Paperless utility bills are the future for the industry for a variety of reasons that include sustainability, cost efficiency, and, most importantly, customer convenience.
Although a majority of consumers may not be on board with the transition to paperless billing, it’s still good to have the option for those who are. It’s also good to encourage those who are opposed to paperless billing to try it out so that they’re able to see the benefits of paperless billing with their own eyes and wallets. One of the best places to set up a paperless billing option for your customers is through an app.
Here, we’ll outline the many benefits of setting up paperless bills on your utility app:
Utilizing an Autopay Feature
According to The Review of Economics and Statistics, 41% of all bills in the United States are set to be automatically paid every month or whenever the payment is due.
Setting up an autopay feature on your app for paperless billing means that your customers are less likely to forget to pay their bills, benefitting both you and the consumer.
People are working longer hours than ever in order to make ends meet, and they just don’t have the time to keep track of and check to make sure that they paid all their bills, especially when they have to sit down and write out multiple checks a month. Going paperless and offering an autopay feature for your customers means they have more time and one less thing to worry about.
Allowing Push Notifications
There are many ways to enjoy the benefits of paperless billing through an app, though, and one of those is simply allowing your customers to choose to set up push notifications that will alert them when their bill needs to be paid. It still gives them agency over when the bill is paid, and it allows them to fill out the payment information themselves and authorize it each time in order to check for discrepancies.
Along with alerts when bills are due, push notifications may also include other important information, such as live updates about their energy usage, updates during power outages, etc.
Promoting Other App Features
By developing an app to allow your customers to use paperless billing, you can also open the doors for them to utilize other features of an app so long as you provide them.
One idea is to give them a way to easily and conveniently report power outages. Phone lines can easily become congested with calls from concerned individuals who need power to go about their daily lives when outages occur. A streamlined reporting process on an app would allow your company to see precisely which areas are affected and where your focus needs to be directed. With reports from around your area, you can also provide a specific map about which areas are experiencing outages, and when they can expect to have their power back on.
Another fantastic use for an app for utility companies is the ability to offer a more detailed bill, allowing your customers to see a cent by cent breakdown of where their money is going and how it’s benefiting them. It would also allow them to see where they’re maybe spending more money than they should be and adjust their lifestyles to cut down on the cost and save energy or water. With this service being offered on an app, customers can easily opt-in or out of a more detailed report if all they want to know is how much they owe you.
A great example of a company using an app to provide paperless utility bills is Otter Tail Power Company. Here at Onsharp, we helped to streamline their website and make it more consumer-friendly, increasing customer satisfaction.