If you are selling any non-commodity items, you most likely have a sales funnel. For any complex product or service, every buyer goes through different stages before making the final purchase.
A typical sales funnel has four stages: Awareness >> Interest >> Consideration >> Sale
Sales process for a solar installation business is also similarly complex where any buyer gores through different stages, having different levels of interest in the offered solution.
At each of these stages, buyer’s knowledge level is also different. At ‘awareness’ he has just discovered the most basic details of your solar PV offering.
Then over time he learns the value of solar energy, goes to your website and asks for pricing – going to the next ‘interested’ stage in the funnel.
When you provide a proposal to the buyer, he ‘considers’ it before the ‘actual sale’ can happen.
At all of thee stages, the buyer is looking for different information about your offering.
You need to nurture each lead in a different way, depending on which stage they are at. It is therefore necessary to track your sales process using a solar sales funnel. This sales funnel should clearly classify your leads into different stages in the solar sales process.
Consider this example of a solar sales funnel –
Awareness – all fresh leads coming from website, Facebook / Google ads, referrals, email marketing etc.
Provide them standard marketing material related to benefits of solar PV, information on net metering, case studies / customer testimonials which talk about savings.
Interest – leads asking about payback period, kW capacity possible for their rooftop area
Schedule a site visit, followed by preliminary engineering, cost estimate and commercial proposal
Consideration – wherever proposal has been sent
Work closely with them to resolve their objections regarding capacity, payment terms, installation schedule, net metering etc. Establish trust and credibility to win over competition.
Sale – customer has given you the order
Now the only thing to do responsibly is to properly hand over the customer account to a project execution team
As you can see all the important actions in this sales process are directly dependent on the different stages in solar sales funnel. That’s why tracking your leads properly in a funnel becomes important.
Important objective for any business is to make sales and grow the top-line. That means pushing more and more leads through the final stage in your solar sales funnel.
This is possible in two ways –
By getting more leads in the top of your funnel. This requires more efforts on the marketing front, possibly even higher marketing spend.
Converting a higher percentage of leads to orders requires better management of your sales process. For example, timely submission of proposal, better relationship management, timely follow ups with the customer.
If you do this properly, you can increase your sales without much increase in the costs. So you can increase your top-line as well as bottom-line with this approach.
Practically, speaking you need to use both the approaches to scale up your solar installation business.
Now lets look at some useful tools to manage and grow the sales funnel for your solar installation business.
Adding more leads to your sales funnel is all about marketing. We have written in great detail about online marketing tools useful for commercial solar and residential solar lead generation.
Here’s a list of all online marketing tools useful for a solar business.
The conversion rate in your solar sales funnel highly depends on how well you manage your sales process.
Some important factors are –
You can use tools like – CRM, sales tracking spreadsheet, site survey form, proposal and document management solution for facilitating the sales process.
But for it to be truly efficient and effective, all of your sales management tools must be connected to each other.
For example – usually sales engineers spend a lot of their time in managing documentation, photos and site survey data gathered from customer.
But this process can be automated by connecting the site survey app to the CRM software. In that case your sales engineers would not spend their time in creating site survey reports. Instead, they can spend more time with the customers, building better trust to close the deal.
The overall productivity of your sales process can be boosted with more such automated workflows for solar sales.
For this kind of connectivity between your sales management tools you can either use a platform like zapier to connect all tools manually OR you can get a readily built, pre-configured solar sales tracking solution from Fuzen.
Fuzen’s solar sales management solution is built within Google Drive by connecting simple Google drive apps like – spreadsheets, forms, folders, Gmail etc. It provides user friendly interfaces as well as seamlessly connected automation workflows.
You can take a trial from this link to manage and improve your solar sales funnel.
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