OnDemand WTP Pricing Research

Lessons From a Solar Bidding Platform: Higher Quality Beats Lowest Price | Greentech Media

Some solar installers have voiced concerns about a “race to the bottom” since we started inviting them to sell through our Solar Marketplace in 2013. Their reasoning sounds something like this: If consumers have easy access to multiple competing bids with transparent pricing, installers will be forced to undercut their competitors’ prices in order to win more business. To deliver these low prices, installers will then be forced to offer cheap, low-quality equipment in order to close sales, leading to an unwinnable race to the bottom for the solar industry.

Over the five years we’ve been in business, we have actually found the exact opposite occurring: High-quality equipment sells best on EnergySage, and the majority of consumers do not select the lowest-priced offer available to them. The much-anticipated race never got started. For installers, this should be good news: You don’t have to sacrifice quality for price.

SunPower, LG and Panasonic are the most popular brands on EnergySage
In our latest Solar Marketplace Intel Report, we provide complete visibility — for the first time ever — into exactly what type of equipment wins the most customers on EnergySage. The quotes that are most likely to be selected all include high-quality products from reputable manufacturers.

The chart above shows the top 10 panels, by brand and series, most likely to be selected by a consumer on EnergySage in 2017. We’ve also included quality scores from our panel rating system, an objective classification system for assessing solar panel quality we developed with assistance from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). These quality scores, along with corresponding prices, are made available to all shoppers using our site.

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Lessons From a Solar Bidding Platform: Higher Quality Beats Lowest Price | Greentech Media.