, solar sales teams still struggle to sell a product with limited demand. While we’re all hoping to see a boost in residential solar system installations, the fact remains that solar installers are facing more competition than ever for a small pool of consumers who are eligible to go solar. Meanwhile, our marketing audience is changing, and evolving laws are making dialing and texting consumers increasingly challenging.  

Residential Solar Market Trends 

The solar industry remains highly competitive and seasonal. So even with the passage of the U.S. climate bill representing the most significant climate legislation in U.S. history, we’re still not seeing everyone going out and adopting solar. 

  • Tax Incentives- The long-term extension of the personal income tax credit (ITC) for residential solar raised the ITC to 30% until 2032. This is a nice incentive for homeowners, but even with tremendous confidence and interest in renewables – solar remains a complicated product. And installers still must chase down eligible homeowners.  
  • Lack of awareness- Many consumers still don’t fully understand how it works and has concerns about construction, new technology, financing, and how solar panels will look on their homes. Solar is hard to sell.  
  • Cost of setting up- A Forbes Home survey cited the initial investment and upfront costs as the main deterrent for homeowners when considering switching to solar. The solar market is growing increasingly competitive for businesses, which gives consumers more choices but also introduces more confusion. This means homeowners have more options and often don’t know how to select a solar installer. Not to mention the majority of solar sales comes from door knocking and/or telemarketing – and most customers don’t prefer that customer journey.
  • High competition- The solar market is growing increasingly competitive, which gives consumers more choices but also introduces more confusion. This means homeowners have more options and often don’t know how to select a solar installer. Not to mention, many solar sales come from door-knocking and telemarketing – and most customers don’t prefer that customer journey. 

Alignment with shifting demographics

Another challenge with selling solar comes from the changing demographics of U.S. homeowners. Boomers are no longer the largest segment of homeowners, with millennials now the predominant demographic and Gen Z following behind. When you’re marketing to them, they may not respond to banner ads or pick up cold calls at the same rate as Boomers. So, it’s important to reach your audiences the way they want to be contacted. 

This requires some sophistication and technology and a strategic shift in messaging that considers nuanced and segmented consumer segments. There are also increasingly strict regulations for consumer marketing – including evolving telemarketing laws that can be costly for anyone not in compliance. TCPA class action lawsuits are rising against companies for non-compliance and unsolicited robocalls and robo-texts. To stay competitive, you must align your solar business with these trends. 

Technology for improving sales 

What’s tricky to understand is that data doesn’t always perform the same. For example, there’s a hurricane in Florida, and you would think that would be a bad time to sell solar. But people are locked in their houses and take our phone calls. And you can monitor this in real-time on a list conversion report and see how it changes daily based on several factors across the area. 

So don’t be afraid to monitor your lead sources in real time and get granular – especially if you manage multiple territories. We know that performance by state can vary in solar and different demographics make it necessary to filter by zip codes. If you’re trying to balance a schedule in Texas, you may have too many appointments in Houston and not enough appointments in Dallas, so you can turn on a zip filter, turn on all your data, and load balances your solar queue. 

Not all solar leads are created equal 

You need to know your sources, states, and customer profile. And you need to address your marketing to increase sales and enhance the customer journey. This is where it makes sense to partner with reputable lead generation companies to acquire qualified solar leads in your targeted areas. As you do your due diligence and research, you may find that some companies may cost a little bit more, but their closing set rate is so much higher that it makes sense to partner with them. You’ll also need to ask how they generate leads and what affiliates push traffic to their landing pages. And as always, you will have to look at how companies approach compliance, too, and how they provide documentation of consent to market to consumers. 

Heather Griffin, SVP at PX, had an interesting discussion with Convoso’s CEO and co-founder, Nima Hakimi, on ways to capitalize on solar leads in this increasingly competitive industry. In case you missed anything, here is the webinar recording.  

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