The HVAC & Solar BusinessAug 14, 2023
Warning. This article may be controversial at first glance to some readers, but possibly alter the future business plans of others. This page will share some of our recent research into homeowner demand, what they are looking for and how you can pivot and build your all-year-round business of the future.
Marketing & Sales Research
This July, The Boiler Business delivered a two-day Marketing & Sales Weekender event in Sheffield. It's common for us to invest many hours of research before each gig, and for this event, we researched homeowners' demand and how they find home heating services. Using, Chat-GPT to speed up researching the most populated 200 towns & cities across the UK, we then created reports focusing on Boiler Servicing, Boiler Installation & Heat Pumps. We then extended this research to identify opportunities for other services such as general plumbing, air conditioning, solar panels and electric vehicle charging. Here's what we found.
Heat Pump search is building, but...
It is common knowledge that the uptake of Heat Pumps is way off the government's target of 600,000 heat pumps per year to reach net zero by 2050. Walking around recent Industry shows, you may have noticed more heat pumps than boilers on the manufacturer's displays. So, we can all agree the politicians want more heat pumps, the manufacturers want to sell more heat pumps, and there are vast numbers of engineers already installing them or upskilling to be ready for the forthcoming heating revolution.
But do homeowners want it? Are they researching the new technology, and are they looking for local companies to install a heat pump for their property? Looking at the Heat Pump Installation data above (taken from SEO software), it is clear that demand and search for heat pumps has been growing year on year since 2018, but it is still relatively early days when looking at the search volumes for other services.
I spoke to a well-known heat pump installation company last week and listened to the director explain that the demand for heat pumps in their area of the UK is huge, and the only thing holding them back is finding good technicians to join the team. This company is currently overrun with heat pump installation work, so clearly, homeowners in this region want to do their bit for the planet and warm their homes with a heat pump. But, he also agrees with what other heat pump installation companies are discussing that people wanting heat pumps are also enquiring about solar installations to complete a whole house energy solution.
So, if Heat Pump installers are reporting that their customers are also interested in installing Solar PV, are dedicated Solar companies now also getting requests for Heat Pumps? And are these companies in a perfect position to upsell a heat pump installation or partner with another company to provide a heating solution?
Google Search for Solar PV
Looking at the data, the consumer demand for Solar Installers is way ahead of the current search for Heat Pumps Installers. It shows the opportunity for savvy, forward-thinking businesses to offer a complete whole-house energy solution. Remember, every house with a roof probably has a heating system, and for every home with Solar, the customer is likely to be interested in further energy savings.
Going HVAC with Air conditioning
Another key discussion during the Marketing & Sales Weekender was around heating engineers, upskilling and adding Air Conditioning to their services to improve the summer workload. The research confirmed in many cases that people are searching for "Air Conditioning LocalTown" more and more each year.
Some people will point at changes in the weather, such as the recent 40c days in the summer, but this is still the UK, and it is just as likely to be raining for 40 days and 40 nights throughout the summer. What cannot be denied is how Covid19 has changed the working environment and how people now want hybrid jobs, spending some time in the office and the rest working at home from their kitchen table, spare room or garden office.
Opportunities are everywhere. Which ones will you follow?
The Boiler Business is helping the plumbing and heating industry. Our supporting resources, training and learning are now available at www.theboilerbusiness.co.uk. You can engage with 1500 other engineers on The Boiler Business Facebook group. We’d love to connect! www.facebook.com/groups/theboilerbusiness