UK Energy Providers - Digital Marketing Benchmark Report, Q2 2024

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The Q2 2024 benchmarking report for UK energy providers has just been published. Learn how the top 11 UK energy providers perform across the digital space.

The latest Q2 2024 benchmarking report for UK energy providers has just been published. It covers the largest 11 national Energy providers, including British Gas, EDF, E.ON, ScottishPower, OVO Energy, Octopus Energy, Utility Warehouse, Shell Energy, npower Business Solutions, SSE Renewables, and Utilita Energy.

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The research gives an inside track on who is winning the biggest share of voice online, and quantifies the gaps, risks and missed opportunities for other energy providers to win brand exposure, drive online views, and generate new customer enquiries. The report highlights quick wins that will improve enquiries from your online strategy and identifies the barriers that may be reducing your site’s ability to optimise digital performance.

To see a preview and contents page of the Q2 report, click here. To get a copy of the full report and the key takeaways, please complete the enquiry form or schedule a call. Energy Providers - COVER-1


For a glance into just 6 of the metrics we evaluated these top 11 energy providers on, check out our quick-look table below; Energy Providers W&L June24

Continue reading for further detail on this quarter's top and poorest-performing energy providers, or request a copy of the report for the full review.

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What The Industry Research Report Covers

The 70+ pages of research benchmarks each site based on 50+ metrics and indicators of successful digital strategy, including organic visibility, domain authority, paid media ads, conversion performance, technical performance, site speed, universal search, content, social ads, accessibility, and mobile performance.  

Driving Optimal ROAS from Paid Media Channels

Some of the leading players in the space are high spenders on paid media channels such as Google, Bing & Facebook - but have a poor or sub-optimal conversion improvement strategy. Without an optimised, sophisticated conversion strategy that maximises the conversion rate, the return on investment is unsustainable or will underperform. Scaling spend on paid media is not achievable unless the conversion rate delivers optimal performance in the sector. Some in the space have paid media spend levels from 30k+ per month but dedicate minimal resources and budgets to conversion testing.  Given the cost per clicks on ad networks will continue to rise, we recommend spending at least 10% of your paid media budget on ongoing conversion optimisation testing schedules to ensure your paid media ROI maintains long-term viability, competitive advantage, and sustainability.

Technical Website Compliance

Savvy digital marketers know that having a technically sound website is an essential component of a successful fully integrated digital strategy - plus a site capable of maximising conversion performance. Energy providers will want to ensure key information, such as rates and quote generators, are clearly signposted and not blocked off by broken links.

Site Speed & Conversion Rate Performance

When 62% of consumers are less likely to convert if they have a negative mobile site experience, ensuring that your site is quick and easy to load makes a significant improvement on your overall conversion rates. As with technical site compliance, energy providers will want to ensure their site is quick to use and frustration-free for any visitors, to indicate a high level of service.

For Q2 2024, the mobile site speed ranged between 63 and 14, with Shell Energy reporting the highest site speed and npower Business Solutions seeing the lowest site speed. Having taken a look at npower Business Solutions’ mobile website, it should adopt lazy loading. Website plugins are a quick and easy way for companies to incorporate this.

Building Competitive Advantage with Domain Authority

Domain authority is an essential metric for measuring the effectiveness of SEO performance, and helps create a reliable overall gauge of how effective your site is at achieving organic traffic, i.e. ‘free’ traffic that isn’t gained through sponsored ads. Energy providers would benefit from engaging with a digital PR specialist, who can identify opportunities to reclaim backlinks, and create engaging content that national press will want to share.

A ‘good’ DA really comes down to how your competitors are performing, however, it’s generally considered average between 40 and 50, good between 50 and 60, and excellent above 60. The DA for this quarter ranged between 78 and 52, with npower Business Solutions reporting the lowest DA score. This energy provider also received the fewest backlinks, and it should look for ways to increase its backlinks to help with its DA score. For example, it should focus on creating content that’s linkable by offering knowledgeable information and content type that’s easily sharable and provides value to their audience.

