Finding the Cheapest Energy Supplier

Energy Efficiency in the workplace made simple
What is a business energy broker?

When thinking about what an energy broker does, for most, this would be to source prices from the cheapest energy supplier. Which is absolutely correct, among other things our role is to work with you to find the cheapest energy supplier and the cheapest energy prices.

To a novice, this seems like a simple and straightforward task. And once again, you’re right! If everything was honest and simple, managing your renewal contracts should be ‘child’s play’

Before we start making our judgment, let’s go through some of the ‘hurdles’ when searching for the cheapest energy supplier.

Is cheap best?
Firstly, you’ve got to weigh up whether the cheapest energy supplier is best for your business and requirements. It may be best for your wallet but the price isn’t everything when it comes to most things in life. For example, eating a donut may be the best for our tastebuds, but it’s not the best for our health. Energy is similar, although less tasty.

When it comes to buying anything you’ve got to look at the bigger picture, not just price. Would you go with the best price if you knew it would cause problems in the future? In retail for example, if you buy cheap, you buy twice. Unfortunately, when it comes to energy if you buy cheap, you’re stuck until your contract expires. So when you’re in a position of choosing your next supplier, it’s important to weigh up all the options. Yes, the price is important and reducing your overheads as much as possible is the priority but beware of choosing the supplier who is going to cause you a headache.

When searching the market we look at a number of things which the chosen supplier has to be good at and meet our high standard. Things like price, service, reputation, recent reviews, customer service levels and whether their customer service team is in the UK or abroad. These are so important in making sure the supplier we recommend is going to deliver and meet our expectations.

Everyone is ‘best’
If you run or own a business with a working telephone, you’ve not doubt been flooded with calls. Most just trying to get you to agree to a long-term contract over the phone. I’d recommend avoiding these like a rash. The one thing these call centers all have in common is that they are all the ‘cheapest’

No matter which supplier or contract length they offer, they are always offering you the cheapest deal. Which begs the questions, what does ‘cheapest’ mean? Because clearly 99% of them are not the cheapest and you could source better prices elsewhere from a more reliable source. The confusion lies where you have 20 different suppliers all offering the same energy but at different prices, which are all the cheapest. Doesn’t make sense does it, that’s because most suppliers will do or say whatever it takes to make the deal.

Something to think about
A few years ago, a new supplier stormed the market with a large call center and unbelievable prices. Prices which literally were 15-20% lower than the second cheapest energy supplier. It was unheard of and took us back to ‘electricity direct’ days. In the first year of trading, they supplied more than 50,000 business across the UK. The most frequent question was “where’s the catch” “how are they making money.”

The simple answer to this was that it didn’t take long to start seeing the woodwork. The once, the magical dream quickly turned into a nightmare. Fast forward two years, the supplier is breaking all kinds of records…for complaints. The moral of the story is that the price is not most important. Don’t choose the supplier you’re going to have a headache with, choose the reliable one who is going to offer a guarantee.

In summary, when you get your 2-3 different suppliers to quote, make sure you’re choosing the correct supplier for your business and not your wallet. Saving money is important but so is your time. If you’re going to be on the phone with problems 6 months ‘down the line’ what’s the point?

If your energy renewals are upcoming or due, let us do the ‘leg work’ for you. We’ll come back to you with a full report detailing what we found and who we recommend. To learn more, have a look at our website.

Hope you all have a wonderful week ahead!

Rhys Boven
Rhys Boven
Rhys Boven is the Managing Director at leading energy brokers Switched On Energy. Most people have no idea if they are paying the correct amount or are on competitive terms, Rhys uses his expertise in the industry to help his customers make more money, save time, have less stress and peace of mind. Connect with Rhys Boven on LinkedIn >>

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