Everyone is aware of how simple we make the solar process for homeowners. We’ve removed the high-pressure sales tactics and we have the solar installers come to the homeowners with bids on their project. But did you know we have made it equally as simple for our qualified solar installers?
With solar modules and other system equipment costs lower than ever, the concentration of the solar industry has been (and will continue to be) lowering soft costs. Customer acquisition and advertising can be expensive campaigns for any home solar installation company, no matter where they operate. Wouldn’t it be better if solar installers didn’t have to do either of those things, and signed agreements automatically sent to them?
Our Relationships With Our Qualified Solar Installers
Our goal at Pick My Solar is to make it ridiculously simple for both homeowners and solar installers alike. Once a prospective customer visits our site, he/she learns the basics of solar and submits their home for solar bids. Pick My Solar takes care of all the design aspects of the project: sizing the system while taking customer preferences into account. Our installer partners then submit bids on the project through out website. We usually get 12-15 bids per project from highly qualified installers.
“The medium and long tail of the industry, they’re great at installation,” said Rex Kehoe, our Director of Partnerships. “They work sales and marketing too, and we don’t expect to replace that entirely, but for some of our best partners, we make up 20% of their projects, and it’s virtually no risk. They just submit their prices, and if chosen by the homeowner, we send them a signed agreement. It’s a means to increase their project volume and add maybe an extra installation crew without a lot of upfront investment for extra advertising or extra salesmen.”
The Future of Pick My Solar’s Installer Partners
Our marketplace has been facilitating project bidding for three years. We began in Los Angeles when our founders, Max Aram and Chris Blevins, aimed to create an “Expedia for solar.” Installers would bid for a customer’s business, and Pick My Solar would serve as an independent, neutral specialist to assist the homeowners through the experience.
Today, we are focusing on 15 hot solar markets in states on both coasts. Although our online marketplace is not in all 50 states just yet, we are working on building out our installer relationships which will allow us to expand throughout all 50 states.
How to Become a Qualified Pick My Solar Installer
Solar installation companies looking into joining our platform first need to apply online and submit basic business information. After this first round of evaluation, we ask for additional details on feedback from past customers, photos of completed installations, insurance, and licenses, etc.
“The largest driving factor is the internal rating that installers have with us,” Kehoe said. “Once we start working with them, we still maintain communication with our customers. We get reviews from them to see if they were happy with the installation of their system. Those ratings are what keeps the installer in high ranking with us and helps get them future deals.”
The initial work from the solar installer to get started is small. By the time installers get notified of a project that is open for bidding, Pick My Solar has already done an in-house design using remote software, sized the system, and informed the customer on what to expect. Installers have all they need to place an accurate bid, all online.
Once the bidding period has expired, Pick My Solar automatically sorts all the quotes on more than 50 different variables (such as type of equipment and quality of warranties) before showing the homeowner the best three options. Throughout the experience, all communication with the customer is done with Pick My Solar specialists. Customers don’t get hassled with 15 solar companies calling them each night trying to get their business, and installers aren’t spending a lot of time answering basic “how does solar work?” type questions.
What Solar Installers Are Saying about Us
Colin Swan, Skytech Solar CEO, said his San Francisco company had used other online solar marketplaces in the past, but Pick My Solar makes acquiring the solar contract much simpler by eliminating the installer’s burden of needing to constantly follow-up with bad deals.
“With [other marketplaces] we have to do the proposals and and call them,” he said, “Is it worth the time we’re spending? Pick My Solar has made it easy for the installer.”
Any and all solar installation companies are permitted to apply to become a Pick My Solar installation partner through our installer application portal — free of charge.
Why Solar Installers Choose Pick My Solar
“We’ve totally eliminated the installer’s need for marketing, sales,” Kehoe said. “It’s much less trouble on their end. They get to concentrate on what they’re the pros at—the actual installation. We focus on making the marketing and the sales process as efficiency as possible, and provide a better experience to the homeowner.” Ready to become an installer? You can begin your application here.