22 Oct Based on the text attached and new research, using creativity answer the following questions in 2 pages of the word document. Assignment #12? 1. To gain visibility, run a competitive websi
Based on the text attached and new research, using creativity answer the following questions in 2 pages of the word document.
1. To gain visibility, run a competitive website analysis into the performance of your website or proposed website with those of your competitors. Use Alexa or any similar website comparison tool.
2. Brainstorm a list of key words that people could use when searching for your products or services online. Then see how those could be built in and repeated on your website.
3. Decide on your domain name, making sure first that you can use it. Test it out online to make sure it can be found easily, does not conflict with similar names that might ‘steal’ you web traffic and does not pull up your direct competitors.
4. Check out submission services to see if they could be useful.
5. Review social media activity in your market and see which channels – Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn etc are most used by current players.
6. Start using Google Analytics to track and analyse your website traffic.
Describe briefly the main operational aspects that are involved in ensuring that your strategy is successfully implemented. In particular, you should consider:
1. Who will conduct the selling for your business, and have they been professionally trained to sell?
2. What selling methods will they employ?
3. Will you use point-of-sale material – leaflets, brochures, or videos, for example?
4. Who will manage, monitor and control your sales effort and how will they do so?
5. Describe the selling process, leading from an unaware prospect to a converted client, covering identification of decision makers, overcoming objections, gaining agreement etc.
6. What procedures do you have for handling customer complaints?
7. What incentives are there for people to meet sales targets and how will you motivate them to do so?
8. Who will direct, monitor and control your sales efforts and what experience/skills do they have?
9. How long is the process from becoming aware of your product or service to making the buying decision, receiving the product or service and finally paying for it? This will have an important bearing on your cash flow and initial sales forecast.
10. What sales volume and activity targets, such as calls per day, etc, have you set for each salesperson or selling method?
11. What process will you use to ensure you are paid on time?
Our business idea is to start a company that embeds solar cells inside infrastructures to
produce solar energy which is a renewable source of energy. We want to do so to reduce the
wastage of non-renewable resources and protect our planet by fighting climate change.
There is a gap that exists in this market as there are not a lot of companies that provide
affordable ways to generate solar energy. Providing solar energy at reasonable prices and
making it available to all is our idea.
Solar panels are usually put up on the roofs of houses but according to us, any ground
surface might be converted into a strong, dual-purpose electricity-generating surface that
uses solar energy. We want to make these surfaces dual-use and money-making so that we
can get a return on our investment.
We have an innovative product as the solar panels we will produce will be installable on
any surface. If utilized properly our product will be able to power the whole city. For this, our
solar would need to be installed on the sidewalks, public squares, and all other
establishments. This will enable us to meet clean power targets and make the earth a better
Our solar panels could be implemented around the city by partnering with government
agencies so that all people can use solar energy for an affordable price. We could also look to
partner with franchises to install our panels at all their outlets.
We have explored the possibility of buying out a business but our product is very unique
so buying out a company would not be very reasonable for us. We want to build our own
company grounds up which will help us have all the control from the beginning.
Entry barriers are high – As developing solar panels efficiently requires significant R&D
expenditure and substantial investments to remain competitive. So there is little threat from
new competitors (Barrow et al., 2018).
Power of suppliers is high – It is High as there are not many companies in this field. Very
few companies in this sector are actually successful. Due to the lack of alternative sources the
power of suppliers is high.
Power of buyer is low – As lease contracts are lengthy and expensive to end, clients have
a difficult time switching providers. It is quite rare that customers who have purchased solar
panels will sell them and purchase them from a different supplier (Barrow et al., 2018).
The threat of substitutes is medium – This industry is threatened by substitutes to some
extent, mostly due to competition with power plant contractors for alternative energy
sources (e.g., natural gas). However, due to government subsidies for renewable energy,
competition from contractors for fossil fuel power plants has decreased during the last five
years (Barrow et al., 2018).
