Running a small business can be a balancing act between managing revenue and overheads and ensuring profitability. That’s why any opportunity to save is an opportunity worth pursuing. With this in mind, here’s how small businesses can get the best deal on their gas prices.
How to find the best business gas tariff
Different energy suppliers offer different gas deals depending on their unit rates and your business’ circumstances. Finding the best deal starts with comparing quotes from multiple suppliers. The price of business gas depends on the individual circumstances of your business.
Factors that affect your gas price include:
The size of your business
Some energy companies only supply businesses of certain sizes:
- Small: and micro businesses
- Large: Businesses with high gas usage
- Multi-site: Businesses that need service at more than one location (multi-site operations are often offered a discount on business gas prices)
The size of your business affects how much energy you use, and thus affects the type of gas tariff that best suits your needs.
Your business’ location
Not all energy companies supply the same areas, so your choices may be limited by your business’ location. If your business is situated across multiple locations, it’s advisable to seek a multi-site deal as some suppliers offer discounts on multi-site tariffs.
The length of your contract
Most small businesses choose gas contracts between 12 and 48 months, but some contracts run for longer. Different length contracts generally also have different rates. Before jumping in to choosing the cheapest one, you’ll need to ask the following questions:
- How long do you plan to stay at your business premises?
- Is the size of your business likely to change?
- How often do you want to be able to switch suppliers?
The type of contract tariff
There are two types of business gas contracts:
- Fixed – price per unit stays the same for the length of the contract. Fixed gas contracts are usually cheaper, but tie you on for a longer period.
- Variable/ flexible – price per unit of gas may go up or down. You pay for the gas you need upfront, which means that you can take advantage of low rates if your usage is high. However, if prices drop after you buy, you could lose out.
Other contract variables:
- Eco contracts: Gas supply comes from renewable sources.
- Multi-site contracts: This fixes the price of your gas when you use one energy company to supply all your business premises. Most suppliers offer a discount for multi-site contracts, so shop around to get the best deal.
- No standing charge: Some business gas tariffs come with no standing charge, which means you won’t have to pay a daily rate for your service. Bear in mind, however, that most tariffs without a standing charge come with a higher unit rate.
Compare quotes to find the best deal on business gas prices
To find the best deal on your business gas, you’ll need to get as many quotes as possible from different suppliers. Check the terms of your existing contract and be ready to switch your service when you are within your notice period.
Remember to compare:
- Unit rate – the cost per each kilowatt hour (kWh) of gas you use
- Standing charge – the daily fee paid to your supplier for managing your account
- The rate type – fixed or variable?
- The contract length – how long you have to wait before switching again
Collecting and comparing gas price quotes can be a time-consuming process, which is any many small businesses choose to use the services of an energy consultant to do the hard work for them. With expertise in the energy market and preferential supplier relationships, an energy broker will be able to find you the best gas deal for your business’ unique needs.