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Best small business energy suppliers – compare prices and reviews 2023

6-minute read

Concerned business owner looking at laptop and bills
Catriona Smith

Catriona Smith

29 June 2023

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It’s never been more important to find the best energy price as small businesses battle with rising costs and a squeeze on profits. If you’re researching energy price suppliers and a new deal, we’ve done some of the legwork for you.

What types of energy tariff can you get?

If you’re considering switching business energy suppliers then you’ll first need to understand the different types of contract on offer:

  • fixed rate – the unit price for your electricity and gas will stay the same throughout your contract (usually between one and three years but can be as long as five years)
  • variable rate – as the name suggests, your energy tariff will vary (up or down) based on wholesale energy price
  • green tariff – when your supplier matches the amount of electricity you use with renewable energy
  • no standing charge – standing charge is the daily fee for supplying your energy, so tariffs with no standing charges mean you don’t pay this fee (but this can mean higher tariffs)

Business energy comparison guide

We’ve looked at business energy tariffs, green energy options, and customer feedback to find the best energy supplier for business owners.

Your business energy consumption and needs will be specific to your business, so it’s important to do your research. You’ll need to get a quote from each to find the best deal and tariff for you.

And as gas and electricity deals are usually treated separately for business energy customers, you’ll need to get a quote for each.

Below is a summary of some of the main business energy suppliers to consider.


Business energy tariff

Green energy

Good to know

Trustpilot score

British Gas

Fixed rates for one to three years

Renewable energy plans available if you use more than 150,000 kWh of electricity or gas

One of the UK's 'big six' energy suppliers


EDF Energy

Fixed rates for one to three years or a variable tariff with no exit fee

Zero-carbon for business and 100% renewable contracts available for large businesses

One of the UK's 'big six' energy suppliers


E.ON Next

Standard variable tariff and discount for paying Direct Debit (no fixed tariffs right now)

100% renewable-backed electricity for all small businesses

Larger businesses are directed to npower Business Solutions.

One of the UK's 'big six' energy suppliers


Octopus Energy

Fixed 12-month tariffs with exit fee or variable contracts

100% green electricity for every customer

Rewards if someone refers to you



Fixed-price and flexible contracts

100% renewable electricity included for fixed-price plans

One of the UK's 'big six' energy suppliers


Scottish Power

Fixed-price and flexible contracts

Renewables for business available on fixed term contracts

One of the UK's 'big six' energy suppliers



12 or 24-month fixed price contract

Doesn't offer a renewable contract – only 3% of the overall electricity Utilita sells is currently matched with renewable sources (Which?)

Supply through smart and prepayment meters


Who are green energy suppliers?

Green energy is generated from a renewable source such as wind or solar. You might consider a green energy supplier to make a more environmentally friendly choice, although this can mean higher tariffs.

Ovo Energy, Octopus Energy, EDF Energy, and British Gas are just a few examples of green energy suppliers.


Octopus Energy has far and away the best customer reviews when it comes to Trustpilot scores. And they were runner up in the 2022 Uswitch Energy Awards in two categories:

  • Most Likely to Recommend (2nd)
  • Best Customer Service (3rd)

You can compare current and historical tariffs with Octopus Energy by just putting in your business postcode. And with green electricity for all customers, they’re an environmentally-friendly option for your business energy too.

Can you switch energy supplier?

Yes, it’s possible to switch energy suppliers but this depends on your contract terms.

Small businesses may be able to switch if:

  • your current contract is due to end soon (usually between one and six months)
  • you’re moving to another commercial property
  • you’re on a deemed rates tariff – these are 28-day rolling contracts that happen when you move business premises without agreeing a new deal with your energy supplier

It’s worth bearing in mind that exit fees can apply if you choose to leave your contract early. But according to Citizens Advice, this can’t be charged if your contract ends in seven weeks or less.

How to utilise comparison websites

Ofgem (Office of Gas and Electricity Markets) has a list of accredited comparison websites to help you find the best deal.

