Late last month it was announced that in July energy prices are finally set to fall, albeit by a relatively small amount, leaving bills far higher than they were before the onset of the energy crisis in October 2021. However, the prospect of some movement towards lower bills may prompt more consumers to start looking around for new deals. This in turn creates opportunities for those in energy and related sectors to actively promote new offers to consumers
GB TGI data reveals that the proportion of consumers who use a gas or electricity supplier who anticipate switching supplier in the next 12 months fell late last year as prices remained stubbornly high. Back in April 2022, 16% of these consumers intended to switch electricity supplier, but by October this was down to 7%.
However, in the early part of this year the figure began to rise again, reaching 11% in March for switching electricity. The pattern for gas switching intention is broadly similar.
The prompt behind looking for a switch is most likely less to do with lowered prices – which were not on the horizon earlier this year – but fundamental worries about the affordability of energy bills.
TGI shows that the proportion of energy utility users who claim that their energy bills have become too expensive for them to afford was broadly flat over the 12 months up to the first quarter of this year, but crept up from 40% of energy supplier users in January to 48% by March.
Those in the TGI lifestage group ‘Playschool Parents’ (live with son/daughter and youngest child aged 0-4) are particularly likely to be looking to switch gas or electricity supplier compared to the average energy supplier user. TGI reveals they are 51% more likely to do so. This is an audience likely to be under great financial pressure anyway by dint of being relatively young and with young children.
Attitudes with which those intending to switch energy supplier are most likely to engage reveal a predilection towards a variety of media and promotional activity, including magazines, TV sponsorship and celebrity influence.