Parks Associates research finds security dealers are branching out into new areas to bolster revenues and add applications that require or enrich professional installation and monitoring. The firm’s 11th annual Security Dealer Perspectives: Views from the Front Line presents and analyzes the results of a nationwide survey of installers/dealers who install security systems, including both owners and those employed by security firms.
The survey reveals that 30% of dealers sold DIY systems in 2023, and nearly all retained their core business of selling professionally installed systems as well. The research quantifies the dealers’ view of the security market, with data compared across multiple surveys, and analyzes competitive pressures, industry conditions, and new trends, including the addition of smart home and interactive technologies.
“In 2023, dealers faced many challenges,” said Jason Paris, VP, business development, Parks Associates. “High interest rates and low home sales meant fewer consumers were moving into resales, a critical time for acquiring a new security system and monitoring services. Inflation continues to temper consumer spending while DIY products competed with security systems for consumers’ wallets.”
Security Dealer Perspectives quantifies shifting demand for smart home devices during the initial sale and as an aftermarket upgrade. It highlights dealer perspectives on how artificial intelligence (AI) and the Matter standard will impact their businesses. Like Matter, AI stands to disrupt the security and smart home market over time. AI is already at the core of technologies like facial recognition and video verification to reduce false alarms. This is the top benefit dealers report from AI today, but they also have concerns about these technologies. For example, just 15% of dealers highlight AI in their customer messaging today, and 36% of dealers are concerned AI will confuse or scare customers.
Generative AI tools are forging a new expectation of how consumers interact with, and what they can expect from, smart home devices and systems. In September 2023, Amazon showed off a generative AI-infused version of Alexa that moves the assistant several rungs up on the evolutionary ladder, greatly improving its knowledge base and conversational style.
“More intuitive assistants will smooth the friction users encounter in having to specify which smart home device an app or assistant should control in a complex installation,” Paris said. “It also stands to raise the perceived benefits of creating a smart home.”