Rivalry among existing competitors is high – Due to intense pressure to innovate across all
segments of the new sector, competition among existing competitors is high. When we
examine the profitability, we can find proof of this. In reality, most businesses in the solar
industry are losing money.
As our idea is unique, we will be the first ones in the market. This will help us gain first
mover’s advantage. Upon receiving customer feedback, we will be able to respond and make
changes as soon as possible. Being first in this segment we will be able to gain market share
very fast if our product catches on.
Our primary strategic direction would be to make solar energy affordable for the masses
(Barrow et al., 2018). Currently, solar energy harvesting can be very expensive. Very few
people can actually such an amount of money but with our product, we will provide a solution
to this problem. Customer satisfaction will always be our priority. Our product will also aid in
the reduction of global warming which will help us fight climate change.
The strategic option we are going in for is cost leadership (Barrow et al., 2018). This is due
to our capability to reduce costs of production to deliver quality products at low prices. We
have conducted extensive research in this field which has enabled us to reduce our cost of
production significantly. We also plan on purchasing our raw materials in bulk which will help
us the in reduction of costs.
Global warming and climate change have caused extensive damage to our planet. When
non-renewable sources are used, they release harmful particles which pollute the
environment. Solar energy harvesting will enable us to preserve the environment while going
on with our lives as usual. We arrived at this proposition as We wanted to protect the
environment by providing solar panels to the masses at affordable rates.
We believe that the solar panel business will succeed as people want to contribute to
saving the environment as it is a clean, green source of energy. Solar power is a great way to
reduce our carbon footprint. This method of energy harvesting will be inexpensive for people
as they will not have to pay high electricity bills. The solar panels will enable people to use
their unutilized land to generate electricity. The business will succeed once people realize
how valuable solar energy harvesting is over traditional energy generation.
The mission statement for our company would be 'Humanity's betterment through solar
energy.' This would be our mission statement as solar energy is for the future. People cannot
rely on non-renewable sources for too long as climate changes have already started affecting
our lives. People will have to shift to renewable sources of energy as soon as possible to
minimize global warming (Barrow et al., 2018).
The vision statement for our company will be 'We will be a premiere in this industry by
providing affordable solar energy solutions with extraordinary customer service while also
protecting the environment.'
Our value statement will be 'Our company operates by the following guiding principles:
excellence, innovation, customer support, and environmental conservation.'
Our short-term goal is to provide an immediate alternative to non-renewable energy
generation methods. Our goal is to reach as many people as possible and spread our idea.
Another short-term goal is to achieve profitability by the end of the year.
Our long-term goal is to become one of the most recognized companies in the industry.
Another long-term goal is to help people reduce their carbon footprints. Our company will
contribute to a sustainable future.
Goal – Setting up and running the company.
Tasks – getting all the paperwork done for the registration of the company, setting up a
production and assembling facility, getting the raw material quotations from the suppliers
and choosing the one which suits our demands, hiring employees for the purpose of
production, and advertising our product to the customers.
We got the idea of setting up this company when we read a report about how the use
of non-renewable energy was destroying our planet. Non-renewable energy sources release
pollutants into the environment which causes the depletion of nature and wildlife around us.
This made us think about how we could help in this situation. We came up with the idea of
releasing affordable solar panels in the market which would enable the people to make their
contribution to saving the planet. It has been realized that solar panels can be used as a source
of renewable energy in the future.
The name of our company is Solar Earth. We chose this name as our solar panels can
be put anywhere. Earlier solar panels were only put up on the roofs of buildings but our solar
panels are very versatile and can be put anywhere like on rooftops, sidewalks, roads, parking
lots, and more.
We have prior experience in this field as we studied solar power engineering in college.
We have an understanding of electrical systems which assists us in the development of these
products. We have earlier worked for a company that used to produce solar cookers so we
have some prior experience in this field. We have also attended a course where the topic of
discussion was solar power schematic development. We are also familiar with the safety
guidelines that apply to the solar power engineering sector.
We will be starting this venture with a friend of mine who was in the same college as
me. He also studied solar power engineering in college. He has prior experience working in a
UK-based company that produces solar water heating systems.
