There is no denying that electric vehicles (EV) are the future of the automotive industry. In 2021 Australia recorded 20,665 EV sales, a significant increase from the 6,900 sold in 2020, which means electric cars now make up 1.95% of the new car market. To give a better indication of what this means in real terms, instead of saying 1 in 200 vehicles sold in Australia is purely electric, we can now report 1 in every 60 vehicles bought in Australia is a pure EV.
Electric vehicle (EV) technology is progressing rapidly and many governments globally (including Australia) are supporting the increased penetration of electric vehicles by way of expansion of charging infrastructure. In fact, certain state governments are now incentivising the purchase of electric vehicles, with more states likely to follow suit.
How retailers can prepare for the rise of electric vehicles
The rise of electric vehicle (EV) ownership is set to spark new expectations from customers when it comes to refueling. In saying this though, this offers great opportunities for retailers and businesses. Charging an electric vehicle can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 12 hours to charge. Since EV’s are here to stay and gaining popularity by the day, now is a great time for retailers and businesses to get on board and leverage the trend.
There is significant opportunity for retailers and businesses;
Offer EV charging facilities on your premises
When it comes to where customers like to see charging points, it is no surprise that their daily routine played a significant part in the preferences, namely;
- Place of work
- Shopping/retail venues
- Hospitality venues
- Existing fuel stations
Whether you are trying to attract long-distance travelers or locals, adding EV chargers to your property can encourage people to make your shopping center or business a stop on their route.
Adding the infrastructure to charge EV’s at these venues can be a significant revenue driver for these businesses/retailers. Refueling an electric vehicle isn’t like refueling a traditional vehicle (it can take much longer). What used to be a ‘grab and go’ venue on the daily route can now be a longer outing.
For property managers, the addition of EV chargers for business will drive traffic to your tenants’ places of business, which will keep them happy, and more likely to renew their leases!
For business owners, offering complementary EV chargers can drive revenue through increased sales. There is an opportunity for retailers to offer customers new experiences while they wait. Or simply providing convenience and comfort leading customers to stay longer (and do more on your premises) and ultimately spend more money at the respective venues.
Benefits of workplace electric vehicle charging
There are also significant benefits to installing an EV charger as a business owner/employer.
- Keeping employees happy. Employees who feel valued and whose needs are met, are more engaged and productive. Providing essential electric charging stations for employees offers convenience and consideration, resulting in happier, more productive employees.
- Social responsibility is key for businesses today and enabling greener transport is a crucial part of that. EV charging at the workplace sends a clear message about where the business stands with respect to reducing emissions and the environmental impact of its operations and staff.
- Efficiency and cost benefits. Electric charging points at work may make life easier for employees, reducing time spent seeking out alternatives. For companies where vehicle fleets are part of the business there are opportunities to save on fuel and maintenance costs.
- Convenience. EV charging stations on the premises will be attractive to clients, potential employees as well as business partners.
Looking at the increased availability and popularity of electric vehicles, the increased consumer interest as well as government grants means that electric vehicle sales will continue to rise and ultimately dominate the industry over the coming decades.
As we experience the surge in the EV market, retailers and businesses have the opportunity to lead the charge (pun intended).