Energy Market Research & Utility Market Research

Operators in the energy and utilities sector face a “perfect storm” of challenges. Heightened regulation, increased competition from new entrants and the imperative to treat customers fairly all mean that suppliers have to become smarter in how they operate.

While the needs of the consumer energy and utility users have been intensively researched, many suppliers still have substantial gaps in their knowledge when it comes to business markets. B2B International has a dedicated energy and utility market research team, specialising in better understanding these buyers.

 

Energy & Utilities Markets We Research

Receiving and paying a bill is often the sum total of many B2B buyers' experience with retail suppliers. However, lying behind this seemingly simple relationship are complex trading arrangements, pricing mechanisms and distribution networks.

B2B International understands this from our deep experience across the entire energy and utilities value chain – from generators and distribution network operators, through to energy brokers and end users. Below, we summarise just some of the specific markets we have recently researched:

Large, I&C energy users
Large, I&C energy users

Energy market research studies addressing:

  • Users of half-hourly (HH) electricity meters, large gas users and those on flexible energy purchasing arrangements
  • Topics covered include: Energy efficiency services, impact of non-supply charges, micro- and on-site generation, energy supply and performance contracting

e.onHoneywell

SME energy users
SME energy users
  • Smaller business users of energy – including SoHos and those operating from home premises
  • Topics covered include: Customer journey and service design, loyalty and churn research, brand tracking, pricing, market opportunities for non-supply propositions, the role of brokers

npower

Industrial and B2B water users
Industrial and B2B water users

Utility market research studies addressing:

  • B2B water users – ranging from process industries through to small businesses
  • Topics covered include: Customer service and problem resolution, bill design, expected impact of market de-regulation

Yorkshire WaterThames Water

LPG, LNG, Bulk and Cylinder Gas
LPG, LNG, Bulk and Cylinder Gas
  • Major business users of LPG, LNG and cylinder gas, including farmers, fork-lift truck operators, catering and hospitality, welders and other industrial buyers

Flo GasBOC

Distributed energy and energy solutions opportunities
Distributed energy and energy solutions opportunities

Energy markets are undergoing fundamental change: Moving from highly centralised generation to more localised and distributed energy systems. We’ve helped several of our clients to understand these new opportunities:

  • Research into the requirements from grid and distribution network operators
  • Understanding b2b energy buyers’ awareness and consideration of new energy solution opportunities
  • Sizing the market for energy services and solutions
  • Product and proposition development for energy solutions packages targeted at business and municipal customers

e.on

Renewable energy generation
Renewable energy generation
  • Research in the solar, onshore & offshore wind and hydroelectricity markets
  • Target audiences: Asset owners, operators and managers; Financiers and investors; Equipment OEMs; Providers of operations and maintenance (O&M) services;
  • Many have been global studies covering Asia, Europe, Africa and Americas

VestasITT

Energy markets and trading
Energy markets and trading
  • Suppliers and users of energy market insight and information providers

Wood MackenzieS&P Global

 

3 Ways B2B International Can Help

 
We Can Reach And Engage The Target Audience
We know that energy and utilities isn’t top of the agenda for many businesspeople: Our in-house fieldwork teams are the best in the industry at getting B2B decision-makers to "open up".
 
We Share Best Practice From Other Industries
Because we work across many industries, we can advise on best practices from other sectors – for instance, how digital servicing models have been implemented in other markets.
 
We Understand The Complexity Of Your Industry
We are very familiar with the dynamics of utilities and energy markets and so can "hit the ground running" without needing to be briefed on terminology or other fundamentals.
 

Types Of Projects We Can Help With

We deliver utility and energy market research studies that are tailored for your organisation’s needs. We don’t produce off-the-shelf reports that your competitors can benefit from, giving you maximum competitive advantage.

Below we summarise some examples of the types of studies we undertake:
Customer loyalty and retention research
Customer loyalty and retention research

Fixing the “leaky bucket” and reducing churn through improved customer experience is almost always less than the cost of new acquisition – particularly in business markets. We can help you to identify the parts of the customer experience that need addressing most.

Read more:

Lost customer research

Voice of the customer research

  • NPS (Net Promoter Score) studies
  • Customer exit research
  • Market-wide satisfaction trackers and benchmarking surveys
  • Touchpoint-based and event-driven surveys
  • Building case and action management systems
Understanding the customer journey
Understanding the customer journey

How do buyers choose a supplier? How would customers prefer to be served – on the phone, online or through a broker? What problems arise when customers are “on-boarded” as a new customer? We can help with specific questions like these through “deep-dives” into specific parts of your customer journey.

Read more:

Customer journey research

B2B decision journey research

  • Quote and bill design research
  • Customer decision journey research
  • New customer research
  • Renewal journey studies
B2B customer segmentation and value management
B2B customer segmentation and value management

Business customers are as diverse as consumers – yet relatively few energy and utility suppliers have implemented a sophisticated segmentation strategy. We can assist you to identify and implement a segmentation framework that helps you to unlock latent customer value, while being practical to implement.

Read more:

Segmentation research

  • Market segmentation research
  • B2B buyer persona research
  • Segmentation implementation consultancy services
Exploring new, non-supply propositions
Exploring new, non-supply propositions

As basic supply of energy and utilities becomes more commoditised and subject to the vagaries of the market, suppliers are looking to diversify into new or adjacent offerings. We can help by assessing businesses’ appetite for new solutions such as energy auditing, re-fits and energy management.

Read more:

Product and proposition research

  • Ideation research
  • Concept screening and validation
  • Price testing and bundling
  • Marketing collateral testing
  • Value proposition (CVP) development
 

Audiences We Can Help You To Access

Effective research begins with speaking to the correct people. As a B2B research specialist, our forte is in accessing relevant decision-makers and influencers. Below are just some of the audiences we can help you to reach:
Utilities & Energy Buyers
  • Heads of utilities / Utility and energy managers
  • Sustainability / environmental managers
  • Facilities managers, estates managers
  • Procurement
  • Owner operators / directors
  • Accounts and finance staff
Consultants, TPIs and Traders
  • Energy brokers, consultants and intermediaries (TPIs)
  • Energy trading and pricing professionals
Energy Generators
  • Power plant managers
  • Technicians and engineers
  • Construction consultants, FEED contractors and EPCs
  • Original equipment manufacturers (OEMs)
 

Our Experience in Energy Market Research

We’ve carried out projects spanning the entire energy and utilities sector. To find out more about the areas we’ve researched and the clients we’ve helped, click the link below to view the graphic.

Energy Market Research / Utility Market Research

 
Learn how our energy and utilities market research can help your business