We plan on hiring a lawyer to help us file all the required documents for setting up the
business. A lawyer can provide us with timely legal guidance on how to handle compliances
required by both the law and different agreements. We will also file for a patent and for that
we will be hiring a patent agent who will help us in this process.
The legal form of our business would be a private company. In the future, we will
decide if we would like to continue as a private company or become a public company.
Our business has not yet started trading but we plan on starting as soon as the
documentation process is completed. We have already started contacting the raw material
providers to start our business We have also started the marketing process for our business.
By conducting research, we got to know that more than 43,000 solar (PV) energy installations
on residential, commercial, and industrial rooftops in Canada currently supply these buildings'
homes and businesses with electricity. This tells us that very few people use solar energy in
Canada. This suggests that a large part of the Canadian market is still untapped.
We plan on starting our business in Vancouver and then spreading it to other parts of
Canada. After Canada, we plan on supplying our products to the neighbouring countries.
Our product can satisfy the needs of various customers. It can help people reduce the
hefty electricity bills that they need to pay every few days. It will also help in satisfying the
need of people that want to be environmentally conscious. It will help them satisfy their need
of protecting the planet by using renewable sources of energy. Customers who are enthused
at the possibility of not needing electricity from another source will also benefit from our
solution. This indicates that they seek to control the production, storage, and use of
Types of customers for our product:
Individual customers – These customers would purchase our solar panels for their homes or
offices to reduce their electricity bills or to play their part in the conservation of our planet.
Business owners – The business owners might be one of our major customer bases as they
may purchase our solar panels for their place of business (shops or factories) to reduce the
electricity bill to lower their cost of production. Using solar panels will also play a part in their
corporate social responsibility initiative.
Our priority will be serving the business owners as their energy consumption is much
higher compared to that of individual households. As the business will start using solar panels
the pollution problem will reduce a lot in a short amount of time. By making serving the
businesses a priority we will get lots of orders in a short time in contrast to serving individual
customers one by one.
The market segments that we have chosen are individual households and businesses.
The feature of our product that will provide the most benefit to the individual households is
the reduction of electricity charges that they have to pay on a regular interval as harvesting
of solar energy is free and the customers only have to pay a small amount for the
management of the solar panels. The feature that will provide benefit to businesses is that
the solar panels do not produce any sort of pollution and this enables the business owners to
fulfill the requirements of corporate social responsibility.
One of the biggest innovators in this field is Elon Musk who is the owner of Tesla Inc.
Over the last few years, Tesla Inc. has worked to expand its presence in the alternative energy
sector. With their design-stage offers, Tesla is advancing the solar power business, but the
market is also occupied by industry veterans who are hoping to profit from its steady
The most important factor in a customer's decision to buy or not to buy our products
is the one-time installation cost. This cost can be a bit high for the customers so they might
not want to pay it. Another factor is their electricity bill. If they are already paying very less
for the electricity they might not switch to our products.
The market that we are aiming at has seen a rapid rise over the past few years. Over
the last five years, there has been an upward trend in the market.
Initially, we are aiming for a 3% market share. As this sector is very young, gaining
market share early will enable us to have significant control over the market.
The biggest market share holder in the Canadian solar energy industry is Canadian
Solar ("Canadian Solar – Global", 2022). This is the main company that we will be competing
Canada Solar is Canada's biggest solar company. It is a public company listed on the
stock market. It has two factories and employs over 9000 employees. Canadian Solar reported
a gross profit of $480 million and a net income of $114 million for the second quarter of 2022,
compared to a gross profit of $234 million and a net income of $11.5 million for the first
quarter. Canadian Solar sells its products both to individual buyers and multinational
Canada solar is one of the most recognized companies in Canada. Given its position as
a global leader in both module production and solar project development, Canadian Solar has
a distinct edge in capturing significant market prospects for energy storage ("Canadian Solar
Inc. [SWOT Analysis] Weighted SWOT Matrix", 2022). This is likely to make the competition
more difficult for us as we are a new company.
