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Small businesses are still struggling to get bank finance despite Government assurances that banks would be forced to start lending again to help get small to medium enterprises back on their feet. With the constant scare stories about spiralling business energy costs, this will be a perilous time for many businesses.
According to a report by the Press Association today, almost two out of three businesses that went to their bank for finance in the past year had their applications rejected, and many are now turning to credit cards to fund their short term spending needs. This, coupled with the news that credit card interest rates have hit a 12-year high, will be a real concern for many SME owners.
Now more than ever it’s vital for businesses to keep their overheads in tight check, and business gas and business electricity costs are among those overheads that can make a real difference – perhaps even the difference between profit and loss
Reviewing your business energy costs can, at first glance, seem like a nightmare task. You need to establish who you are paying, how much you are paying, and what tariff you are on.
One of the most important things to know, however, is when your business gas and business electricity contracts are up for renewal. Business energy suppliers have a habit of rolling over contracts with very small windows for termination, and you’re highly unlikely to get as good a deal as a new customer if you stick with the same supplier. If you’re unaware of your renewal date, you could find yourself tied into a high-cost contract that’s fixed – so you’re unable to get out of it.
That’s where an online comparison site such as Energy Advice Line can help. Free and impartial business energy comparison services such as EAL have the ability to negotiate excellent rates from major gas and electricity suppliers. What’s more, they can handle the switchover process for you, have pre-prepared termination notices for your old supplier, and can even remind you of your renewal date so you don’t get tied into an expensive business energy contract without your knowledge.
Saving money on essential overheads, such as energy, has always been an important issue for businesses, no more so than now! The current climate has created an environment where customers are coming to the market to review their business electricity and business gas costs. When considering your company’s position with it’s current supplier there are some important questions that have to be asked. Are we getting the best possible rates for our business electricity and business gas, or could we do better? What are the terms of your current contracts? Do you have to deal direct or can you find an intermediary who can negotiate better?
In the first instance, are you getting the best possible rate for your business electricity or business gas, the answer is not always that easy to find out. First, establish what you’re paying and to whom and on what tariff. It’s certainly worth searching online for business energy tariffs to see who’s charging what, but don’t treat these as ‘gospel’ as there is a lot of variants to take into account. This is where it is important to understand exactly what your commitment is under your current agreement, how long it’s for, and when it’s due for renewal.
Out of all these points knowing when your current business electricity or business gas contract is due for renewal, is probably the most important. “Why?” you may ask but quite often the major companies will roll you into a new contract without advising you and potentially this will be a higher tariff than you’re already on. This could easily be a fixed contract with no get out, leaving you and your business with even higher energy bills just as the weather’s getting colder and you need to maximise production!
Searching online for business electricity comparison sites could pay dividends as you will find a number of companies offering their services to manage and maintain your energy requirements. Check these companies out carefully to make sure they are not one of the larger utility companies operating under a different guise. If they’re not then you could find yourself in a position not only to reduce your energy bills, but someone will take care of the switch and ensure that you never miss a renewal again and who will always be looking out for your best interests.
These companies are often paid a fee or commission by the major corporations but because they manage so many smaller independent businesses they are able to negotiate excellent rates without passing any additional costs onto you the consumer. This ‘win win’ scenario helps the smaller companies and a lot of larger companies to manage their costs and ensure that they survive the economic downturn. Some of these companies have tailored themselves as consumer champions of the business energy market, believing that everyone should be entitled to clear, trustworthy and impartial advice about their business energy bills. Often with an in-house team of specialists they can assist customers with any information or queries they may have, though it is worth visiting their web site or calling them to see what they can offer – it could be time and money well spent that should return a cosy feeling of profitability.
Energy Advice Line has been working with LexisClick Online Marketing for nearly two years now to ensure that businesses are aware of the savings that can be made to their business electricity and business gas bills. In those two years visit to the site have increased from just over 700 visits per month to over 2000.
