Is it safe to switch to a smaller business energy supplier?
Smaller energy suppliers often offer lower rates to tempt in new customers, and many of them even offer better customer service than the more established Big Six suppliers.
But, given the recent spate of small energy suppliers going to the wall, is it safe to switch to a supplier outside of the Big Six? And how would your business cope if its energy supplier went bust?
How smaller energy suppliers are outdoing the Big Six
It’s safe to say that smaller energy suppliers are exceeding all expectations in the domestic energy market, and are not only offering cheaper prices, but also better customer service than the Big Six.
The annual Which? study takes the opinions of thousands of UK gas and electricity consumers to draw up a list of 30 energy companies in England, Scotland and Wales, along with seven from Northern Ireland.
This year’s survey asked 8,000 UK energy consumers to rate their suppliers based upon the following criteria:
- Customer service (both online and over the phone)
- Ability to deal with complaints
- Value for money
- Accuracy and clarity of bills
- Ability to help customers understand and reduce usage.
Smaller energy suppliers, such as Octopus Energy, Robin Hood Energy, So Energy, Ebico, and Tonik Energy comfortably took the top spots with customer scores of between 80% and 76%, the more established Big Six energy companies all featured in the bottom ten – SSE ranking highest in position 22 with a customer score of just 58%.
If these results leave you in no doubt that smaller suppliers are the way to go, bear in mind that 13 energy suppliers have gone bust in the last 12 months, including Extra Energy, which left around 21,000 business energy customers without a supplier.
So, is it safe to switch to a small business energy supplier?
Is it safe to switch to a small business energy supplier?
In a word, yes. Ofgem, the energy regulator, has safeguards in place to ensure that no households or businesses are left without energy, should their supplier go bust.
The Ofgem ‘safety net’ means your business will automatically be moved to a new supplier, known as a supplier of last resort (SoLR) with no disruption to your service, and no need for you to do anything except take a meter reading, which you should then give to your new supplier when they get in touch.
Ofgem will then appoint a new supplier, but you may find that the deal offered by your new supplier isn’t the most competitive, and you may even be placed on an expensive deemed rates tariff.
That’s why, as soon as a new supplier has been appointed, you should compare prices and switch to a new deal – and because you’ve been placed with a SoLR, you’ll be able to switch immediately.
That’s where the energy experts at UKPower can help.
Why switch business energy supplier with UKPower?
While cutting the cost of your annual business energy bills will most likely be your main reason for switching supplier, we understand that you’ll also want the peace of mind that you’re with a quality provider that offers a reliable supply and great customer service.
That is why we only use a trusted panel of suppliers, all of which offer great prices and a great service.
In order to make it onto our panel, suppliers have to meet the following criteria:
- They need to share our values of trust, expertise and hassle-free - this is what we believe you want from our service.
- They have to be committed to putting you first.
- They have to commit to offering us great prices.
- They have to agree to working with us to make your renewal as smooth as possible.
- Our panel of suppliers includes the Big Six, along with a number of smaller suppliers, all of which can meet the demands and budget of your business.
We build strong relationships with our suppliers, so we can offer you the best service possible - without you having to lift a finger. To start an energy price comparison, give us a call now on 0800 188 4909.
Click here to run an energy price comparison, and see if you could be paying less for your gas and electricity.