Uswitch for Business is one site you can use to compare tariffs. They also have annual awards for the best energy suppliers across a range of categories.

What’s happening with energy prices?

The global energy crisis has been affecting consumers and businesses alike since the end of 2021.

A range of factors have contributed to this, including higher demand after the coronavirus pandemic, cold weather in winter, and the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

Energy prices increased by 8.1 per cent in the year up until May 2023, according to data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

However wholesale prices are no longer increasing and this is reflected in Ofgem’s price cap.

When will my energy prices go down?

Falling wholesale energy prices are reflected in Ofgem’s latest price cap for July 2023.

The energy regulator sets a price cap for domestic customers every quarter, and it’s down £426 from £2,500 in April to £2,074 for July. This is the first time in nearly two years that the price cap has decreased.

This means energy bills should start to go down in the second half of 2023 if you’re on a variable contract.

While Ofgem only sets a price cap for consumer prices, there’s nothing in place for businesses. That said, if you run your business from home then you may well benefit from this as you’re unlikely to be on a business energy contract.

Support tapered off for small businesses with the end of the energy bill relief scheme in April. But there’s an energy bill discount scheme in place until 31 March 2024, which offers a discount on wholesale gas and electricity prices.

However, the main challenge is that many businesses are locked into expensive, long-term contracts so high prices are likely to continue despite wholesale prices starting to fall.

7 steps to get the best business electricity rates

Here’s seven tips for how to get the best business energy rates for your business:

  1. Compare quotes from as many suppliers as you can.
  2. Claim back the VAT on your energy bills if you’re VAT registered.
  3. Negotiate with suppliers if you’re struggling to pay your bills.
  4. Know your rights – you can switch if you’re contract is coming to an end within seven weeks (or sooner depending on your contract terms).
  5. Avoid staying on rolling or deemed contracts – compare and research better deals as soon as you can.
  6. Look for online deals – for example EDF offers an online fixed for business contract with the cheapest tariffs.
  7. Select how you pay – paying by Direct Debit can mean cheaper tariffs as it’s cheaper for suppliers to administer.

Solar panels for business – are they worth it?

Generating your own electricity with solar panels on your business premises will reduce your energy bills. And some business energy suppliers offer special contracts if you’re selling electricity back to the National Grid.

However there are setup costs to consider and the initial outlay of investing in solar could mean it’ll take a long while for you to see the benefits.

That said, you might be able to access solar panel grants for businesses to help with some of the costs. There’s not much out there currently but keep an eye on the government’s website for funding to help your business become greener.

Pubs and restaurants see 80% increase in energy bills

The average energy bill for hospitality businesses has increased by 81 per cent since last year, and is three times more than in 2021. This is according to research from CGA Insight, who surveyed hospitality businesses across three weeks from the end of April to middle of May.

Four trade bodies united to issue a joint statement. BII, BBPA, UKHospitality, and Hospitality Ulster said:

"The energy crisis has been pushing pubs, bars and restaurants to breaking point for a year now. The Energy Bill Relief Scheme provided a short respite but with that falling away last month businesses are back to paying high costs, with no end in sight for the thousands locked into contracts who will be obligated to pay extortionate rates well into next year.

"Suppliers must be instructed to offer renegotiation to businesses locked into long-term, high-cost contracts, whilst businesses on the brink should be offered direct, targeted support."

Small business guides and templates

Are you researching business energy suppliers and deals? Let us know how you get on in the comments below.

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Photograph: DragonImages/
Catriona Smith

Written by

Catriona Smith

Catriona Smith is a content and marketing professional with 12 years’ experience across the financial services, higher education, and insurance sectors. She’s also a trained NCTJ Gold Standard journalist. As a Senior Copywriter at Simply Business, Catriona has in-depth knowledge of small business concerns and specialises in tax, marketing, and business operations. Catriona lives in the seaside city of Brighton where she’s also a freelance yoga teacher.

We create this content for general information purposes and it should not be taken as advice. Always take professional advice. Read our full disclaimer

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