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New Energy Efficiency Labels from 2021: More Transparency for Consumers and Major Challenges for the Electronics Industry

Reading Time 5 mins | March 4, 2021 | Written by: AX Semantics

For more than 20 years, the EU energy label has been an important driver of market development and increased demand for energy-efficient products. For some electrical appliances, the new energy efficiency classes on energy consumption have been in place since March 2021. The classes A+, A++ and A+++ will disappear completely. Instead comes the new scale from A to G. 

The aim of the new regulation is to give consumers more transparency through more meaningful energy efficiency classes. At the same time, electronics retailers are facing new challenges. Because from March 01 to 18, 2021, they have the major task of providing their devices in stationary and online retail with new labels and changing the product descriptions.

Which electrical appliances are affected by the change?

Electrical appliances that will receive a new energy efficiency class label are refrigerators, freezers, dishwashers, washing machines, washer-dryers, monitors and televisions. Lamps will not get the new energy efficiency classes until September 2021, and the new labels must also be displayed alongside the old versions for 1.5 years. For all other electrical appliances requiring labeling, the changeover is not expected to take place until 2024.

New EU energy efficiency classes
EU energy efficiency classes by March 2021 (source


What is changing in the energy efficiency classes and why?

The change in the efficiency scale also increases the requirements for the frugality of electrical appliances. In the future, current models will be found in worse classes. For example, an original “A+++” appliance will be in class D on the new efficiency label. The previously best-ranked appliances only achieve class C or class D. Only a few products meet the requirements for the new A and B classes. This means there is still “room for improvement” from an efficiency perspective. 

In addition, the method of measurement has changed. For this reason, the electricity consumption figures in kilowatt hours on the new energy consumption labels are not comparable with those on the old labels. As a result of the change in measurement, the kilowatt-hour figure for dishwashers, for example, will be lower in the future than it was previously. By comparison, it will be higher for refrigerators, as the test took permanent use into account.

Another new feature is that consumers can obtain further product information via a QR code. For dishwashers, for example, additional information such as the duration of the energy-saving program can be added.

What should electronics retailers be aware of?

Electronic retailers must exchange the new energy efficiency classes and product data sheets for the old ones at the start date of the respective new label in stationary and online retail. It is important that this process is completed between March 01 and March 18, 2021. After these 14 days, only the new label may be displayed, unless exemptions apply, such as for light sources.

Saim Alkan, CEO & Founder of AX Semantics talks about the new energy efficiency classes and explains what electronics retailers need to consider (German Video).

How to adapt product descriptions to the new standard in a scalable way

To avoid returns and consumer reluctance to buy, it is recommended that electronics retailers explain in detail in their product descriptions why an appliance is rated in a worse energy efficiency class than before. This creates transparency and trust with consumers.

With automated content generation, retailers have the possibility to create and adapt unique product descriptions according to the requirements of the EU energy label. This makes automated product descriptions the ultimate solution for those who are short on time and have many products to write about.

AX Semantics, as Natural Language Generation (NLG) software with its product description generator, offers a decisive upgrade to small companies, startups, resellers but also to large e-commerce giants from the electronics industry. Automated content creation relieves exactly where human writing by hand is too time-consuming. In addition, companies benefit through lower return rates, increasing conversion rates and good Google ranking at the same time. The user configures rules, statements and variances in the desired style and gets unique content for products with new energy efficiency classes.

AX Semantics