Archive for July, 2010

One Roof Energy – Solar Power Direct-to-Consumer

One Roof Energy, a residential solar power provider, has a simple yet comprehensive website. The site is relatively well-designed and makes use of some basic SEO concepts, including the following:

  • <title> tags include targeted keywords and phrases, and vary from page to page.
  • <meta name=description> tags also vary from page to page and include targeted keywords and phases.
  • Copy inside the body of pages also leverage keywords.

That being said, there is still room for improvement, including the following:

  • Additional utilization of internal linking. Right now, the navigation is limited to the primary nav bars and footers. Ideally there would be links inside the body copy as well.
  • Site map. Every site should have a site map, it’s really not that hard to put one together. Ideally, an xml site map is also created and submitted.

Beyond SEO, the site could use a refresher in direct marketing basics. Their ‘Contact Us’ form could be made crisper, and we recommend removing the promotion code, the how did you hear about us, along with the drop-down of buying a new home vs. roof. Those should be collected on a second page rather than at the point of registration. This should improve conversion.

The site is also lacking in interactive elements. There should be a way for potential customers to visualize the savings they will achieve after installation, rather than waiting for a response in email. In addition, this is a company that can truly leverage some social media elements.  Testimonials are not nearly as convincing when they are hard-coded html. Why not let consumers, especially existing customers, post comments on a fan page and make it interactive?

One Roof could even have a twitter feed for fan page update every week or month that has a running tally of energy savings, reduction in carbon footprints, etc. They could have this widget personalized for all their customers as well, to place on their own pages. This could enable some viral components as well.

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Book review: Smart Pricing by Jagmohan Raju and Z. John Zhang

Smart Pricing, by Jagmohan Raju and Z. John Zhang of the Wharton School, have written the most engaging business book I may have ever read. Through ten short chapters they weave together so many different pricing innovations it made me feel guilty about how little I have considered pricing strategy. As they say in their introduction, many of us treat price as a given rather than as an important tool in our marketing strategy. The majority of the examples are business-to-consumer, however some concepts may be relevant for the clean-technology/renewable sectors. The ‘Snob Premium’ is certainly a concept that can be applied, and a twist may be the ‘Green Premium’, in which consumers may prefer to pay more for the environmental benefits even if the benefits actually are less expensive. However, even if there is little that can be applied to your specific business, the innovations described will inspire almost anyone with strategic responsibilities. The writing is tight and so compelling, it is the first business book, since Good to Great, that I could not put down.

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