How to make your business more energy efficient

Increasing demand and supply issues have led to an energy crisis in the UK, with UK businesses struggling to keep up with quickly rising energy costs and significantly increased commercial energy bills.

Up to August 2022, small businesses are estimated to have experienced a 424% rise in gas costs and a 349% increase in electricity since February 2021, according to the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB).

Now could be the perfect time to rethink your business's energy usage and how it plays a role in your operations.

There are ways to reduce commercial energy bills from workspace to equipment while making your business more energy efficient.

So, where do you start?

Where can I find help?

There are various forms of help to make your business more energy-efficient and reduce your business energy costs.

Financial help

Several grants, schemes, and loans are available to help businesses struggling to pay their commercial energy bills.

Typically, these are designed to help businesses develop sustainable initiatives, put energy efficiency measures in place, and help cover the upfront costs when investing in energy-efficient equipment.

You can search the GOV.UK business finance and support finder, or ask your local council if they provide any funding.

Depending on what initiatives you're working on, your business may also be eligible for business innovation funding.


Online advice is available for businesses on how to reduce energy costs and consumption from trusted, reputable sources.

The Energy Saving Trust provides support and advice for businesses working towards energy-efficient futures, and The National Energy Foundation YouGov website offers free, independent advice about efficient energy usage.

To keep up with energy usage and efficiency news, you could check out

What to do if you can't afford your commercial energy bill

Support is available for businesses struggling to pay their energy bill.

Energy suppliers must work with you to find a solution, so negotiation is key – a deal that works for both of you can be highly beneficial.

Payment plans are a standard option, with many energy providers prepared to split the cost over a longer period to ensure they receive monies owed.

Switching energy providers

Switching energy providers for a cheaper option could be an easy way to reduce your commercial energy bills.

Switching can take as little as a few weeks, and with so many different tariffs and contracts on the market, it could be worth researching the deals available.

Before switching energy providers, it can be worth considering:

  • if the cheapest deal is the best deal for your business, for example, are there restrictions on energy usage?
  • are there any additional perks offered by an energy provider, such as free energy management software?
  • the financial penalties levied for exiting your contract early.

How to make your business more energy efficient

Conduct an energy audit

Setting energy reduction goals and measuring progress can be difficult if you don't know your starting point.

Conducting an energy audit will help you identify how your business uses energy and indicate ways you may be able to make your workplace more energy efficient.

Only use energy-efficient office equipment

Buying and using office equipment with good energy ratings can help reduce energy costs so the lower their energy consumption, the better their efficiency.

While more energy-efficient appliances may cost more, the money saved on reduced energy consumption means you could see a return on investment sooner rather than later.

Make sure your workspace is properly insulated

Typically, two-thirds of heat in an office building is lost through the building fabric, so effective insulation is key to keeping the heat in and bills as low as possible.

Making sure your workspace is well insulated and keeping doors and windows closed when heating or air conditioning is running are simple measures to improve energy efficiency.

Use a programmable thermostat

A programmable thermostat can automatically regulate the temperature in your workspaces according to the rules you set.

You could set it to turn the heat up before everyone arrives and turn it off when staff leave at the end of the day and over the weekend.

Switch your lightbulbs to LEDs

Simple but effective.

LED lightbulbs have a 15-year lifespan and are more energy efficient than standard halogen bulbs, meaning you'll save money on your energy bills and buying replacement bulbs.

Lighting initiatives can have a short ROI, and with LED bulbs, an affordable energy solution, you can enjoy the money-saving benefits faster.

Reference to any organisation, business and event on this page does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation from the British Business Bank or the UK Government. Whilst we make reasonable efforts to keep the information on this page up to date, we do not guarantee or warrant (implied or otherwise) that it is current, accurate or complete. The information is intended for general information purposes only and does not take into account your personal situation, nor does it constitute legal, financial, tax or other professional advice. You should always consider whether the information is applicable to your particular circumstances and, where appropriate, seek professional or specialist advice or support.

Green Decoder

Featuring a glossary of sustainable terms curated in partnership with the Nottingham Business School, Nottingham Trent University, our green decoder is helping smaller businesses decipher the terminology surrounding decarbonisation.

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