Business electricity


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How to get the best deal on your business electricity

It was Napoleon who supposedly once sniffed that Britain (or rather, England) was a nation of shopkeepers. Well, these days the UK is also a nation of cafes, offices , landlords and restaurants. And while business owners often get bogged down by complicated legislation such as liability and indemnity insurance, by far the biggest outgoing for many of them is their energy costs. It affects the bottom line of almost every operation. We’re here to help you understand your options. 

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Frequently thought questions

If you run a business, you probably think a lot about how to get a better deal on your commercial electricity – but we’re thinking you don’t always have the time or opportunity to find the answers. So, we’ll save you a job – here are the answers to those frequently thought questions you might have about getting a really great deal on your electricity. 

Why should I switch business electricity suppliers?

Your business probably uses a lot more electricity than the average household, so having a great deal is vital in order to keep it running as well as keeping costs under control. You also might want to benefit from improved customer support or a fixed or flexible tariff. 

How much could I save by switching business electricity?

It’s hard to say exactly how much your business could save in electricity costs because all businesses are different. It really depends on the size of your enterprise, the number of staff there are and also things like how efficiently electricity is being used.

Just like with your own domestic supply, the only way you’ll know for sure, is to run a comparison.

How does switching business electricity work?

The switch itself is simple and straightforward because your new electricity supplier will organise the big changeover with your existing one. The switch should also be quick – taking around four to six weeks.

To find a quote, just start searching by clicking the start a quote button above – answer a few questions about your business and its electricity use and we’ll do the rest. It’s a good idea to have a bill to hand because all the answers we’ll need can be found within it (see our understanding your bill guide to find the information you need from your bill to switch). We’ll then show you a range of available tariffs and all you need to do is pick one.

One of the few things you will be expected to do, is take a meter reading on the day of the switchover. It’s also your job to make sure you’ve paid off any outstanding bills with your previous supplier.

You’ll also need to check your existing contract to see if there are any exit fees if you’re leaving partway through your contract. If there are, then it’s up to you to make sure the deal you’re switching to, is worth it.

What is a smart meter?

A smart meter is a device that shows how much energy is being used and how much it costs. It works in real time so it’s always up to date – which means an end to estimated bills.

Smart meters use mobile phone technology to transmit your energy use data to your supplier. You’ll also receive a small monitor where you can see how much energy is being used.

Smart meters are being rolled out across the country and the government wants the majority of homes and businesses to have them by 2020. If all goes to plan, there should be around 53 million smart meters installed in 30 million household and business premises throughout the UK. It means that homes and businesses can stay on top of their energy use and make choices about how electricity is being used in order to keep bills in check.

Will my business electricity be disrupted?

No, it really shouldn’t and the business can keep on running. Your new electricity supplier will contact your existing one and arrange a date for the change in supply. Even on the day of the switch there shouldn’t be any noticeable change or disruption.

What are the different business electricity tariff options?

Energy suppliers offer both fixed rate and flexible tariffs for electricity – but fixed rate tends to be the norm as it gives businesses protection from fluctuating prices. The drawback is (as it is with domestic electricity) that prices won’t go down if the wholesale price does.

On the other hand – flexible tariffs do allow for decreases in the cost of electricity, but of course you have to be prepared for prices to rise too which can make bills unpredictable. Some flexible tariffs allow you to switch supplier with just 30 days’ notice.

Unlike household energy, you can’t opt for dual fuel tariffs with business use.

Can I switch business electricity if I have more than one electricity monitor in my premises?

Electricity monitors simply show how much electricity is being used – encouraging users to be more energy efficient, which in turn can help shave pounds off your bills. Monitors can be bought as standalone items and having more than one shouldn’t prevent anyone from switching supplier.

If anything, having an electricity monitor may actually encourage you to switch, especially if you’ve tried lots of ways of cutting down on energy use already but not seen your bills get any lower.

Electricity monitors aren’t the same as a smart meter which sends data back to your supplier in order to influence your bill. Your electricity supplier can’t see the data shown on your monitor, it’s purely there for your benefit.

What is green business electricity?

Green electricity comes from renewable sources – like sunlight, wind, rain, plants and geothermal heat. Using an electricity supplier that sources some or all of its energy from renewables is a good way of making sure your business is doing its bit for the environment.

Regular electricity comes from fossil fuels which have formed over millions of years and once it’s gone – it’s really gone so it’s in all of our interest to start trying to be green.

In our journey we’ll show you which suppliers provide green energy, when you see your prices in the more details section.

What information do I need to switch business electricity?

All the information to switch electricity supplier can be found your bill – here are some of things to look out for:


-Your current supplier’s name
- Tariff name and end date
- Your supply type
- How much electricity your business uses


When you start a quote, the more accurate you can be, the better, because it means we can tailor the search to fit your exact needs. You can of course still search without a bill but the results might not be as precise.

If you need help working out how to read your bill, then we can help you – find out more from our Understanding your bill page.

How do I compare business electricity suppliers?

It’s not really any different from switching your domestic supply. It’s just a case of answering a few questions such as how much electricity your business uses and where it’s located. It’s also good to know your meter number too.

We’ll run a search of all the available electricity deals that match your needs based on what you’ve told us. You’ll be able to see your estimated annual and monthly costs based on 1-5 year contracts and also be able to see more information about suppliers to find one that really fits your business ethos – such as if you want one that commits to environmental projects.

It won’t take long and we promise there are no difficult questions – just start a quote and leave the rest to us.

I have solar panels, can I get a business feed in tariff too?

Under the feed in tariff scheme (FIT), businesses that make their own electricity are entitled to money back. Payments are also made by selling excess electricity back to the National Grid.

The amount of money you’re eligible for depends on a few things, such as how many solar panels you have. Your supplier will also need to be registered as a FIT licensee in order make payments to you – and a full list can be found at Ofgem.