AEP Ohio is said to be the first utility in the world to deploy the Enervee Checkout application which enables customers shopping on the utility's marketplace to take advantage of instant and dynamic discounts for energy-saving products.
This is in partnership with online retailer lightbulbs.com.
The move allows customers to take advantage of instant discounts while shopping online, thus reducing the up-front cost to purchase the product and speeding up the process of traditional, after-purchase rebates.
According to a release: "AEP Ohio, Checkout enables real-time verification of users, increased flexibility in terms of customer verification method (e.g. by zip-code, API call or flat file), as well as the ability to set – and change – underlying rules for incentive eligibility (e.g. by product, quantity or timing)."
The release further says that: "Checkout also enables AEP Ohio to create and deliver targeted incentives – based either on user responses during the Checkout process (via fully customisable qualifying questions), or via data provided by the utility."
For example, special incentives on the most efficient products could be offered to income-qualified customers, addressing the up-front purchase price barrier.
The AEP Ohio Marketplace launched in 2018, offering the company’s 1.2 million residential customers the most energy efficient products to meet their needs.
The AEP Ohio Marketplace offers features not available through other channels, including an Enervee Score showing how energy efficient a model is compared to other products in the same category. The scoring system is based on a 0-100 scale; estimated energy bill savings over the life of the product, compared to typical, similar products; and product price comparisons pulled from e-commerce sites around the country.
According to the release, this platform allows AEP Ohio to partner with retailers, rather than compete.
Matthias Kurwig, CEO of Enervee says: “...we’re excited to see how energy-smart buying decisions become even simpler and more personalized, and how AEP Ohio continues to demonstrate its commitment to be its customers’ trusted energy advisor.”