One of the great business opportunities surfacing over the next few years is the development of service centers designed specifically to cater to EV drivers while their EVs charge. We have talked about this in the comments quite a bit here on CleanTechnica, but while many charging stations are already in charging-friendly areas, the opportunity is still ripe for the picking.
One savvy business — the Steak Escape Sandwich Grill — was flagged on Imgur as one business leaning in on Tesla drivers specifically, near the Maumee (Ohio) Supercharger location. The sandwich shack is offering drivers a 10% discount if they drop in for a bite while charging — a great strategy to ease into the new potential customer base that the Supercharger location has presented.
Where else can businesses snag a very specific target audience for at least 30 minutes all the way up to an hour and half? Not many opportunities as choice as this have presented themselves over the last few decades, and what’s shocking is that this market is yet to be tapped with focused intention.
We’ve put forward several options — Starbucks bundling its locations with Superchargers and DC “Fast” Chargers, stationary car wash / vacuum / shampooing / detailing services also seem like a natural build, as well as the obvious fast food joint pairing. In my brain, this seems like such a ripe opportunity, but like many cleantech topics that are so obvious to those in the know, the masses still seem blind to the opportunity.
Families could also be targeted with a toy store geared towards the captive audience that kids tend to be on long road trips with their adult companions. Stretching beyond the normal, a playzone geared towards extracting as much kid energy as possible as quickly as possible would almost be worth the stop on its own. We did this very thing on childhood road trips — stopping after 2 hrs of driving on the 4 hour trip to our grandparent’s house.
While driving across the US on my ~2,600 mile / ~4,100 kilometer Tesla road trip, there weren’t too many charging stations that felt well equipped, though a few stood out. Specifically, the Effingham, Illinois charger that was at a BP gas station which came fully stocked with a loaded super service center where I of course was taxed for some souvenirs for the kidlets back at home.
More than that, on road trips or just away from home, it’s nice to have a bathroom and caffeination station to keep driving on the up and up. There are many things coming in the wave of cleantech currently sweeping the globe, and while service centers aren’t at the top of my list of things I’m most excited about, they are on the list. Just don’t forget the free WiFi. Please. 😀
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