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Spiralling energy costs have forced many suppliers to remove their tariffs What this means for you:
Spiralling energy costs have forced many suppliers to remove their tariffs
What this means for you:
We believe in always doing the right thing for our customers – which is why we’d rather tell you now,
so you don’t waste time quoting if we probably can’t help you.
Online gas and electricity tariffs do what they say on the tin; they allow you to manage your energy account through the internet.
This may be a gas-only account, an electricity account, or a dual fuel deal.
An online tariff means you manage your energy bills online. Your supplier might send bills via email, rather than post. Or you may access them by logging into your account on their website, or through an app.
There are many benefits to an online tariff. That said, they’re not for everyone. It’s important to be aware of the potential disadvantages too. Shopping around and comparing tariffs will help to make sure you end up with a deal that’s right for you.
Energy suppliers tend to like online tariffs. After all, having customers manage bills online helps limit administrative costs.
This means you could get a discount off your energy bill – simply by agreeing to take care of your bills online. The added benefit is that it’s better for the environment, as it cuts back on paperwork.
Online tariffs are a good option for tech-savvy energy customers. If you like the ease and simplicity of things like online banking, you’re bound to appreciate managing your energy bills online. If the supplier has an app, you can access your account on-the-move too.
There are other pros to being online. You may be able to more easily provide regular meter readings, avoiding issues with estimated energy bills. Your supplier might also send you alerts – for instance to tell you that your fixed-rate deal is ending. This will give you the chance to shop around before you’re put on their standard variable tariff, which tends to be more expensive.
You may gain access to special deals and discounts from your supplier, as well as money-saving tips and tools to help you cut your energy usage and bills. Some apps let you book things like boiler services too.
You should still be able to talk to the provider if you need to. Some providers also offer paper bills on request and online chat in case you have any queries. Online chat can help avoid being in a lengthy call queue, though you may still have to wait a short time for a response.
If you don’t want to pay bills online, options like direct debit and credit card payments are usually offered.
Online tariffs tend to be among the cheapest around. An alternative is a tariff available to both online and offline customers – people who choose to manage it online will get a discount.
Perhaps the main drawback of an online tariff is that it might not be suitable for customers who aren't confident in using tech.
An online tariff isn’t suitable if you struggle getting good WiFi at home. Or if you don’t have a device for accessing the web – like a laptop or smartphone.
This is one of the reasons why online tariffs have received bad press. They’re usually the most affordable deals, but some of the most vulnerable people can’t take advantage of them as they may not have internet access or a suitable device.
It’s also possible your supplier’s website might suffer technical issues. Or they might not run a slick online operation. That’s why you should consider customer reviews when comparing suppliers, as well as cost.
If you have an online tariff, you need to pay attention to supplier notifications. You wouldn’t want to miss information such as your introductory deal coming to an end. These notifications might come through by email or via the app.
GoCompare has partnered with Energylinx, part of the GoCompare Group, to help you switch energy. Energylinx Limited is registered in Scotland, registration number: SC244794, registered office: the e Centre, Cooperage Way, Business Village, Alloa, FK10 3LP.