For each and every one of your customers, Solar is a long term investment.
For that reason they are looking for an installer that they can rely on.
Solar Thermal or Solar PV is a major investment for each of your customers, and it has to be customized for every application and budget.
Whether you sell small pre-packaged systems or custom-made complex all-in-one solutions, you need to discuss the benefits of your product in detail with the customer.
Knowing What to Communicate
Make sure to communicate to your customer your superior technical and overall knowledge of the rebate process, building codes, homeowner’s association restrictions and financing options. Solar is a long term investment and your customers are expecting a quality system that produces for at least 25 years; that's why they want to establish a solid relationship with you –the installer.
But unless you are an order taker, it is the way that you handle a prospective client that determines if you get the order.
- Just give him the facts. He doesn’t want a long, drawn out spiel. After you get to know him a little, get to the point.
- Tell him the truth, and don’t use the word HONESTLY. It makes him nervous. If you say something they doubt or know not to be true, you are OUT.
- Give him a good reason why Solar is perfect for him. If he needs what you are selling, he needs to understand how he will benefit from buying it. Besides environmental stewardship as a reason of going Solar, help him to figure the important financial value of Solar energy system he is buying. Be good at it.
- Show him a testimonial from a loyal customer. Show him some proof. He is more likely to buy if you can prove what you say. Show him a list of as many of your installations as possible and let him look at them in order to reinforce his confidence and confirm his decision.
- Explain and demonstrate your commitement to long-term services for the customer. He has bought a lot of empty promises in the past, so ensure his confidence in your service.
- Tell him and show him that the price is FAIR. He wants reassurance that he is paying a fair price for your product. Make him feel like he is getting a deal. Anyone can sell solar panels. The importance in choosing a company that will stand by its product and services is ensuring the realization of the fruits of his investment. Make him understand that the best warranty and service may cost more up front, but they will save him money in the long run.
- Show him the best way to pay. If he can’t afford to pay the initial estimate, but he still wants to do business with you, offer him alternatives. Instead of a large down payment, offer him a financing charge. Offering finance charges instead of a down payment indicates to your prospective customer that your company has the stability and reliability required for certainty in their long-term investment.
- Give him a choice and let him decide, but make a consultive recommendation. If he is considering 3 different proposals, remind him that only focusing on how much Solar he will get for his dollar can be a mistake. Tell him what you would do if it was your money.
- Don’t argue with him. Even if he is wrong, he doesn’t want some smart guy installer telling him he is. You may win the argument, but you will lose the sale.
- Don’t tell him negative things. He wants everything to be great. Tell him an example: a savings account might pay 1% interest, and the long-term stock market investment brings about 8%. The results for solar can be substantially better than that! Make it the case!
- Don’t tell him what he has bought or did is wrong. He wants to feel smart and good about what he did. Be tactful if he goofed and tell him about other people have goofed too.
- Listen to him when he talks. He is trying to tell you what he wants to buy, so don’t be too busy to sell him what you have got. Shut up and listen.
- Make him feel special. He is going to spend his money; he wants to feel good about it. Now it all depends on your words and actions. Ask him if he knows that according to real estate people a home’s value will increase $20,000 for every $1,000 reduction in annual operating costs from energy efficiency.
- Be sincere when you talk to him. He can smell if you are being phony just to get his money.
- Help him to buy – don’t be pushy. Your customer has the crucial weapon against your pushing – he can just say NO.
- Deliver him what you promised him- when you say you will. He may challenge you by asking to start installing panels the following week, be careful; a short jobs backlog may indicate that your company is struggling to get work. If he gives you his business and you disappoint him, it’s unlikely he will do business with you again.
- Make him laugh. Put him in good mood and he is more likely to sign your contract.