Small Business Saturday - How SMEs Can Save Energy This Year
This Saturday, small businesses everywhere are preparing to open their doors and welcome the public in as part of Small Business Saturday UK.
The campaign encourages consumers to boycott large superstores and support their local communities by shopping in smaller home-grown businesses. The non-charity, non-political initiative’s aim is simply to encourage economic growth where it is needed the most - in local businesses. Small firms around the UK will invite as many customers in as they can, by offering food, drink, music and expert knowledge about their trade. Last year’s SBS was a huge success, with £460 million being spent in small businesses on the day.
While the campaign date is set for 6th December, the organisers hope that the day’s impact will influence consumers to shop locally throughout the entire Christmas period.
Small Businesses and Energy Use
At Love Energy Savings, we know that electricity usage is a primary concern for SMEs, as their bills directly influence their profits. In order to save as much money as possible, they need to strictly monitor their energy use throughout the business.
Many people bring their domestic energy-wasting habits to work with them. Educating members of staff, especially if you are a micro business of 1-10 employees, can help SMEs make huge savings on their energy bills. Simple energy-saving tactics such as switching lights off, avoiding putting machines on standby and limiting heating use are all simple ways that they can conserve energy.
When surveyed by Ofgem, many SMEs claimed that they had trouble understanding their bill, especially if their contract had been rolled over. In some cases, an SME contract had been rolled over without them realising and they were moved on to an emergency tariff which was a shocking 40% higher than it had been before. However, earlier this year energy suppliers were instructed to display the contract end dates on their bills to avoid any confusion. As 83% of SMEs claim to pay their bill via direct debit, it could be that they don’t even look at the bill as it automatically comes out of their bank account.
If you are confused about your bill or you believe it is too high, make sure you contact your energy supplier to straighten it out - you don't want to be paying through the nose for something that you needn't have to.
Cost Price Priority
SMEs are cost-conscious and price is their primary concern, over environmental issues, when choosing an energy supplier.
Further Ofgem research showed that although many SMEs were interested in generating their own energy supply using renewable sources such as solar power, most thought that the return on investment would take too long as SMEs estimated it would be between 10 and 15 years before they made their initial investment back. The price concerns highlight why many small businesses choose to stick with some of the large suppliers as opposed to smaller green energy companies, they believe them to be cheaper. This isn’t always the case.
Local Energy Suppliers
It is interesting that when surveyed by Ofgem, a large proportion of SMEs claimed that they would choose one of the large energy suppliers as opposed to a smaller suppliers - but should small businesses be supporting local energy suppliers too?
In the Ofgem report, SMEs claimed that they opted to go with some of the larger energy suppliers as they believed that there is more chance of continuity with the supply of energy. They also felt that the market is commodity-driven and that there is therefore no real difference between the prices of suppliers, so it wouldn't matter who they were with. This could be why 40% of SMEs haven’t switched suppliers in the last 6 years.
At Love Energy Savings we are supporting Small Business Saturday by helping SMEs to save as much money as they can by helping them to find their ideal energy tariff.
This is why we compare hundreds of prices to guarantee the tariff your business is on is the right one for you. It seems senseless to assume that your energy supplier is the cheapest one for you without comparing other prices. Use our online comparison tool today to make sure you are getting the best deal on your business electricity.