That’s because energy costs are rising – in fact, 2018 marked the tenth successive year of increased business energy costs. And small- to medium-sized businesses can often be the hardest hit, as the Competition and Markets Authority’s (CMA) 2015 investigation found that SMEs pay much more on average than other businesses.
Why are smaller businesses paying so much for their energy?
When you’re concentrating on running your business, checking when your energy contract is due for renewal can fall down your list of priorities. But if your contract comes to an end without you taking action, you’ll usually be switched to your supplier’s out-of-contract rates – which can increase your energy bills by as much as 50%. That’s why it’s important to be ‘switch-savvy’ when it comes to your business energy.
At Inenco, we want to make sure that businesses of all sizes aren’t paying more than they should be for their energy – so here are our top three tips for switching your energy supplier:
If you want to avoid being automatically switched to your supplier’s expensive default tariff, you need to switch before your current deal ends. Your supplier should notify you before this happens, but it can be easy to miss this when your inbox is already full.
If you have a fixed-term contract, you will find your contract end date and the last date you can terminate on your bill or statement of account. Make note of this date and set yourself a reminder to prepare to switch around a month in advance of the last date you can terminate. If you want to switch to a better deal a few months before your current deal ends, then check the termination clauses on your contract. Many will incur a charge if you leave early, but this could be less than the benefits you will get from switching!
You may be focused on finding the cheapest deal for your business, but there are a range of other factors you should also consider when reviewing the deals available to you. It’s important to find an energy supplier that has a proven track record of good customer service, for example, and you may want to choose a supplier that has experience in providing energy for similar businesses to yours.
Before you choose a supplier, make a list of priorities for your business. If you’ve got a sustainable ethos, for instance, a 100% renewable energy supply might be top of your list. However, if your business uses energy around the clock and would suffer greatly in the event of a power outage, you might be more interested in choosing a supplier that can offer the quickest response times.
In 2017, 67% of those who switched their tariff or supplier used an energy consultancy to do so, and for good reason. Having the support of industry experts can make a real difference, as they have an understanding of the industry and relationships with suppliers that you may not have within your business. They can also do the hard work for you, so you don’t have to spend hours searching for the right deal.
Not all consultants are created equally, however, as some represent one supplier or a small group of suppliers. To ensure that you’ve got the most options available to you, make sure that you find an energy consultancy that is totally independent and can offer you a full view of the market.
Is your energy contract due for renewal?
Make sure that you’re not paying too much for your business energy by talking to Inenco’s experts today – we can help you find a deal that meets all of your business’s needs. Give us a call on 0800 408 1499 or email us for more information.