EnergySage has been awarded $500,000 from the Department of Energy’s (DOE) SunShot initiative to develop an interesting new venture.
The company will create and implement a a web-based solar PV comparison-shopping platform that allows commercial and residential property owners to solicit multiple price quotes from an extensive list of pre-screened, high-quality solar PV installers.
Quotes are displayed in a standardized format that allows easy comparisons, helping people get the best price for solar PV systems from the best installers, while saving significant time and effort through automation.
It will be fully integrated into EnergySage.com’s existing suite of free educational and analytical tools and its interactive peer-to-peer community, simplifying and expediting the clean energy system purchase process. The resulting EnergySage platform will be a one-stop-shop for consumers to gain the knowledge and confidence they need to execute a purchase.
On the installer side, the platform has the potential to reduce customer acquisition costs from 25% of the price of an installed solar PV system today to half that. That would also lower the price customers pay by about 10%.
By expanding the market and improving the efficiency of the sales process, the platform can increase solar PV installers’ revenues and profitability by delivering qualified, ready-to-buy leads while dramatically reducing sales costs and cycle times. These benefits also extend to other supply chain participants such as manufacturers, distributors, and financing companies.
It’s a win-win for both solar installers and potential customers and will be ready for pilot testing later this year.
“By making it easier for people to navigate the solar PV system purchase process, we are lowering customer acquisition costs, lowering prices, helping installers improve profitability, and ultimately, expanding the market exponentially, ” says Vikram Aggarwal, CEO.
“We believe that evaluating and investing in a solar PV system should be as easy as buying any other home appliance,” continues Aggarwal. “We expect the EnergySage platform will do for the solar PV market what LendingTree has done for the mortgage market.”
EnergySage is one of 10 companies awarded incubator investments under SunShot, which aims to make solar competitive with conventional energy prices by the end of this decade. SunShot focuses on the soft costs associated with solar installations, such as permits and software.