Businesses often don't notice how much money their gas and electricity bills drain away unnecessarily.
Although four in ten businesses (39%) say that cutting costs is their prime objective for achieving business growth, just a third (33%) proactively check the market before signing their next energy contract, and three in ten (30%) simply allow their existing energy contract to roll-over.
As a result, many businesses end up paying over the odds when a simple switch could save them many thousands of pounds a year.
A spokesperson for Business Juice explained:
“There are many businesses struggling to make ends meet in the current environment and ensuring that they are on the right energy deal could make a real difference.
“It is important that businesses understand energy contracts and what, when and how they need to act in order to prevent continual rollover onto uncompetitive terms.
“By taking the confusion out of the market we hope to encourage many more businesses to actively take control and shop around for the best deal.”
Top 10 Tips
Here are our top ten tips to help you make sure you get the right business energy contract:
You'll find your contract end date on the initial correspondence from your energy company.
It should also be on your bill, visit our guide to find out where it is located for your supplier.
This is just the start however, waiting for your contract end date to occur before acting will mean you have missed your opportunity to strike a great deal. Work back 6 months from your contract end date and put the date in your diary to give yourself plenty of time to negotiate a good deal.
All suppliers must send you a renewal letter, the point at which this arrives differs by suppliers however whenever it does hit the mat, this is your last trigger for action.
Savvy businesses are in engaging in the market well ahead of the arrival of their renewal letter so they can view the price being offered in its true context.
The key is to remain vigilant, act in advance of any renewal letter and engage with your energy broker to sound out the whole market before making your decision.
To understand when your supplier will issue their renewal letter and what happens if you don't act visit our Supplier Guides
If you’re moving into new premises, it's the perfect time to get the best energy deal you can find.
Unfortunately it’s also the worst possible time.
Not only will you be busy with the move but you will be inundated with calls by unscrupulous sales people claiming to be from the “meter agency” or some other official sounding office and demanding you sign up immediately or risk being cut off.
In the cold light of day we’d realize this is hogwash but when the mind is busy and the body is tired we sometimes don’t spot the obvious.
Our advice? Given you’ll have a pretty good idea when the move will take place, give Business Juice a call, let us know you’re moving and whilst you might not have all the necessary details to hand immediately you can at least be sure that you’ve taken action, that we’ve got your back and that you can dispatch the nuisance callers with the news that your broker is acting on your behalf already. If that doesn’t work, unplug your phone and don’t plug it in for a fortnight, they’ll have lost interest by then. We won’t have.
Don't run the risk of getting tied into a new contract automatically - make sure you check the notice period (it’s usually between 28 and 120 days) and submit your termination notice on time.
Check out our dedicated supplier pages to ascertain your suppliers’ termination requirements and download our ready made termination letter specific for your supplier.
Although it sounds a little crazy, you not only need to be careful not to be too late in sending your termination but you also need to be careful not to send your termination notice too early!
This is an element of the industry that we have been working hard to see the back of and we’re delighted that a number of major suppliers do not require a “window” for termination but just have a “latest date”. This is a step forward but even then make sure that you always send any termination notice via recorded delivery, even if for convenience you send it via email, a signed for postal copy will ensure you know it has been received and processed enabling you total freedom of movement at contract end.
Once you're signed up to a business energy contract with a supplier you can’t get out of it unless you move property– there’s no cooling-off period – not even 30 minutes.
As a result it’s important that you’ve done your homework before you sign up, preferably get Business Juice to do that homework for you.
A simple call will get us working on your behalf and we can access the whole market and strike you the perfect deal, safe in the knowledge that it is the right decision.
It pays to do research when it comes to going green.
Green can be a dedicated 100% green tariff or a ‘fuel mix’ with a healthy proportion made up of renewable or pure green energy sources.
It doesn’t even have to be an added expense if you shop around and work with a knowledgeable advisor. Here at Business Juice we pride ourselves on our knowledge, experience and advice in low carbon, green and renewable products and can find the deal that suits you and your corporate & social responsibility needs.
To find out more visit our dedicated supplier pages to view their fuel mix or take a look at our fuel mix section for an overview of the market.
Do you know about when and where your business uses the most energy?
You probably don’t think about it and certainly won’t have the time to find out for yourself. That’s where technology helps, a smart meter can help you monitor your energy usage accurately, work out exactly what you’re spending and when, so that you can learn to use your energy more efficiently and cut your business costs.
Some suppliers provide smart meters as standard in their tariffs, others offer upgrades, and yet more haven’t made the transition. We can help you identify the suppliers whose metering technology best fits your needs for today and tomorrow.
If you find a good deal with a small energy company - go for it! Don't worry about the size of the company or whether you’ve heard of them before.
Many of the smaller companies have been around for five years or more and are responsible for the more innovative offerings in the market. The likes of Ovo Energy, Opus Energy, Hudson Energy and so on have become key players in the competitive market, shaking up the behaviours and offerings of the more traditional players.
And don’t worry, though it is a rare occurrence, if a supplier goes out of business, whether they’re big or small, well known or unknown, you get the same protections, your supply will continue and you'll be looked after by the Ofgem under the Supplier of Last Resort scheme, so you won't lose out.
Whilst in business energy you can’t physically change supplier before the end of your current contract you can get a quote and agree the deal for the post contract period at any time. Many suppliers price up to 6 months in advance.
In any case you should always get quotes, other than from your current supplier, at least 120 days before your contract end date.
There’s no obligation to sign up for a contract when you get a quote but if you find a supplier offering advantageous rates, you can secure them and they will be locked in for you and your contract with the new supplier will take effect once your current contract ends.
Business Juice can help keep you abreast of the market, you can even tell us what you’d like to pay and if the market can match it we’ll let you know.
As the energy market is volatile however it is important to not only have a target price but a target time so you don’t leave things too late and end up on a uncompetitive rate.
Over a third of small businesses don't make the move to find a cheaper supplier when their contract runs out. Don't miss the opportunity!
Shopping around is easy; just get in touch with Business Juice and whatever your specific requirements we’ll find a supplier and a deal for you and your business needs.
Want to know more?
If our top 10 tips have whetted your appetite for tackling the business energy market give us a call on 0800 051 5770, we'd love to hear from you.