When it comes to lowering your electricity bills, the size – and type – of your business really do matter. While there are plenty of useful principles you should follow, it pays to look for solutions specific to how your business uses energy. As well as upping your green credentials and reducing your environmental footprint, being more energy efficient makes good business sense. A 20% reduction in your energy bill could equate to the same benefit on your bottom line as a 5% increase in sales, according to the Carbon Trust. No two businesses are the same. From retail to manufacturing, let’s look at how to reduce your energy bills with tips tailored to different types of business.
 

How can I save on my business energy use?

Reducing your energy spend is one of the easiest ways to increase your business profits.

 

Energy saving for retailers

Lighting typically accounts for 25% of an organisation’s energy bills. In retail, where bold, attractive lighting is often used to draw in customers, there are plenty of ways to bring down your electricity consumption without compromising on profit.

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Energy saving for retailers

You could switch to lower lighting for cleaning, restocking and security outside of opening hours, for instance. 

Investing in movement detectors, daylight sensors and time switches will also help to bring down unnecessary energy consumption. It can all add up: installing energy efficient lighting alone could bring your bills down by 15%

If your business uses refrigeration, keep the doors closed as much as possible and regularly defrost and clean cold units, checking that the seals, condensers and evaporators are clean and intact. Pay attention to the energy rating when buying new units – AA++ fridges will give you the lowest bills.

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Energy saving for offices

Here’s the headline: an energy efficient office can save around 65% on its energy bills.

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Energy saving for offices

It may sound obvious, but have you thought about how many of your staff power down IT equipment overnight? It could save you up to £35 a year per desk. Across a busy workspace, that alone could really add up.

Turning down the heating by just 1oC can cut a typical office’s energy consumption by 8%, as well as saving you the energy equivalent of printing 40 million sides of A4.

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Energy saving for hospitality businesses

The average restaurant spends 40% of their energy on storing and preparing food, with a further 33% spent on heating and hot water.

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Energy saving for hospitality businesses

Spray hoses use less water than conventional taps – and it’s worth tackling any leaks or drips as quickly as possible. Insulating hot water pipes could help to reduce any heat loss, and ‘zoned’ heating depending on which rooms are most in use could add up to a bigger difference when your bill arrives. The Carbon Trust recommends turning your thermostat to:

  • 19-21°C in bedrooms and corridors
  • 20-22°C in bars and waiting rooms
  • 22-24°C in restaurants
  • 16-18°C in kitchens and laundries.

Look up: a building can lose 22% of its heat through a poorly insulated roof. 

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Energy saving for manufacturers

Manufacturing can be particularly energy-intensive. For example, a 20% reduction in motor speeds can reduce energy consumption by up to 50%

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Energy saving for manufacturers

Install variable-speed drives in fans and pumps, and invest in efficient motors to qualify for tax relief under the Enhanced Capital Allowance (ECA).

If you use compressed air, reducing the pressure by just one bar could cut your energy consumption by 7%. Leaving a compressor on standby when not in use can use around 70% of its full power.

Around 12% of a typical manufacturer’s energy bills go on heating their premises. Regularly servicing your boilers, checking the insulation on water pipes and recirculating any heat from production lines could make a significant difference.

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Why saving energy makes sense

Reducing your energy consumption is a win for everyone. It’ll save you money, enhance your reputation with customers, and help the global fight against climate change. The tips above give just a flavour of what can be achieved if you focus on making changes, from switching light bulbs to investing in more efficient equipment. 

Next Steps

Choosing the right energy supplier

The average UK SME spends £5,000 a year on mains electricity and around £4,000 on gas, according to Ofgem. That’s the equivalent of 10% of a small business’ running costs, making it well worth finding the right contract. 

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What am I actually paying for on my energy bill?

There are plenty of factors that contribute towards gas and electricity costs. Government policies, the weather, and global events all play their part in shaping how your energy provider decides what to charge. 

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Hudson Energy

Hudson Energy UK is working with Informi to enable businesses to receive outstanding service and support with their energy needs and to help them to reduce costs.

Founded in 2002, Hudson Energy is a leading supplier of electricity and gas, dedicated to bringing better gr...

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