In early 2013, E Source collected and analyzed substantial quantitative and qualitative 2011 data from 10 small and midsize business (SMB) efficiency programs. We focused on direct-install programs—new and old, basic and comprehensive, large and small—from across the US and Canada. Our benchmarking study reveals that, despite great variation among offerings, small business direct-install (SBDI) programs are worth the effort for administrators. Our study can also serve as a helpful resource for utilities interested in creating new programs or enhancing existing initiatives.

Access study results

If you’re a subscriber, this link will take you to the study deliverables: Small Business Direct-Install Programs 2013. If you’re not currently a subscriber, contact us to learn about membership.

The study offers a holistic view of SBDI program design and results, including:

  • Incentivized measures in SMB programs
  • Number of projects completed per program
  • Average cost per project
  • Total program expenditures
  • Breakdown of expenditures—amounts spent on marketing, incentives, and administration
  • Annual program savings
  • Cost-effectiveness
  • Staffing and implementation requirements
  • Quality assurance and quality control requirements
  • Participant profiles
  • Effective marketing tactics
  • Insight from industry leaders on what makes an effective program


This report was compiled through a combination of direct correspondence with program managers and implementers, evaluations, and annual progress reports. It’s a comprehensive assessment of SBDI programs with insights that can help improve the design of any demand-side management program for businesses.