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Customer research is a vital part of what Delta-EE does, looking in-depth at the needs and wants of energy customers as they become an increasingly important part of the energy transition. With the recent publication of Delta-EE’s report The New Energy Consumer: Who are they and what do they want?, host Jon Slowe was joined on a recent episode of Talking New Energy – the podcast from Delta-EE – by Principal Analyst David Trevithick and Analyst Lodovico Di Deodato. They discuss how companies are using customer insight to develop their business models and propositions for the future.
David Trevithick says, “consumers are a part of the decarbonisation equation, so we need to bring the customer on the energy transition with us. And to do that as industry, we need to really and deeply understand them: what makes them tick, how they live their lives, their energy-related needs, motivations and preferences. And remember, of course, this varies between us all.
2020 has been a year like no other. It’s hard to remember what the news covered before the Covid-19 crisis. Businesses have been challenged, with job losses and restructuring commonplace, and lockdowns across the world have put countless things on hold.
That said, the energy transition has continued to gather pace. New entrants continue to enter the market, despite companies like Tonik Energy and Yorkshire Energy going under, and companies such as Ekwateur and So Energy see the challenges the year has presented as just that: a challenge.
We’ve done it... We’ve reached the end of 2020. As we all breathe a collective sigh of relief and look forward to the year ahead, it’s time to take a glass half full approach and celebrate the success we’ve seen in the new energy transition over the past year.
I was recently joined by my colleagues Charmaine Coutinho, Head of Consulting, and Lindsay Sugden, Head of Heat, to do just that.
Here at Delta-EE, we have been talking about auto-switching as an important, emerging trend for a very long time. As long ago as May 2017, my colleague Jenny Carson posed the question, “Is the energy industry underestimating its potential to mix things up?”, noting in passing the added appeal of completely free variants of the concept, based on Delta-EE’s own customer research.
The lingering doubt, as with any innovation, was whether it would all just prove to be a passing fad. By the time we revisited the topic in late 2018, we had, however, identified no fewer than 20 auto-switchers across the globe, which suggested, if nothing else, that a lot of entrepreneurs thought it was just as promising an idea as we did. But the uncertainty remained, with few of the major price comparison sites climbing on board, and some of the first auto-switch companies, such as Voltz (UK) and Wechselfuchs (DE), disappearing almost as quickly as they had first appeared.
With rising customer expectations, stronger competition in energy retail markets and a shift from commodity to energy services, residential customer engagement becomes an important component of success for energy suppliers. They are looking to energy insights services as a critical tool for customer engagement and to unlock opportunity for new energy services. Delta-EE’s energy insights database helps energy companies better understand the evolving landscape of retail market competitiveness, smart meter rollout, residential customer numbers and churn and energy insight app usage across European countries and retailers.
All the data used in this article come from the energy insights customer engagement database.
Smart meters and connected devices are throwing up a huge amount of data and energy retailers are working hard to look at how they can use this information to offer insights to customers. So where is the value in this new opportunity for energy retailers and customers alike?
David Trevithick, Energy Insights + research manager at Delta-EE, explains energy insights are now a mainstream offering and energy retailers must think about offering advanced energy insight solutions, with the customer in mind.
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