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  • Sarah Lozanova

Selling Solar Panels: Telemarketing Closing Techniques For Solar Installers



The solar industry is booming, and more home and business owners are installing solar panels on their properties than ever before. Hopefully, your company is generating many solar leads, which will reduce the need for cold-calling. Despite the significant cost savings and environmental benefits, some deals are hard to close. Often, it takes a bit of skill by salespeople to get potential customers to sign on the dotted line. Let’s examine some of the effective sales techniques for solar companies.


How To Sell Solar Panels: Top Tips


Know What You’re Selling

If you’re new to the renewable energy industry, you’ll soon discover there’s a lot to learn. The more you and your sales team understand solar power, the easier it will be to close projects with confidence. If prospects hear doubt in your voice, they may not consider your information trustworthy. A critical aspect of selling solar energy systems is educating prospects, so providing accurate information is essential.


There are many different aspects that are important to understand, such as solar equipment options, product warranties, shading issues, and net metering. It is especially critical to know how the federal tax credit works to accurately explain it to your leads and customers. This is a significant benefit of going solar, and it dramatically reduces the total system cost for most home and business owners. Likewise, if you are selling commercial projects, it is vital to be familiar with the tax write-offs and bonus depreciation.


Thankfully, there are many ways to increase your knowledge, including visiting solar installations in progress, viewing solar system monitoring data, reading articles, and speaking with system owners. Also, explore how your competitors are approaching solar energy to learn helpful solar sales tips.

Consider Your Script

Creating solid relationships with your leads is critical to developing loyal, satisfied customers. Most prospects will get confused or overwhelmed if your sales pitch provides too much information, so keep your script simple and provide more detailed information if they ask for it. In particular, technical information can cause people to tune out or stop listening to you.


Focus on key points and vital information. Remember, your job is to pique their interest, so they want to learn more. Often, asking questions is a way to engage their interest. You can ask if they are familiar with the federal tax credits or that they can receive credits on their energy bills for surplus electricity they feed to the power grid (if there are net metering programs in their area).


Focus On The Value

The majority of households and businesses that go solar do it for the value and opportunity it provides and not to have rectangular boxes on their roof. Likewise, many people are not interested in super technical information about how electrons help produce a current or who invented the first solar panel. Highlight how installing solar panels will dramatically lower their electricity bill, hedge against future rate hikes, and boost property values. Unlike renovating the bathroom or adding a deck, installing solar panels is one of the few home improvement projects that will actually pay for itself in the savings.


Differentiate Yourself

Competing on price is not necessarily the best way to close deals. Studies show that solar shoppers are often willing to pay more for higher quality solar components. Differentiate yourself by earning trust with your prospects.


Highlight if your solar business uses NABCEP-certified solar installers, licensed electricians, and has a sound safety record. If you offer long labor and service warranties, let your leads know. Likewise, let yourself stand out from other salespeople by demonstrating excellent follow-through. If you say you’ll do something, ensure it gets done. Also, check in with your customers during the installation process to keep the communication channels open.


Remember that most customers don’t want the cheapest option but rather the best value. How does your company shine?


Establish A Sense Of Urgency

Many home and business owners are interested in going solar but need a bit of motivation to act. In some cases, they may think it is better to wait while solar technology matures or possibly the price of components falls.


In the past, some solar installers used the fact that the federal tax credit was tapering down to add urgency. Creating limited-time discounts, special offers, or rebates is an excellent way to turn leads into sales. In the spring, you can urge customers to take advantage of all the summer sunshine to cut high air-conditioning bills. If your installation calendar is not packed in the fall and winter, you can highlight short lead times.


Listen To The Customer

Keep in mind that selling also involves understanding your clients and meeting their needs and desires. Listening is a critical component of the sales process and makes the customer feel valued. Discover your client’s pain points, objectives, desired timeline, available budget, and motivations to serve them better.


Then, use that information to shape your solar proposals. This understanding will help you close more deals and increases your chances of getting high-quality referrals or positive online reviews on social media from your customers.


Involve Them In The Design Process

Many solar customers will have preferences on the design of their solar PV system. They may want the solar modules to be symmetrical or to locate them on the garage instead of the house roof. This involvement helps boost customer service and streamlines efficiencies.


Whenever possible, involve your customers in the design process because it helps make your customers more invested in the project and avoids issues when installation day rolls around. If your customers are unaware of the design, it can result in a change order or an installation delay due to last-minute alterations. Many solar design softwares provide an image of what the solar panel installation will look like, and sending that to the prospect can help them visualize the project in advance.



Consider The Solar Resource

Not all homes and businesses are well-suited for solar energy. Some properties are heavily shaded, while others may have significant design constraints due to homeowners associations or historical designations. If a property has really poor solar potential, it is crucial to be honest about this with the prospect right away. Likewise, some properties will need the roof replaced before installing solar panels. Providing honest and accurate feedback is critical for earning a positive reputation in your community and using your time effectively.


Take Advantage Of Referrals

For solar companies, referrals are some of the best prospects. Often, they are more familiar with solar energy and already have some trust in your services. You will typically need to do less work educating your prospects to close these deals. Whenever possible, tap into this valuable source of leads, as they often have higher closing rates.


One excellent way to boost lead generation is to follow up with customers. You can offer a financial incentive for referrals or remind them to take advantage of the federal tax credit when filing their taxes.


Conclusion

Although solar panel prices have fallen dramatically and the technology has advanced, there is still relatively low market penetration in many areas. Numerous home and business owners are interested in going solar and are eager to cut their energy bills.


Ultimately, the sales process relies on solid proposals and intelligent designs. GreenLancer’s network of certified and vetted vendors enable your solar installation business to get permit ready drawings, solar proposals and feasibility studies, professional engineering reviews, interconnection applications, and more through a simple to use marketplace. Communication is streamlined, projects are easily managed, and deliverables are standardized to reduce soft costs and help you grow your business.


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