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With over 1.7 million electric vehicles on the road in France1, offering a charging station service is a major asset for commercial establishments. Faced with a constantly growing electric-vehicle-driving customer base, retailers who wish to stand out from the competition and diversify their income have an opportunity to seize. Do you want to understand all the opportunities offered by the expansion of electric mobility? Our experts reveal 3 good reasons to install charging stations!

Improve your brand image and retain your customers

In this era of energy transition, consumers are increasingly attentive to environmental issues. When making purchases, they are also sensitive to companies’ environmental commitments. This trend is particularly evident in the retail sector: 75% of French people believe that retailers’ efforts towards environmental protection improve their image2. Moreover, 81% of them consider these efforts essential to combat the environmental crisis3.

As an essential prerequisite for the development of electric vehicles, and meeting the expectations of environmentally conscious consumers and drivers, the installation of charging stations is fully in line with this virtuous dynamic, supporting the development of greener mobility.

For retailers, the challenge is twofold. On the one hand, it’s about substantiating and materialising your environmental ambitions to customers; on the other, it’s about responding to a growing demand by offering equipment that has become essential for many consumers using an electric vehicle.

Increase your visibility and attract new customers

With more than 127,000 public charging points as of 31 March 20244, France is pursuing its objective of massive deployment of EVSE (Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment) across the territory. To attract new customers, retailers and points of sale would benefit from taking advantage of this dynamic by contributing to the territorial network. Indeed the rise of electromobility is transforming the travel habits of electric vehicle drivers. According to an Enedis5 study, 70% of them plan their route according to the charging stations available on their journey6.

Installing a charging station ensures greater visibility in your catchment area, thanks to, among other things, specific referencing tools for electric car drivers (Chargemap, Electromaps, etc.). Once installed, the service becomes a real lever for customer loyalty and brand preference.

Why go elsewhere if the experience is good, smooth and the cost of charging is known in advance?

Generate additional revenue and enhance your assets

Beyond the indirect income generated by attracting new customers, installing charging stations in your car park can also ensure direct revenue. Various economic models exist to make your charging points profitable.

You can choose between buying the equipment (which implies maintaining the charging stations and billing the charges directly to customers yourself) or making part of your car park available to a charging operator, who will take care of the installation and operation of the charging infrastructure (upkeep, maintenance).

This second option offers you the possibility of generating regular rental income, without any initial investment on your part. By renting part of your land to a charging operator, the latter commits to paying you fixed or variable rent. The billing of charging sessions to customers then allows them to make the charging stations profitable. Note, however, that this arrangement remains subject to strict eligibility criteria from the operator.

In addition to diversifying your income sources with regular rents, a car park equipped with charging stations can significantly enhance the real estate assets of your establishment. As mentioned previously, transforming an underused space into an electric charging zone stimulates footfall at your site, which naturally increases its attractiveness and valuation.

1 March 2024 Barometer: 53,239 vehicles registered, up 9.3% compared to March 2023, March 2024
2 OpinionWay – MagasinResponsable.com, The French and environmental issues in retail, March 2021
3 Same
4 Avere-France (national association for the development of electric mobility), ), National barometer of public charging infrastructure, March 2024
5 The French electricity provider
6 Enedis, Behavioural survey of electric vehicle owners, October 2022