A Client Approached Me Wanting To Create a Solar Panel Cleaning Company — The Market Study Shocked Me.
Solar Panel Cleaning Business?—Growing industry, Good for the environment, Constant need, and Low competition, what else does any entrepreneur need?
Humans in the year 2842: “We have no other option. We have to time travel and warn them.”
2482-Human: “Are you aware that you are destroying this planet? We can’t really do anything about it anymore. You have to act.”
2022-Human: “Yes. Yes. We are aware. We are starting to focus more on solar and wind energy. There’s a company called Tesla you’d be proud of.”
2482-Human: “We know Tesla. Its CEO is XXEREA Musk. The great great grandson of the former US President Elon Musk.”
2022-Human: “Come check out some of those solar panels. Impressive, huh?”
2482-Human: “They’re dusty and dirty. You DO know that this affects their performance, right?”
2022-Human: “Yes, we called the company that installed the panels. They will be here in a month to clean it.”
2482-Human: “Great, wait a month and another till the planet collapses.”
2022-Human: “Thanks, will do! Say hi to my great great grandson!”
A client approached me a while back with wanting to create a solar panel cleaning business. It’s quite a simple concept. Initially, I did not have any opinion before researching a few questions.
How vital is it to clean the panels? Will the cost of cleaning be worth the ROI? (I know that panels do not generate that much power. Hence, an additional cost incurred might not be quite beneficial.)
Can the owner just clean them themselves?
What sort of dirt is a problem? What about rain?
I put those three questions along with ten more to start working on market research to determine the need for such a product.
I won’t be babbling about the outcome of my 20 paged market research. But boy, was I surprised.
Niching it down.
If you have two solar panels on the roof of your house, hiring someone to clean them up might not be that helpful.
If you have twenty solar panels on your farm and it’s usually rainy, you might not find much use in cleaning them. Nature is doing that (more or less.)
However, if you are in the desert, where there is the most sun, and your 500 panels get dust and sand, then cleaning could have a good ROI.
Hence, this is the exact target segment that could benefit from such a service.
Solar panel cleaning business—Not too many are out there.
Reviewing some competitors, a few are actually aware of the opportunity. They offer cleaning services on a weekly and monthly basis with a subscription-based payment system.
They only need to send the owner a single paged document of how cleaning would reflect on their energy savings. Then, if the maths is in place, they’ve signed a client for years, possibly life.
The market growth & need exist and will for the foreseeable future.
Recently, oil prices have been expected to surge after a piece of news about OPEC+ cutting supplies.
The war in Ukraine had a strong effect in that area as well. Global warming is not cooling down. The reasonable conclusion is that demand for green energy sources will continue rising due to regulation or increased prices.
In both cases, energy could become the token of the future. Hence, people working in the energy sector will be, and already are, indispensable.
What could you do about it?
Give it a focus.
If you are a writer, write about it.
If you are a marketing freelancer, take on an energy client, they might become a unicorn anytime.
If you are thinking of studying, put energy on the table.
I’ve known many people who chose petroleum engineering as a path in life only to regret it today and shift their industry. Instead, one needs to think thoroughly about the industry they’re involved in and expand their knowledge in it.
If you don’t want to start a solar panel cleaning business, you could also invest in it.
Imagine investing in Microsoft when Bill Gates was trying to explain to the world that the internet is the next big thing.
Well, The next big needed thing is energy. That’s inevitable. Hence, investing in this sector could fund your retirement or even take you to a new level.
I witnessed it when I found a green tick in my stock investments during the recession. Everything was expected to be a sea of red, and it was, except for a single energy company giving me a pretty good return.
Almost all analysts are forecasting exponential growth.
Deloitte — It is expected that the Dutch installed solar capacity will reach levels around 90 GW by 2050.
McKinsey — Unprecedented capital reallocation to renewable-power generation (for example, solar and wind farms) would create large value pools in low-emissions stock (between $1 and $1.5 trillion by 2030)
Reuters — Solar power has outpaced wind power over the last five years in terms of global capacity additions, notching up a more than 200% increase in worldwide generation from 2016 to 2021, compared to a 93.5% rise in wind generation during the same slot.
Finally, while this client saw an opportunity in a vital technology, you could find another. However, becoming a product of the future is what would take you from zero to hero.
I’m Al, a business consultant in Zurich, Switzerland. I believe in the power of delivering value to you, the reader. For value-adding content, follow me on various social media platforms.
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