In total over this time there have been over 39,800 visits, 193,997 page views, spending on average over four minutes on the site. Of all these visits, 77.57% are new visits. From Energy Advice Line’s MD, Julian Morgan’s point of view this is good news that they are able to reach businesses and provide them with a valuable service. As Julian explains “Energy Advice Line was set up specifically to address the needs of business and obtain the best possible business electricity, business gas and now business telecom offers and prices. EAL, however, does maintain a transparent approach to its quotation process and the service is free to use as EAL receive an introduction payment from the new provider”.
Working with LexisClick has been a progressive journey that has employed a number of successful tactics that are core to the company’s methodology, Stephen Bavister, MD LexisClick explains “Our vision is to ensure that our customers’ websites are easy to find, a pleasure to use, the first to return to, and essential to recommend”.
He continued “Working in partnership with a customer like Energy Advice Line has helped us gain a greater understanding of their business and the clear benefits that they provide to business’, which we endeavour to convey through the website, and other online and offline activities”. With the recent launch of an ‘Affiliate Programme’, Energy Advice Line are looking to expand their offering even further afield and give other small businesses an opportunity to benefit from their expertise in providing a leading online business electricity, business gas and business telecoms price comparison and switching service dedicated exclusively to the needs of small and medium-sized businesses in the UK.
There is a potential risk that a number of business sectors will start to feel the affect of a slow-down in customer spending on the high street. However, small and medium-sized business owners are also being warned to monitor the price they pay for commodities such as business electricity and business gas. These essential business costs are going up at an exponential rate, which when coupled with the downturn in customer spending is putting much greater strain on business profitability.
Small and medium-sized businesses are being advised to act now to address the increase of these essential overheads by comparing what they are currently paying with what is available from other providers in the market.
Energy Advice Line was set up specifically to address the needs of businesses and obtain the best possible business electricity, business gas and now business telecom rates and deals. EAL, however, does maintain a transparent approach to its contracts and as such there are no fees involved from the client, as EAL receive an introductionary commission from the new provider.
Business customers are sometimes not that aware of the potential savings that can be made by switching business energy suppliers, and the perceived amount of paperwork can appear daunting. However, Energy Advice Line do all the legwork for customers, providing an impartial online price comparison service in which the customer can view and evaluate the most competitive offers on the market within seconds. The process of switching is seamless and the savings can be up to 50%.
Energy Advice Line have tailored themselves as consumer champions of the business energy market, believing that everyone should be entitled to clear, trustworthy, and impartial advice about their business energy bills. Energy Advice Line are a totally independent business energy comparison company who will search the entire business energy market on your behalf to establish which suppliers are prepared to offer the best prices.
Any supplier offering competitive business gas or business electricity rates will be included in the comprehensive panel of suppliers. Some of these rates may be the same as going direct but the cheapest prices will often be special rates that Energy Advice Line are able to negotiate through their size and their industry contacts. Suppliers Energy Advice Line have terms with currently include: British Gas Business, Scottish and Southern Energy, npower, Scottish Power, EDF Energy, Haven Power, and e·on.
Energy Advice Line are committed to offering the lowest price for business gas and business electricity, and will always present the best available deals, no matter what commission is being offered by suppliers. If, on the rare occasion, better prices are available by going direct to the supplier, they will be happy to explain the pros and cons of choosing that option.
This is a free service and Energy Advice Line only receive an introductory commission from suppliers once they have safely transferred as a customer. Price transparency is key to earning the trust of customers and, whilst unable to publish the commission rates here, Energy Advice Line are happy to advise on a case-by-case basis.
Helping businesses cut costs!
At a time when businesses in the UK face the very harsh reality of an economic recession, small and medium-sized businesses are being advised to act now to address the increase of these essential overheads by comparing what they are currently paying with what is available from other providers in the market.
Now there’s an opportunity to not only help other businesses save money on their business energy bills, but you can also earn money whilst doing it all by placing a banner or link on your own site. Then every time a client that you introduce successfully transfers to a new provider you will earn an introduction commission!
