The digitalization of the photovoltaic sector: not just salespeople, but consultants

20/09/2023

Tech

The photovoltaics sector is of focal importance, considering the relevance that the energy issue has gained in recent years within the economic contexts of both businesses and private households.  It is a system that makes use of completely renewable, inexhaustible energy, making it the most suitable source in residential settings.

At the European level, over the past decade, photovoltaics has emerged as the leading renewable energy carrier. An unmistakable sign of the will to move away from polluting energy sources, which have a major impact on the climate change we are witnessing.

According to the latest data, 2021 closed with a record increase in terms of installed system capacity, with capacity reaching +25.9 GW and an overall increase of 34% over the previous year. An achievement that was possible thanks mainly to the policies promoted by the European Union through the Green Deal.

The most virtuous countries in Europe at the moment are Germany – in first place – followed by Spain, the Netherlands, Poland and France. In the past twelve months, however, other major nations have begun to invest in photovoltaic energy development, such as Denmark, Sweden, Belgium and Portugal.

 

The situation of Photovoltaics in Italy

The photovoltaic market trend in Italy is improving, although our nation still lags behind other European countries in renewable energy production. The GW quota set at the EU level was not reached in 2021, but growth in installations occurred in 2022.

In addition to the energy lag, the Italian situation is also linked to the presence of outdated power plants, installed more than 10 years ago, which have progressively lost power and would need restoration and revamping.

Looking at the energy market, one realizes that rising energy prices, together with the need to save money, are the main drivers pushing individuals and businesses alike to adopt renewable energy installations today.

 

Digital tools to support sales

Market research indicates that the use of digital tools dedicated to sales is a strategic element that can improve the productivity of salespeople and drive increased performance. We are talking about software for automating and digitizing business processes. In particular, offer configurators that can be used during negotiations, which optimize the different stages of the sale, from the presentation of price lists and brochures to the generation of the contract. Functions that are performed by CPQ (Configure, Price, Quote) software.

The use of these tools increases the ability of the salesperson to adapt his or her behavior to specific customer situations and needs.

 

The challenges in selling photovoltaic systems

In the case of photovoltics, the challenge awaiting salespeople concerns a smooth management of the flow of information to be conveyed to prospects, eliminating paper materials as much as possible through a process of simplifying and increasing the effectiveness of sales proposals. The ideal solution is that represented by an app that can be used on all digital devices, capable of supporting the activity along the various steps of the sales path, even from offline.

Features that match perfectly with Apparound, the all-in-one software that digitizes sales and enables an omnichannel sales journey. All this is done in an absolutely simple and intuitive way in order to turn salespeople into true consultants.

 

How Apparound can be employed to the Photovoltaics industry

It should first be pointed out that Apparound is distributed as a native app for smartphones, tablets, but is also usable as a web app on all desktop browsers.

Content presentation

A PV salesperson-consultant accessing the Apparound application can always count on a updated feature dedicated to marketing content to be shown and shared with the potential customer. The content is configurable and customizable, with the possibility of defining multiple user profiles and differentiating presentations according to the context.

Moreover, the app is optimized in order to create an emotional, direct and easy-to-follow path. In fact, the customer will be able to view individual product features and each applicable option within a dedicated path.

Offer creation

During the presentation, it is possible to select different products within the price list. The configurator is able to manage saleability following the rules imposed by the company, with no margin for error. To give an example, products that follow the discipline of the “110% superbonus” are incompatible with those pertaining to the Ecobonus.

Not only that. Apparound offers additional features designed to respond to the peculiarities of the PV industry, such as:

  • Customer data collection and preparation of technical details of the installation;
  • Configuration of the system including panels, batteries and add-ons;
  • Automated management of list prices and invoice discounts.

Overall, Apparound offers an especially useful user experience for both sellers and buyers alike.

Contract Generation

Upon reaching the point of contract creation, product data sheets are automatically attached to the products within the shopping cart so that they can be easily found and accessed at any time.

Once the compilation is complete, which can also occur automatically in case of integration with company CRM or ERP software, the seller creates the final contract and shares it with the customer.

Conclusion of the negotiation and signing of the contract, even remotely

Apparound’s advanced features allow the negotiation to be concluded in two different ways. In the case of a negotiation that develops in presence, the client can sign the contract directly on the seller’s tablet. Otherwise, he will receive an e-mail with a link to access the remote signature service.

Through the dedicated portal, the customer will then be able to review the products and their related multimedia content and revise the contract before signing using the OTP system via text message.

 

5 reasons to choose Apparound

Among the various sales software on the market, Apparound offers unique advantages that can be achieved through a single solution.

Specifically:

  • Simple and intuitive configuration based on a customer-centric model;
  • Responsiveness to changes imposed by the target market thanks to constant technical updates;
  • Management of bureaucratic requirements, thanks to the contract generator module capable of managing all the documentation required by the back-office. A feature that saves hours of work previously dedicated to the manual compilation of documents;
  • High level of customization and speed of implementation;
  • Specific experience in the Energy sector (three references Sorgenia, Solarplay) as well as in the Utility sector (references: Axpo, Eni Plenitude, Metamer, Eicom Energia, WTS Gas, Italia Power) guaranteeing the highest level of expertise to meet every single need.

 

Conclusions

The processes of digitization of sales functions, thanks to technologically advanced tools such as Apparound, allow a sharp increase in the win rate within competitive markets like Photovoltaics. Salespeople are being called upon to abandon old, outdated commercial logics and be open to constant and continuous digital-based updating. 

Apparound is a configurable CPQ solution designed to integrate seamlessly with HubSpot CRM. It provides sales teams with key capabilities to optimize and automate the quoting and proposal process.

In the digital era, efficiency has become a key component for the success of any business. Companies often face challenges in managing processes. This is where the strategic partnership between Apparound and Net Project comes in.

We are thrilled to introduce the Apparound Release 2024.1, an evolution of the platform bringing enhancements and features designed to optimize user experience and improve operational efficiency.

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