No Longer Impossible: 5 Reasons Why Utility Small Business Programs Work

Sep 26, 2014

It used to be that small business customers were the impossible business segment. Mid-sized and large businesses were happy to participate in traditional prescriptive and custom programs, but small business owners just didn’t have the time, money, or knowledge to do so. Small business programs could reach them, but whether it was the total savings or cost-effectiveness, many program administrators didn’t include them in their portfolio. Well, times have changed!

Small business programs are now an essential component of energy efficiency portfolios. They are being launched along with new prescriptive programs, and incorporated into mature portfolios that need new sources of energy savings.

Still feeling unsure? Here are five reasons why you should consider incorporating a small business program in your portfolio:

  1. You have a lot of small business customers!  There are 23 million small business in the U.S., and if you’re like other utilities, about 90% of your commercial and industrial (C&I) customers are small businesses.
  2. Small business programs can help you hit your savings goal.  With a comprehensive program focused on deeper savings, your small business program can achieve significant savings. For example, one of our Midwest small business programs achieved 28 GWh savings in two months.
  3. Small business programs are cost-effective.  There are several proven strategies to help keep your Small Business program cost-effective, including software that uploads customer information from inside their facility and a trade ally-driven model that leverages the efforts of local trade allies. With the right model, you can reduce your program administration cost by more than 50%.
  4. Small business programs increase customer satisfaction.  A comprehensive small business program increases customer satisfaction by providing customers with turnkey project support. Your program can provide a free energy assessment, print and deliver a customized report, offer pre-negotiated measure costs, record and upload the customer’s chosen measures and electronic signature, directly install free measures, and schedule future installation dates – all during the first visit.
  5. Small business programs work.  As the previous four reasons showed, small business programs work, plain and simple. With today’s technology and advanced trade ally management, a small business program can work for you too!