How? By becoming an Energy Advice Line affiliate you can help them make significant savings on their business electricity, business gas and business telecom bills
Anyone can become an Energy Advice Line affiliate. All you will need to do is refer business customers to the Energy Advice Line and we do the rest. When the customer switches to a new provider you will receive an introduction commission payment – It’s that simple!
The Energy Advice Line is a leading online business electricity, business gas, and business telecoms price comparison site and switching service dedicated exclusively to the needs of small and medium-sized businesses in the UK. The Energy Advice Line’s extensive supplier panel ensures that you are in a unique position of being able to select from a wide choice of extremely competitive prices. Being entirely independent of any particular energy supplier, the Energy Advice Line is uniquely placed to provide impartial advice. The process of assessment of need through to switching of supplier is seamless and, critically for your customer, the service is provided FREE OF CHARGE!
It’s easy – on receipt of your client’s details we will identify when their contract expires, provide a selection of prices from our supplier panel and facilitate the sign up.
You can easily track the status of all of your client’s switches real time by logging into your own affiliate panel. Then as soon as the client goes live, the payment process is triggered and you get paid.
We’ve streamlined the entire process to ensure ease of use, while still maintaining extremely accurate tracking methods so we record every referral that you introduce.
Signing up and setting your account up could not be easier. You start referring business to Energy Advice Line in as little as five minutes.
Too often all we hear in the newspapers is bad news as that’s apparently what sells, but don’t tell Susan Boyle or Jamie Pugh that (Britain’s got Talent)!
There is, however, a lot to be said for encouraging good news, especially in the business community as we like to know we are in good company when going through the process of selecting a service provider. The customers at the Energy Advice Line have been putting their praise in writing. It is not only about helping their customers cut costs by switching them to a new business electricity, business gas and business telecoms supplier; it is also about providing a very good level of service – the following testimonials from their clients are proof of that.
“The Energy Advice Line provides a complete service from the switch to a new supplier to the continual management of our relationship with that supplier – at no extra cost. This saves us considerable time and it certainly takes a worry off our shoulders if we ever have any queries about our bills”
Mr Jeremy Pritchard, North Shields Fish Quay Co. Ltd
“They’ve (Energy Advice Line) always been on hand to help when we have any questions about the supply company, always prompt and efficient – need I say more…that’s why we continue to value their service and attention to detail”
Mr Terry Curthoys, Belvoir Hereford
“Energy Advice Line managed what could have been a very tricky situation with our previous supplier – by negotiating our switch they saved us money, a great deal of time and stress”
Mr Les Fogg, Gamlins Music Centre
“Although we had already transferred to a supplier it soon became apparent that they could not bill our meter configuration. This would have resulted in us being put back on an out of contract default rate that would have cost us dearly. The Energy Advice Line, however, stepped in managed all parties and negotiated a speedy transfer to another supplier that allowed us to maintain our savings which was a great result all round”.
Mr Steven Guest, Ted Williams (Sheffield) Limited
Julian Morgan, MD at the Energy Advice Line commented “We always aim to provide exceptional service and it’s nice to have it confirmed by customers especially when you receive comments like these”.
With an increased level of competition in every marketplace, businesses have to be on their toes and always looking for additional ways to improve their competitive edge…
At Energy Advice Line we have a number of clients every day that come to us for advice on business electricity and business gas prices. Often this is after they find that they have been rolled over on to a new contract term on significantly higher prices without warning by their current business electricity or business gas supplier.
This trend is common place in the poorly regulated UK energy supply sector where supplier’s terms and conditions offer very little in terms fairness and transparency to consumers. The business electricity and business gas regulator is of the opinion that as commercial entities, small and medium sized energy consumers do not need the same protection as their domestic counterparts. This lack of protection allows business electricity and business gas suppliers to be more aggressive with their contract terms, which unfortunately results in many small businesses in the UK paying the price.
Julian Morgan continues “Customers find out too late when they receive a bill from the supplier and their costs have, in a lot of cases, doubled overnight. After speaking to them they are left bewildered by the response when they are told that they should have read the small print.”
