What Do Retailers Have To Do With Electric Vehicles?
How Anyone Can Be a Leader in the EV Space
Estimated Read Time: 3 Minutes
It’s no secret that electric vehicles (EVs) are no longer a niche market. These days, practically every automaker offers an electric model, and they should! In 2022, EV sales skyrocketed by a remarkable 65%, constituting 5.8% of new car sales, up from 3.2% the previous year.1 As the EV landscape continues to evolve, its clear that anyone, including retailers, can become key players in this exciting field.
In a previous POV, Are You Ready for the EV Explosion, we highlighted the disruption happening in the automobile industry. It’s becoming increasingly apparent that the winners and losers will emerge quickly. The way we see it, anyone can be a player in the EV arena (read more on that here). As the market for EVs continues to expand and the barriers to entry (cost, availability, etc.) recede, we’re sounding the alarm for gas stations, convenience stores, and retailers to make their mark in the EV arena. Here’s how:
Building Relationships with EV Manufacturers
Imagine building partnerships with EV manufacturers and becoming a trusted curator of EV products within your store. You can create a connection point for local makers and community members, offering a subscription or membership-based sales model to promote building a community of EV owners.
The space could be a vibrant sustainability and community hub that offers a vision of a more holistic, eco-friendly lifestyle, complete with artificial trees that offset your carbon usage by absorbing CO2 and producing oxygen, solar panel parking lots that keep cars shaded and cool, and zero waste grocery and convenience stores.
Revolutionizing EV Charging Stations
One of the biggest challenges EV users face is finding convenient charging stations. Retailers can fill this gap by providing trend-forward and cutting-edge amenities at their charging stations.
Our consumer research indicates that people expect more than just charging: they desire entertainment, retail, and food and beverage options. In fact, 75% of respondents said they would shop at a specific retailer if they offered more EV charging stations (check out the full article here). Offering these amenities can make your band the go-to choice for EV owners. Think of your charging station as a place where charging is synonymous with entertainment, productivity, and convenience. You can get creative and consider hosting community events like drive-in movies for EV customers while they charge.
Expanding Your Reach as an EV Charging Partner
Consider becoming a leading global partner for EV charging stations at schools, businesses, hospitals, shopping malls, and other organizations. Position yourself as the preferred choice when people need a longer charge and want to go about their daily tasks. You might even think about optimizing parking lots and transforming your existing business into valet “ghost charging” stations like the ghost kitchen concept.
Enhancing the In-Car Experience
Don’t overlook the in-car experience either. services that elevate the in-car experience when customers want to wait in their car while they charge, whether it’s to avoid inclement weather, optimize time, or keep kids occupied, etc.
With the surge in EV adoption, retailers have a remarkable opportunity to embrace innovative and environmentally responsible retail. There’s a huge opportunity for innovative and radically responsible retail. However, time is of the essence. Sleeping on it may allow competitors to seize this chance before you do.
Our mission is to imagine new possibilities for dynamic physical spaces that align with an energy-forward lifestyle encompassing retail, workplace, entertainment, wellness, and hospitality. We aim to elevate EV charging stations from mere utilities to lifestyle-driven destinations and want to help you find out what this means for your brand. Check out some of our case studies (start here, here, and here) and reach out to TalkWithUs@wdpartners.com to unlock the potential for your brand in the EV market.
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