As a business or retailer, you might find yourself often searching for new and creative methods to keep up with cutting-edge competitors. One way to have a leg up on the competition is to install electric vehicle (EV) charging stations on your business’ property. Not only can it attract new, loyal and typically higher-earning cstomers, it also helps decrease the overall environmental footprint in your community.
Charging stations also keep customers at your location for longer duration; increase their visits; provide a benefit for employees, tenants, or residents; and can generate revenue via advertising and per-charge pricing, according to New York State of Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), a public benefit corporation that works to protect the environment and promote clean energy in New York State. Here are six reasons to install an electric vehicle charging station at your business:
Boosts customer traffic. Walgreens, IKEA, and Kohl’s, according to an article on CNBC, have all installed EV charging stations, and they’re not alone. Smaller businesses, too, have started putting in one or two charging stations, and for EV drivers looking for a specific restaurant or store, they’re more likely to consistently and faithfully choose the location where they can plug in and charge up during their visits. As electric vehicles gain increased popularity, this trend will inevitably continue.
Encourages green living. Of course, just because you choose to install an EV charging station at your property doesn’t mean you’re ridding the world of fossil fuels and saving the environment in one fell swoop—but it gets you a few steps closer to these lofty goals. NYSERDA’s Website states that with this increased sense of environmental stewardship, you could attract both EV and non-EV residents, employees, and customers for a reason as simple as environmental consideration.
Puts your business on the map (literally). Perhaps your business is new or off the beaten path. With the installation of a charging station, you can add your business to special maps that electric car drivers utilize to plug in and charge. It’s an easy, inexpensive and simple form of advertising to this specific, typically higher-earning and extremely loyal customer base. One such map is found on the EV Connect smartphone app, and if a driver who needs to juice up is nearby your business, they are much more likely to make a pit stop at your property (and spend enough time there to fill up their car’s battery).
You might just get a rebate. In Portsmouth, New Hampshire, Redhook Brewery recently installed an EV charging station and received a $3,000 rebate from the largest utility in the state, PSNH. With that kind of incentive, plus the promise of steadfast, EV-driving customers, it would be short-sighted to not consider installing charging stations at your business’ location. On the Federal level, there’s a program that lets business owners deduct 30 percent of the cost of charging station installation from their taxes, plus they can get up to $1,000 of the total amount spent on the install.
Opens up the conversation. Electric vehicles are still relatively new in the automobile market, and you might be surprised at how much of the population has no clue about all their benefits. A charging station can become the catalyst that brings more awareness to those customers—and perhaps even convert them into future EV drivers who utilize the station(s) at your business.
Builds a different kind of community. Retailers have a major opportunity when installing EV charging stations. They can create customer benefits or discounts for EV drivers, and they can “connect” with drivers through technology, like the EV Connect mobile app. A business owner can simply ask drivers to submit an easy connection request within the app, which gives organizations new insight into their customers. From there, the company can utilize this new information to provide promotions and opportunities for their EV customer-base.