So Energy is a relatively small energy firm. Its founders say it has customer service at its heart and is committed to selling competitive tariffs.
Set-up in 2015, it now has more than 200,000 customers and says it's growing fast.
So Energy sells only 100% renewable electricity tariffs and gives customers a say in where it sources the electricity from - you can use an online poll to vote for wind, solar, hydro or biomass on So Energy's website.
So Energy offers tariffs targeted at customers who want to pay by monthly direct debit. It does not currently offer a prepayment meter option.
This small firm promises that its fixed-rate tariffs will always be among the best deals available.
So Energy came sixth out of 35 energy companies in our poll of 7,460 members of the public. The annual Which? customer survey is independent and one of the broadest views of energy firms available.
Customer feedback proves that there's lots to like about So Energy, though it didn't quite meet our tough criteria to be a Which? Recommended Provider again this year.
The accuracy of its bills gained So Energy its best star rating in our survey, where it also compared well with other firms for value for money and how clear its bills are.
Below, we show the breakdown of So Energy’s score from our latest survey. Scroll down to see what customers think of its prices and bills.
So Energy has scored consistently highly in the few years it has been included in our survey. This year was no exception, with good ratings across all the areas of its service we asked customers about.
They were particularly positive about the accuracy of its bills, which gained a five-star rating.
Though it scored highly in the customer survey, So Energy's below-average result in our assessment of its performance (including customer waiting times - see below) means that it did not meet the requirements to be a Which? Recommended Provider this year.
Some 83% of So Energy customers in our survey said it was good or excellent value for money. While this isn’t the highest proportion across suppliers, only one achieved a full five stars for value for money this year.
It seems to be very good value.
Such positive feedback is likely to be bolstered by So Energy’s ‘low price commitment’, which promises that its fixed-rate tariffs will always be among the most competitively priced – and it monitors prices daily.
Customers signing up to tariffs between October and March may have ‘seasonal payments’. This means you pay 25% more in winter months and 25% less in the summer. You can switch to equal monthly payments if you prefer.
So Energy's best star rating was for the accuracy of its bills. It scored the full five stars and was among eight suppliers to do so. It also equalled the highest-rated firms for having clear bills - the worst firms gained just two stars here.
Bills are clear and easy to read and it's much cheaper than my previous supplier.
Very few customers in our survey reported problems with So Energy, with 88% saying they had no issues in the last year. This tallies with its published complaints data showing it received three or fewer complaints per 1,000 customers in the first half of 2020. The worst firms received more than four times that many.
Though it receives few complaints, So Energy isn't the fastest to resolve them. Less than half of its complaints were solved within two days at the start of 2020, while the best firms managed to solve more than 80%.
We received too few responses from customers to calculate an overall rating for So Energy's customer service, however.
I have never needed to complain.
In 2019, So Energy was the fastest firm both to answer the phone and respond to emails in our energy companies' call waiting times investigation. It took a mere 38 seconds on average.
Disappointingly, its call waiting times were significantly longer when we carried out our annual snapshot investigation in September and October 2020. This time, the median average time from dialling to speaking to a human was nearly 17 minutes (16 minutes 52 seconds).
The average time waiting across all the 31 companies we called was 5 minutes and 57 seconds; the fastest firm, Together Energy, took just 51 seconds.
So Energy also took much longer than last year to respond to emails: 3 days 7 hours 31 minutes, on average. Last year it responded in an average of 29 minutes. The slowest company, , took nearly five days but the fastest, , only 45 minutes.
As a result, So Energy's score for performance (which also includes complaints data) was not high enough for it to quality as a Which? Recommended Provider.
So Energy doesn’t currently cater for prepayment meters, although it will take customers on Economy 7 meters.
Pros: Customers praise its accurate bills and consider it good value for money
Cons: Doesn't supply prepayment meters; slow to answer the phone in our snapshot investigation
No, So Energy does not accept customers with prepayment meters at the moment.
So Energy lets customers vote for where they want it to buy energy from (out of solar, wind, hydro or biomass) using an online polling system.
March: So Energy is paying 10,500 of its customers a total of £78,480 after overcharging them when they switched supplier or tariff between 2013 and 2020. It was one of 18 energy firms found by regulator Ofgem to have failed to uphold these rules. Over 1 million customers were affected.
So Energy's affected customers will receive £7.46 each, on average.