Energy companies are those suppliers that secure your rate. In other words, they determine how much you pay per kilowatt-hour (or kwh). They often offer options for energy savings. They are different from utilities, which own and operate wires, maintain service, and read meters to determine your business location’s energy consumption.
Businesses spend $60 billion annually in energy costs. Starting in the 1990s, the world of energy changed with deregulation in many states. Energy companies began to compete for business. Rather than having a single-source energy supplier, buyers could choose from multiple vendors. The competitive environment varies from state-to-state. This simple interactive map enables you to view the situation and options in your geography and the status of legislation that has an impact on energy providers and, ultimately, energy efficiency.
The vast majority (74 percent) of voters want the ability to choose among energy suppliers. Having a competitive marketplace ultimately benefits both commercial and residential users of electricity and other power sources.
Energy companies today are actively promoting energy efficiency. This may seem counter-intuitive. Why would a company want to offer solutions that encourage business to use less -- rather than more -- of their product? Companies that compete for energy business are motivated by several factors.
Consumers Are Savvier Than Ever About Energy Usage
The media has raised awareness of the high costs of energy, and the Internet now makes shopping for business savings opportunities simple. Both established and new energy providers must give these savvy buyers the answers they seek.
Like any brand today, energy companies must build credibility with their prospects and consumers to compel them to buy. To do this, they help educate businesses about energy options. For example, this Houston-based energy provider serves 19 states. They humanize their company, talking about the value they provide to communities, providing scholarships, and job opportunities. Although price is critical to many energy shoppers, some will also factor in company reputation, service, and options when making a final decision.
Consumers can easily compare energy companies to each other on a variety of factors. This list of the top 25 electric energy providers in the U.S. is vetted by the Better Business Bureau and highlights customer satisfaction metrics.
Sustainability is essential to many consumers and businesses today and they will choose a company that is committed to delivering greener solutions.
Other Benefits of Energy Efficiency
Some states have energy-efficiency resource standards or EERS. They vary from state-to-state and may require as much as a 2.5 percent annual reduction in energy usage. About half the states today have EERS.
Other laws and policies also reward (and penalize) energy companies for their sustainability practices. The energy industry is one of the most highly-regulated industries in the United States today.
Peak periods of heating and cooling put a strain on both energy companies and utilities. By promoting energy-efficiency, companies are less stressed and operating costs are lower.
More customers mean more dollars for innovation. In the long run, discounted energy plans are good for both the business user and the energy company. When the company has a steady, significant, and predictable cash flow, it can invest in improvements to their offerings, customer service, and marketing -- resulting in even more significant customer growth.
Big Brands and SMBs Must Make Informed Decisions
As you’re reviewing energy efficiency savings opportunities in your business, do your research and look at a combination of factors beyond price.
When investing in HVAC, lighting, equipment, and other necessary systems that use energy, talk to experts about the best energy company in your geography.
Shop around, look for discounts and rebates, and separate the facts from advertising hype. Like all businesses, energy companies want your business. Savvy buyers can enjoy significant savings over time and build more sustainable and healthier operations.
We’ve worked with businesses and energy companies to save customers as much as $200K annually. Can we help you?