Is there a way to remotely turn on outdoor lights?
Sure, but you have to have made the lights “smart” in some way, that is you have to have added a device with a radio so that it can communicate wirelessly with the smart things hub.
That could just be a regular screw in smart bulb like the GE outdoor floodlight, or it could be replacing the light switch that controls the regular lights with a smart switch from any of many different brands.
controlling outdoor lights is a very popular use case for home automation.
Are the switches difficult to install? These are probably stupid questions but I just bought the device and all of the info on this site is making my head spin.
Smart switches can be more difficult to wire than dumb switches, depends on the circuit and to some extent the switch. How comfortable are you with home electrical work?
If you happen to buy models which are also compatible with wink, you can use their pro installation service which cost about $40 per switch.
You can also check with local electricians, many may charge more or less, You just have to shop around.
I have a local electrician who only charges me $15 a switch for installation if he’s doing at least four at a time, but he’s curious about home automation and likes to see all the stuff at my house.