As EVs become more prevalent on the road, you may be interested in starting an electric vehicle charging station business on your property. From commercial real estate developers to landlords of apartments or condos to entrepreneurs, many sectors are finding value in EV public charging infrastructure. But it’s important to remember that you have choices when it comes to structuring your business models for profitability and sustainability.

There are a few advantages of installing electric vehicle charging stations at your business, from enhanced profitability to recouping energy costs. The way we see it, there are three main ways to look at it.

“More people will be buying electric vehicles than gas cars by 2030”, Boston Consulting Group reported this year. As electric vehicles grow in popularity, one of the many advantages of installing EV chargers at your business is attracting people to your property. In 2019, 2.1 million electric cars were sold worldwide, a 40% year-over-year increase. As the EV market is expected to accelerate to $2.3 trillion by 2041, now is the time to invest in EV charging stations. You’ll attract positive attention and the growing population of EV drivers to your space, whether you own or manage a shopping mall, hotel, apartment or business complex. 

 

Choosing the right EV charging station

Not all charging solutions are created the same and it’s important to understand what key features to be aware of before making a purchase. Whether you choose AC or DC (fast charging) stations, it will be a reflection of your brand, so it’s a good idea to pick something that’s reliable, accessible, and intelligent. Here are the main requirements for your charging equipment:

  • Reliability - the stations should have a decent life span, and be flexible to the market needs;
  • Safety - the charging equipment should comply with the international quality & safety requirements. A charger also needs to be able to withstand all kinds of weather. It should be able to take a hit and keep on charging safely
  • Software - the stations should be smart, with an online connection, and remote maintenance, management & control options.

The number one reason keeping ICE-car drivers from switching to EV is “range anxiety”. Drivers worry that they won’t be able to find a charging station when they need a charge. Or that the charger they find won’t work for their EV - or work at all.

That’s why reliability is critical. As an EV charging business, it’s important to purchase a charger that you know will work with all kinds of EVs. You can find those chargers in the Shop section of our website.

Also, make sure to examine the charger’s track record: Does it have a reputation for reliable performance - or for breaking down? It’s important to choose a reliable charging station from a reliable company known for prompt, helpful customer service.

 

Station placement and capacity

As more people switch to EVs, places that offer sufficient reliable charging are the places that drivers will make sure to visit every day.

Just as the ICE-car drivers often plan their work commutes to pass by a gas station (for when they need a fill-up), EV drivers seek out the routes and locations in their communities that feature accessible charging stations.

”If you are one of the first in your market to provide enough charging stations for people in your area, you’ll see people start to change their routines just to visit your EV chargers.” says Travis Walker, North American Business Development Manager.

Actually, the decision about where to place EV charging stations on your site comes down to two factors: power and visibility.

Charging stations need to be plugged in. Running conduit across a long distance between a charging station and its power source will add to your costs. So, the closer you can get the charging station to the power source, the better.

Your EV parking spots also need to be high-profile so drivers can see them easily as they pull in. EV drivers need to know as soon as they arrive that they can charge while they park, shop, dine or visit your business.

EV charging stations that are front-and-center at your location also show your customers and guests that you are sustainability-minded and forward-thinking. They may even prompt ICE-car drivers to consider an EV for their next vehicle.

 

A charging software solution

In order to maximize the profit and performance of your charging stations, charging management software is key. The software running on your charging stations should provide you with a centralized view of your entire EV charging ecosystem. With charging management software, you should get full control over customizable station settings, such as pricing, power output, station access, and more.

There are a lot of outstanding charging management software providers, and they all offer something unique. One provider may have more features, while another has a lower fee. Selecting the right charging management software is all about finding the intersection between what you need and what you’re comfortable investing in. With the GO TO-U software, you get the freedom to choose the right software package, and access to data of your EV chargers anywhere and anytime.

A future-proof charging service has to include customer support, as well as help EV drivers to find and use the charging stations. With the TO-U mobile app, EV drivers can easily find stations, book them at the most convenient time, start and stop charging, make payments, and enjoy the bonus program.

 

Design and marketing

The visibility and recognition of the charging station at your location are no less important than its power and other technical features. It is extremely important that the charging space is well designed, properly marked, with 24/7 access, and video surveillance.

Charging stations have long ceased to be just "sockets". It is a powerful tool that can play a key role in your business marketing strategy. Thanks to the properly configured operation and management of the charging station, you can develop your own charging network, and generate a stable flow of customers to your locations.

GO TO-U offers a comprehensive solution for the selection, installation and configuration of chargers, parking spots and stations design, video surveillance installation, customer support, marketing campaign set up based on the needs and capabilities of businesses investing in charging infrastructure. The GO TO-U platform provides a number of solutions and benefits for both electric car drivers and EV charging businesses in any field of activity, especially when it comes to fast chargers. If you are looking for a truly comprehensive, reliable and market-recognized approach to investing in charging stations - contact us!

 

Sources: evbox, virta, treehugger, evconnect

 

Jul 30, 2021
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