Small business guide to energy efficiency

Article posted

2nd Mar 2023

Read time

6-11 min read


Mollie Pinnington

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Smaller businesses are finding energy costs especially straining and most likely can’t survive another year of sky-high energy bills.

Your own energy prices should not be the only reason your business wants to reduce its energy expenditure. There is an environmental crisis currently going on in which all businesses need to try to reduce energy usage.

Whilst small businesses don’t typically use a lot of energy, they make up much of the UK’s business sector. This is why despite current issues everyone needs to make sure that they are reducing energy usage. 

 Why do small businesses tend to overlook energy savings?

Often small businesses see too many barriers to energy efficiency, even if they do see the value in making business changes the initial investment can sometimes seem too daunting or overwhelming.  

Smaller businesses will also tend not to have a department or anybody working in sustainability, which means they don’t have the resources to implement these changes.

However, some business owners don’t realize that energy efficiency for businesses is more accessible than ever. Nevertheless, we understand that small businesses and SMEs might not be able to see the potential their business could have by implementing efficient measures.

Whether your business holding back due to time, funding or limited knowledge, your business should be making sure they do its research into efficiency before completely taking it off its agenda.


Reducing usage in your building

Reducing how much energy your small business uses can be done straight away with very little investment.


Heating costs in a business can sometimes make up to 40% of the energy usage. This can sometimes be due to losing heat due to poor insulation or heating systems that increase expenses. Make sure that your building is fully insulated to reduce the amount of heat you are losing.  

You should also consider a smart thermostat to set the temperature in the office to a good working temperature. As well as this you could also consider heat pumps for your building rather than relying on a gas boiler.


If you are not using the most efficient lighting, you could be wasting a lot on your electricity bills. LED lights consume around 70% less electricity than incandescent bulbs. Although lightbulbs might not seem like they consume a lot of energy they can make a massive difference to your energy bills.

Office equipment 

Office equipment can often use a lot of energy without you realising from computers and monitors to fridges and kettles. To reduce the amount of energy office equipment is using you should urge employees to always turn something off after they have finished using it and make sure it is not left on after work time.


Energy-efficient equipment

To reduce your small businesses’ reliance on energy from fossil fuels and the grid you should consider investing in energy-efficient equipment. Although energy-efficient equipment requires an initial investment, the savings your business can make from this is going to reduce your business energy bills by a lot.

Solar panels

Solar panels are a great investment for businesses, they allow you to generate your own energy which reduces your consumption by up to 60% resulting in much cheaper electricity bills. This will overall cut your small business as you will not be subject to price volatility and price rises in the energy market.

 Find out more here.

Voltage optimisation

Voltage Optimisation is another type of energy-efficient equipment that you can have for your business. A Voltage Optimiser will reduce the amount of electricity you need to use electrical equipment. Most electrical equipment will use up a lot more volts than is needed to run it. The voltage optimiser will push the excess electricity back to the grid and it will not be used.  This could save your business up to 19% on energy bills.

Find out more here.  

Other ways to reduce your small business energy usage

Energy Audit- measure and reduce

Although there are quick and easy ways for your small business to start reducing energy usage, you should consider a plan to continue reducing consumption. Without measuring your carbon emissions and tracking them you won’t know which operations within your business need changing to reduce your emissions.

With our carbon reduction plans, we can measure your scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions and suggest the best energy efficiency practices for your business that are in line with your budget and business goals. See more about our plans here to get started.     

Energy-efficient operations

To become a sustainable small business, you will eventually need to ensure that all business operations are as energy efficient as possible. By doing an energy audit like mentioned above you will be able to improve all business operations to make sure each area of your business to make sure you are emitting the lowest amount of carbon possible.  

Avoid waste at all costs

Avoiding energy waste is not only going to reduce your consumption, but also ensure that you are not paying for energy that is not being used. Having effective efficiency practices plus infrastructure such as a voltage optimiser can help massively in this area.  

Make sure to keep your employees on track

 Keeping your employees engaged with your sustainability plans is going to determine how much of a success they are. Firstly, make sure employees can see the benefit that becoming more efficient is not only going to have on the business but also on their job. Without doing this it can be difficult to get them to follow efficacy measures.

Also, make sure employees know the importance of becoming a sustainable business, after all if you can’t make your own employees see the benefits of being sustainable how are you going to do the same for stakeholders and customers?

At Resolve Net Zero we believe employee understanding and engagement is critical to your plans. If you are struggling to get this message across our engagement experts can encourage your employees to take ownership and champion the net zero commitment.   

If you're ready to improve your energy efficiency whilst driving down energy bills then why not get in touch? With our carbon management plans we will give your business everything it needs to reduce consumption and maximise on savings. . Request a free quote now and start reducing your carbon footprint and energy bills today.