Organic Performance – Mobile & Desktop

A strong organic performance is strategically important as it ensures your site ranks above competitors for key, transactional keywords. When 93% of your customers won’t go past the first page of Google, your absence or lack of targeting for essential keywords will cost you conversions. Fluctuating energy prices will have consumers shopping around to try and identify the best price. Therefore, energy providers must have a strong organic strategy to capitalise on this restless consumer base.

npower Business Solutions reported a 72% loss in organic traffic on mobile, while it saw a 57% loss in organic traffic on desktop. This energy provider should focus on making its website mobile-friendly, which means user smaller sections of text to make content easily readable on a smaller screen, adding lists and bullet points to increase the amount of white space, and using shorter titles to refrain from lines of large text. This will help to encourage their audience to visit their website on mobile more.

Universal Search Opportunity

Google Universal Search Results is an evolving opportunity to make your pages visible on a SERP (Search Engine Results Page). Universal results often appear before traditional listings and are eye-catching for users. Universal search results refer to rankings on a SERP that are not the traditional ‘blue line’ Google link, and a site can appear for universal search results without being strong in standard rankings. Optimising for 'people also ask' results is a great way to build brand awareness and confidence directly from the SERP, as energy providers can provide much-needed answers before users have set virtual foot on their site

British Gas remains at the top of the leaderboard for the most Universal Search results (a total of 21,373 this quarter), reporting most of these findings from ‘people also ask’.

The Longtail Keyword Opportunity

Longtail keywords are often considered high intent and potentially more likely to convert as a searcher is being more specific. Optimising for longtail keywords also puts your content strategy in a strong position to rank for brand new search terms as they enter Google’s index. Energy suppliers will want to optimise for high-conversion potential keywords and phrases, including terms like 'switch energy provider' and 'new energy customer offers'.

British Gas still ranks for the most longtail keyword appearances. Meanwhile, SSE Renewables reports the fewest appearances. It’s important that brands adopt a longtail keyword strategy to increase their organic traffic, and this energy provider should assess the phrases they use to ensure they’re incorporating ones that their target audience type into search engines.

Facebook Adverts

With the number of Facebook users in the United Kingdom (UK) hitting over 44 million users in 2023, it is not surprising that companies have jumped at the opportunity to advertise on the social media platform. Facebook’s UK digital advertising revenue has been estimated to have breached 2.6b GB pounds in 2019.

We’ve included 3 examples of OVO Energy’s sponsored Facebook posts. This energy provider should use imagery that entices scrollers and avoid a white-background image, which can seem corporate and sales-y.

Energy Providers - Facebook-1

Top Social Shares & Content

When it comes to social media and on-site content strategies, it is important to release content that has a longer shelf life. An article is considered 'Evergreen' if it has maintained its relevancy to an audience for longer. It's great for your brand engagement, but great for Google too, who will recognise content which achieves traffic over a long period of time. Content such as energy-saving tips and advice will be engaging, topical, and most likely to be shared by social media users.

Utilita reported the highest total engagement rate. It’s important that brands assess this criteria to ensure that their marketing strategies are working. A company could have millions of followers, but if their audience aren’t interacting with their content, it’s an indication that they’re disinterested.

Website Readability & Accessibility

20% of people in the UK have a disability – 2 million of which are people living with sight loss. In addition, 1 in 12 men and 1 in 200 women have some degree of colour vision deficiency. When websites are not designed to meet these needs, brands lose customer interest as they turn elsewhere. As energy is an essential need for any customer, energy providers must ensure their sites are universally accessible.

In our previous audit, npower Business Solutions reported 101 accessibility alerts, which they’ve slightly reduced to 99 — an improvement considering this figure remained the same for the past two quarters. Though, it should still assess redundant title text and missing meta descriptions. This quarter, the energy provider to watch is EDF, which flagged 301 alerts. When brands have accessibility alerts, they risk negatively impacting the user experience for those using a screen reader.


To get a copy of the full report, please complete the enquiry form. If you want to talk to us about accelerating your digital performance, please call us on 01543 410014 or schedule a call with Mike Movassaghi.

Photo by Federico Beccari on Unsplash

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