Whether.. you choose to call it the Internet of Things (IoT), smart home, connected home or home automation – one thing is clear. It’s here to stay and represents a tremendous opportunity for the independent smart home dealer.
According to a recent report, the smart home market is expected to reach 58.68 billion by 2020. A number of factors contribute to this growth including the rapid adoption of mobile devices, consumer awareness, improved user experience and dramatic cost reductions that come with a competitive market. Adding fuel to the fire, major players such as Google, Apple, Amazon, Dell and Samsung are jumping into the game.
So what does this mean for Smart Home dealers?
Smart Home dealers are well positioned to benefit from the rising smart home tide. There are 3 reasons for this:
1) Security is key
2) DIY isn’t for everyone
3) Relationships matter
#1: SECURITY IS KEY
While there are many useful applications of smart home technology such as energy management, video surveillance, lighting and access control – security is the key adoption driver. According to a recently published 2015 State of the Smart Home Report, for the second year in a row 90% of consumers believe security is one of the top reasons to purchase and use a smart home system. In fact, nearly seven out of ten respondents (69%) said they would be hesitant to purchase a smart home system that did not include security.
Smart application of connected technology can dramatically enhance homeowner security and peace of mind. A very simple example most of us can relate with involves forgetting to arm the security system when leaving for work in the morning. In this case, coupling traditional security with smart home technology enables the homeowner to control the system right from their smart phone.
Now consider a slightly more elaborate use case involving the integration of motion detection, remote video and access control. When a visitor arrives at the front door of the home, real time video automatically begins streaming to the homeowner’s smart phone. After viewing the video, the homeowner can decide whether or not to remotely disarm the security system, unlock the door and allow the visitor access to the home.
From a security dealer perspective, the great thing about these examples and countless others is that security and peace of mind are at the core of the use case. This creates an opportunity for dealers to extend their product line to deliver more value to the homeowner and grow their business. As smart home technology continues to gain momentum, homeowners will come to expect security dealers to offer fully interactive security systems as part of their portfolio.
#2 DIY ISN’T FOR EVERYONE
Google the words “smart home security” and you’ll see a number of solutions intended to be self-installed by the homeowner. Commonly referred to as DIY solutions, these systems are growing in popularity with technically savvy consumers.
That said, most consumers prefer to have help with system installation. In the 2015 State of the Smart Home Report, nearly 3 out of 4 respondents (74%) said they would like some help with the installation and set-up of their smart home devices – and 52% said they preferred to have someone do the entire installation and set-up for them.
Again, this plays in the favor of the security dealer who already has significant expertise in system installation. With smart home manufacturers continuing to focus on ease of use for both the homeowner and the installer, security dealers can incorporate these products into their portfolio without dramatically affecting installation time or system management complexity.
#3 RELATIONSHIPS MATTER
Finally, independent Smart Home dealers have long-standing relationships with their customer base and brand awareness within their served market. They are in a position to act as “trusted advisor” – helping homeowners understand the value delivered through security-focused use cases enabled by smart home technology.
Many dealers are in the process of upgrading existing customers from wired to wireless. Why not use this as an opportunity to add interactive functionality to the home and increase revenue?