Canadian Solar's profitability ratio is below the industry average ("Canadian Solar Inc. [SWOT
Analysis] Weighted SWOT Matrix", 2022). This will enable us to capture the market share
The critical factors for success in this industry will be branding strength to convey the
value of our products to our clients, cost structuring to maintain the cost of production, and
vertical integration to create firm partnerships with others in the value chain.
The unique thing about our product is that it can fit anywhere. By embedding solar
cells throughout that infrastructure, it can function on sidewalks, highways, car parks,
terraces, harbours, and more. Our product has endless possibilities.
We have the following pieces of information:
Customers – More and more customers are looking to purchase solar panels as people are
tired of paying high electricity bills. As climate change is also a pressing issue now more people
are realizing the benefits of solar energy.
Competitors – Competitors are making rapid developments in this field. They are working hard
to make solar panels a mainstream product in Canada.
Market – The market for solar energy harvesting products is expanding at a rapid pace.
Individuals and businesses both are looking to purchase solar panels for their establishments.
We need to find out the approximate percentage of people that would be interested
in purchasing our solar panels. This information is needed to understand how many pieces
we need to produce as over or underproduction can hurt the business.
For the desk research, we plan on checking the customers' reviews online in regard to
solar panels. This will help us understand what customers want in their solar panels. Upon
learning this we can design our products according to their needs.
For the field research, we will be conducting surveys using questionnaires to identify
our potential customers. By doing so we will be able to know how many people would be
interested in buying our product.
The market research will take approximately two months as we plan on conducting
this research in all the Canadian provinces. The marketing research will cost us around
Due to their expertise in this area, we intend to hire a third-party business that
specializes in market research.
All the key marketing research information will be available in ten weeks. The data
collection will take around eight weeks after which it will take two weeks to analyse the
collected data and derive conclusions from it.
The product our company embeds is a renewable source of energy known as solar
cells; it produces solar energy through sunlight. Solar cells are installed on the roofs of houses
but our product is innovative enough that it can be installed on any surface, converting the
surface into an electricity-generating surface that can be used for dual-purpose (Ozoegwu &
Akpan, 2021). Our product is powerful that it can power a whole city if it is utilized
appropriately. Solar cells are not much available in the market, but we assure to provide solar
cells at affordable prices. By installing our product in houses or cities, we can also manage to
protect our planet as the wastage of non-renewable resources will be reduced.
Our products are not for sale yet, but we are planning to get them on the market as
soon as possible. Raw materials needed for starting our business have also been ordered from
the raw material providers. The marketing process of our company has also been started.
Now, the only wait for starting our business is the documentation process. Hiring a lawyer has
also been planned for us, which can help us start our business by filing the required
documents. After counting all the expenses, the amount of money this work is going to cost
is approximately $50,000.
Our company is not currently protected by any legal protection but we are looking
forward to filing a patent and appointing a patent agent who will guide and help us out in this
process. We are highly concerned about our rights so we take multiple safety precautions
which assure that our rights are secure. Software and operating systems play a vital role in a
business, so we kept our eyes on them and made sure that they are up-to-date. All the data
related to our business is stored in a safe place, and cloud storage is also utilized by our
company as a backup plan.
Our product is unique and different from all other solar energy companies in the
market. Solar panels offered by other companies are only installable on roofs, but the product
offered by us can be installed anywhere you want. Whether it is a public square, sidewalk, or
any other place, you can install a solar panel there and change the surface into an electricity-
generating surface (Nolden et al., 2020). Once you have installed our solar panel on the
surface, it does not mean you cannot walk on it. It will be converted into a dual-use surface.
Another thing that differentiates our product from others is its power and price. We provide
solar panels at a reasonable price because we want to make them available for everyone.
We are also planning to provide warranties to our customers, as it is necessary for
gaining their trust. The warranty of our product will be 20 to 25 years, which is enough for
proving our products’ quality. If any damage happens to the solar panel before 25 years, then
we will be responsible and will repair or replace the product. We are also including after-sales
services in our company to make a connection with our customers (Ode & Wadin, 2019). Our
customers will be able to tell us about any complaint they have against our product. Their
complaints will be welcomed and anything necessary for their satisfaction will be done.