Most of the UK’s small and medium-sized business electricity and business gas customers are offered what are called “evergreen” or “roll over” contracts. This means that business energy suppliers can assume renewal if their client does not terminate the contract prior to the contract expiry date. This method of contracting is very onerous and it tends to catch a lot of very busy small business owners out – especially when the renewal offer can be worded in such a way as to look like junk mail.
In today’s climate of very high electricity and gas prices small and medium-sized businesses cannot afford to be caught out by the suppliers hard nosed tactics, especially when they are seeing their bills double if they have been subjected to the contract roll-over tactic.
The Energy Advice Line is an online business electricity and business gas price comparison and switching service dedicated exclusively to the needs of small and medium-sized businesses in the UK.
Being entirely independent of any particular business electricity or business gas suppliers, and focused on the specific requirements of a customer, the Energy Advice Line is uniquely placed to provide good, impartial advice. The process of assessment of need through to switching of supplier is seamless and, critically for the customer, the service is provided at no cost.
Julian Morgan concludes: “If the client is unsure of their contractual obligation to their current business electricity or business gas supplier, please call the Energy Advice Line for free impartial advice or telephone your current supplier as soon as possible. Your business electricity or business gas supplier will be able to provide information on when your price deal expires and how many days termination notice you have to give to avoid the contract roll-over. Given that most of the UK’s suppliers roll their client over onto a new fixed price for a minimum of 12 months it is important that the client gains control of their energy spend as soon as possible.”
As a leading price comparison service, the Energy Advice Line (EAL) has helped 1000’s of businesses save money on their electricity and gas costs. With the current economic climate in mind, they have teamed up with a leading telecoms provider to help businesses reduce the cost of another essential service.
With their new telecoms provider EAL are able to further help businesses save money and reduce their overheads. Businesses can expect to save between 15 – 30% on their current fixed line telecoms costs if they are being billed by BT.
Businesses shouldn’t worry about losing contact as the lines stay with BT wholesale so there is no disruption to the service, the only thing they will notice is a reduction in the bills. Not only do they save money on the call rate, as there is no minimum call charge and per second billing, but also there is an online billing platform that allows customers to track the calls and expenditure.
The additional good news is that this service is completely free all that’s needed is a copy of the latest bill – this will allow EAL to provide a costs savings proposal that can be emailed to the desktop within 24 hours. Once agreed, EAL will take care of all of the details.
As well as switching advice, EAL’s recommendations include help with new connections, new phone systems, and inbound marketing numbers (0800, 0845 etc) all aimed at helping businesses make further savings.
EAL maintains a transparent service and as such there are no fees involved from the client side as EAL receive an introduction from the new provider.
As a leading business gas and business electricity price comparison service, EAL have helped 1000’s of businesses save money on their business electricity and business gas bills, with up to 50% on their yearly costs!
On their site, besides finding great savings on telecoms businesses, you can compare prices on your current business electricity and business gas prices.
With an in-house team of telecoms specialists EAL can assist customers with any information or queries they may have.
If you’re a business, when it comes to monitoring your overheads it pays to check the small print very carefully if you are reviewing your business energy contracts, whether that’s business electricity or business gas. Some companies are happy to put this to a third party broker and so it pays to be aware of a few pitfalls and ask the right questions first.
Ask your broker:
If you have any doubts or queries then the first port of call should be the energy regulator – OFGEM who has published a list of ‘key questions’ that it recommends should be asked of business energy suppliers and brokers to improve chances of a fair deal.
Unfortunately, business electricity and business gas customers in the UK are bombarded with unsolicited cold calls on a daily basis.
This unscrupulous approach does not offer the business energy customer an impartial view on the market and the price offered is more often 20-30% above the current retail price for electricity or gas.
At Energy Advice Line we strongly advise customers to not accept these offers and follow our simple steps to ensure that they are not locked into an uncompetitive contract.
Join our cold calling campaign here, and spread the word to say 'no' to cold calling on business energy!