Sense Home Energy Monitoring is gaining traction among solar contractors. More than 150 new solar installers have joined Sense’s Pro partner program over the past year, such as Solgen Power, Pure Energy, Zenernet Solar and Pro Bid Solar, to name a few.
One reason is the pandemic, which has caused many solar installers to shift their sales approach. The Sense Home Energy Monitor can strengthen an online pitch by highlighting the engaging customer experience that can be expected after solar and Sense are installed.
“Sense has taken our amazing customer experience to a new level. Our customers are so pleased with how easy the Sense app is to use and understand,” said Preston House, vice president at Solgen Power. “Each customer is using less energy and better understanding how their solar system is working and benefiting them.”
Customers report greater satisfaction with better visibility into their whole home energy, not just solar production.
Referrals from existing customers continue to be an industry focus in order to win new business at a lower cost of customer acquisition. The best time to ask for referrals is after the first utility bill arrives and shows solar savings, but many providers report that customers can be disappointed if their electricity usage exceeds solar production.
The Sense app helps here by setting realistic expectations for homeowners and provides real-time insights into their energy usage and solar production to ensure they realize the savings benefit of going solar.
Example: Sense customer David Henderson was initially frustrated after he installed solar at his California home. “The first couple of bills showed almost zero change in my bill,” says Henderson. He used Sense to audit his home and discovered several energy hogs, including a chandelier with incandescent lighting and a pool pump. Says Henderson, “It was so easy: the data that it gives, instant information.”
“Building a strong foundation for customer satisfaction can lead to higher referrals and lower customer acquisition costs, driving business success even in challenging times,” says Gabe Abbott, Sense’s vice president of strategic partnerships.
Expanded Pro benefits
With feedback from Sense’s partners, the Pro program now includes several new features. Sense partners now have exclusive access to new Sense hardware capabilities that provide additional Internet connectivity options in homes and accommodate installation in a wider variety of electrical panel configurations.
Sense also announced the release of the new Sense Pro mobile app for iOS and Android, which simplifies the installation process for solar installers, electricians, builders, and other Sense partners. With the Sense Pro app, installers are guided step-by-step through the installation process, including verification, troubleshooting, and support in real-time, to ensure the installation is completed in a single home visit and homeowners can start using the Sense app right away.
The Sense Pro App integrates with Fleet Manager, Sense’s online partner dashboard where partners can maintain careful record-keeping of Sense monitor installation details in one place. Fleet Manager tracks each monitor installed by a partner after securing the homeowner’s permission. With Fleet Manager, providers can generate reports that help customers understand their energy use so they can maximize savings from their solar investment.
— Solar Builder magazine