If you own a solar company your work in customer relations does not end once you have installed the solar panels. The reality is that you need to maintain some type of relationship with your past customers because they are a valuable referral source. In fact, past customers may turn out to be your most valuable referral source of all. You need referrals from past customers for your solar company because solar panels are not an impulse purchase, referrals have the biggest impact on high-consideration purchases, and because leads that come from referrals are more likely to be qualified.
Solar panels are not an impulse purchase
In the majority of cases, the people who purchase solar panels put some effort into the decision making process. They are not typically an impulse purchase that people make. Generally, a person looking to purchase solar panels will do research online and ask for the opinions of others who have solar panels before they ever contact a solar company for more information. Eighty-one percent of people considering a big purchase do research online prior to making a decision. The fact that people spend so much time considering a solar panel purchase increases the likelihood that they will encounter someone they know who has purchased solar panels. When you have customers who are willing to refer your solar company then they can point anyone who comes to them for advice toward your company. A past customer who is willing to refer the people they know who are considering a solar panel purchase can result in some very high quality leads.
Referrals have the biggest impact on high-consideration purchases
We established above that solar panels are a purchase people often spend a significant amount of time and effort considering. Because they are a high-consideration purchase, the importance of referrals from past customers is magnified. In general, a recommendation from a friend can drive sales five times more than paid advertising efforts. But, when you look at the impact of a personal recommendation for high-consideration purchases, the research shows that it is significantly greater. This means that referrals from past customers are more important for solar companies than they are for businesses that sell lower-consideration products.
Leads that come from referrals are more likely to be qualified
Solar companies need referrals from past customers because they are one of the best sources for qualified leads. The research consistently shows that people trust the recommendations from their friends and family more than other types of advertising. When you get a referral from a past customer the lead they provide is more likely to be qualified because you have already established a level of trust. The referral’s friend or family member trusts your solar company so you already have some credibility with the referral. This type of referral has the potential to turn into a paying customer much more quickly than a cold lead from another source.
As a business owner, you are well aware of how costly it can be to acquire new customers. You can greatly reduce this cost when you turn your past customers into referral sources. They can provide you with high quality leads for much less than it would cost you to acquire those same leads on your own. You need referrals from past customers so make it a priority to continue working on customer relations even after you have completed a job.