There is a possibility that we may expand our company and develop new products or
services for our customers, but for that, first, we will need to improve our productivity,
profitability, and sustainability, and gain customers' trust. We have planned for many other
products to offer related to solar energy but it will take some time. We do not want to just
stop at solar panels; each product offered by us will be amazing and give a vibe of the future.
Solar panels are just a start for us. We will expand our presence in the whole market with our
amazing solar products.
After doing a thorough market research and calculating based on average price of
silicon wafers, which is the main raw material required in manufacturing solar panels; cost of
production may vary between $0.50 to $1.00 per watt to manufacture most common type of
solar panels including cost of labour, cost of machinery and cost of utilities as mentioned on
We are striving to do our best in terms of providing products and services that are
unique and affordable at the same time. We have a proposal of making creative customized
solar panels at affordable prices. An idea inspired by Macintosh, a revolutionary creation of
In general, when we think of a solar panel, we see a flat rectangle object with
black/blue screens on it. We will be selling these types of solar panels for large scale projects
like Malls, Offices, Houses, Parks and Sidewalks. This is where market segmentation plays an
important role. To make sure that our products stand out from those of competitors in the
market we offer customized design to make solar panels more creative and attractive.
For example, if a consumer is looking to buy a solar panel to run garden lights in the back
yard or similar small-scale purpose, we have exclusive design solar panels that look like a small
tree made from silicon or basic clay and pop mixture. It can be placed in the centre of the
backyard or garden as a decoration. Small solar panels will be installed on top of the design.
Costs may vary depending upon the raw materials used in production as it is a customized
Production of solar cells and converting them into solar panels is the core part of our
business. Production cost of solar panels estimated between $0.50 to $1.00 per watt will be
the variable cost as it includes cost of labour, cost of machinery, infrastructure etc. Because
we are also providing customized options based on demand cost analysis will be provided at
the time of sale based on materials used.
Fixed costs will be lease of the infrastructure for the production of Solar cells, Insurance
and interest payments for the loans. Legal fees to get our products registered as patent.
As mentioned on Ontario Energy Board’s website average house in Ontario will consume
about 9000 kWhs of electricity per year. Our average cost of production for solar panel is $0.5
to $1.00, considering profit margin if we charge $2.00 to $3.00 per watt for a 7500-watt solar
connection pricing will be between $15000 to $22500 (plus federal solar tax credit) which is
still a competitive pricing in the solar energy market.
In a lot of instances where we will be providing customized solutions, pricing will be
provided based on the raw materials used in the production. Apart from the product solutions
we will be providing additional services like technical troubleshooting, reaching out to clients
annually to see if there are better solution available for them to save more money. As a
company we are going to focus on affordable pricing and maintaining excellent client
relationship for further expansion of business.
As estimated by solarreviews.com in an article Solar panel price and data 2022 Ontario
average cost as of 12th October 2022 is $2.91 per watt which is in the range of our proposed
We are offering services like installations and variety of options to meet client’s needs.
Solar panel installation for infrastructure is offered by a lot of companies in Canada. We have
an opportunity to develop a huge client reach in the market. SunPower, Momentum solar and
Tesla energy are the top competitors in the market. (ecowatch.com)
Amongst these companies and many other existing solar energy companies in the market the
competition is based on various aspects like pricing, durability, after sale services, warranty
and guarantees etc.
In comparison to these aspects our product is sleek and durable at an affordable price. We
have an opportunity to compete if we provide exceptional customer services and products at
a competing price.
Market segmentations for solar panel to be installed on infrastructure are large scale
consumer demands like corporate offices, malls, parks, factories etc and small-scale
consumer demands like household solar instalments, small offices, day to day household
From large scale and small scale, the two market segments to consider, large scale sale is
less price sensitive as we can offer discounts
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