Big businesses usually consumer a lot of energy, so it is therefore not surprising that standard business energy deals are costly. Sadly, this means that small businesses who do not use as much energy, often suffer. This guide looks at the best independent energy suppliers for smaller businesses, with the hope that you can redirect money previously spent on excessive energy bills to different uses such as expanding your business.
In a nutshell, an independent energy supplier is one which is not a member of the ‘Big Six’ who dominate the energy market. They generally offer lower prices, flexible tariffs and better customer service, so are great options for small businesses.
Obviously, a competitive rate tops the list - as a budding business one of your main priorities is keeping your costs as low as possible. Reliability is also key, as you will want your energy management to be as ‘hands-off’ as possible - you inevitably have bigger issues demanding your attention. Flexibility is also crucial, since small businesses are constantly changing. If your business is small but established, this might mean looking for a longer contract in order to keep the lowest possible rates. For a new startup, contract-free options will be ideal, allowing you to avoid commitment. You should also look for sustainability - for the sake of the planet.
Firstly, keep in mind that this list is not exhaustive - there are plenty of good independent energy suppliers out there. This guide simply shares some of the most acclaimed. It is up to you to compare business energy deals and find the best one for your business.
Opus Energy is one of the largest independent energy suppliers. They are made particularly appealing by its renewability - the vast majority of the energy they buy is from sustainable sources, and they offer online management and paperless billing. Recognising that energy rates for small businesses were unfair, they developed their ‘Business Clusters’ scheme which allows small businesses to group up in order to get cheaper energy deals. In terms of customer service, they boast 85% of all phone calls answered within 30 seconds.
Ovo Energy are growing rapidly, and this is most likely due to their excellent customer service, interest in sustainable energy, and competitive rates. One particular selling point is the lack of an automatic rollover at the end of your contract, meaning you will not immediately be moved onto a higher tariff. They also offer a seven-day cooling off period once you have entered into a new contract, allowing you to back out if you find a better deal.
UGP offer smart metering options, which is great if you want to be in total control of your energy usage. They also offer discounts if you choose to have both your gas and electricity supplied by them. A further incentive may be their removal of standing charges on certain energy deals, allowing your business to only pay for the energy it uses - great for saving money in those early business years.
Total Gas and Power offer bespoke services for businesses based on their individual requirements. That’s right - they tailor their services to you, not the other way around. They also offer a rare 5-year fixed rate tariff and boast an Eco-Energy option which supplies 100% renewable energy.