Outfox the Market touts an “all the frills and low bills” approach as an energy provider. They have previously claimed that they bill their customers at wholesale prices, which nets them 0% profit on gas and electricity. It’s worth seeing if these bold claims still hold up under scrutiny.
This is an independent Outfox the Market review to help you decide if they are the company for you, based on the quality of their customer service and account management. You will also be able to find details on how their tariffs work so you can better compare them with other energy providers.
Outfox the Market Review
How competitive is Outfox the Market? We dive into the details of how they operate and what their customers say about them.
1. Customer Service
Energy companies live and die by the quality of their customer service and Outfox the Market is no exception. At The Switch, we see good customer service as focusing on response time, clarity and prevention. How does Outfox the Market treat its customers?
It would seem that in recent times, Outfox the Market reviews have been laudatory, particularly when it comes to customer service. Here is an example of one of the many 5-star reviews that have come in on Trustpilot in recent months:
Nadeem was very helpful and sorted out my issue very quickly. Great service as always.
Reviews like this, giving the top rating, which make up 65% of the 24,000 Outfox the Market reviews posted on Trustpilot, regularly praise specific call centre agents for the friendly and effective way in which they deal with customers' issues.
Customers seem particularly pleased with the way issues are dealt with on the provider's online chat service, which the above-mentioned Nadeem seems to man:
I wanted to change my personal details via the live chat. It was expertly and quickly dealt with by Nadeem.
It's reassuring to know that, for those of us who don't want to call up an agent only to waste time being put on hold, Outfox the Market offers an online chat service that actually works. It's important to know before signing up with a provider that you can easily resolve issues if they arise, as they can arise with any provider.
2. Tariffs and pricing
Initially, Outfox the Market touted itself as an energy market disruptor by ditching standing charges completely. They were replaced with a multi-tier membership fee which depended on your energy use profile (low, medium, high). This led them to claim, at the time, that there was no mark-up on their electricity and gas unit rates and that they were selling power at wholesale prices.
Standing charges vs membership feesA standing charge is a set fee that covers the cost of delivering energy to your home. It doesn’t change, no matter how much energy you use. A membership fee is a monthly charge that changes according to your total yearly energy use.
Sometime during the second half of 2018, Outfox the Market quietly dropped the membership fee structure and went with the industry standard of unit rates and standing charges for Outfox the Market tariffs, also enacting four price increases in six months. This was not well-received, and the company became very unpopular, receiving a swathe of bad reviews online.
Outfox the Market tariffs increased by 40% in price during the colder months this period, its new scheme allocating direct debit amounts unequally between winter and summer months. Since then, however, the provider seems to have turned a corner and brought its pricing right down to seriously competitive rates.
This a recent comparison between Outfox the Market and some leading green energy providers. We used a standard example for a family of four living in London with average electricity and gas consumption (3,100kWh for electric and 12,500kWh for natural gas):
|Outfox the Market||OVO Energy||Tonik Energy||Octopus Energy|
|Average cost per year for 3 bed house in London||£851.88||£1110||£1175||£946|
Prices correct as of November 2020
Outfox the Market is much cheaper than Ovo and Tonik, and even leaves Octopus trailing. All of these have good reputations for pricing and customer service, but Outfox the Market tariffs seem to be able stand up to the best of them. We would say it's definitely worth considering them.
3. Our verdict
Outfox the Market is more than competitive on the pricing front at the moment, and its customer service seems to have come on leaps on bounds. There are large numbers of customers who are happy with the way they have been treated, and a quick comparison with other green providers shows that there are few who better them for price.
To talk to a real human being about whether you should switch, give one of our energy experts a call on 020 3608 4293 today.
Outfox the Market Login and Hero Hub
With Outfox the Market, you have access to an online account, called the Hero Hub, which offers customers the following features from their desktop or laptop:
- Track usage
- See details of past usage/bills
- Check your account balance
- Submit meter readings
- Get help taking your supply with you when you move home
Unlike other energy suppliers, Outfox the Market does not offer discounts to incentivise customers to go ‘online only’ and lighten the load for customer service.
Additionally, several customers have reported being unable to access their online account for extended periods of time, sometimes for months at a time!
In the past, one concerning issue connected to the Hero Hub relates to meter readings. Multiple reports surfaced in online reviews with a worrying common thread, namely Outfox the Market not taking submitted readings into account in a timely manner.
Outfox the Market Tariffs
Outfox the Market offers both fixed and variable tariffs for electricity and gas:
- One Green Flex 5.0 (variable)
- Fix’d 20 (12m) (fixed 12 months)
- Fix’d for 9 (fixed for 9 months)
- Fix’d for Six (fixed for 6 months)
Here’s the breakdown of the 12 month Fix’d 20 tariff to give you an idea of the pricing of their cheapest tariff:
|Fix’d 20 (Electricity)||Fix’d 20 (Gas)|
|Type of tariff||Fixed||Fixed|
|Duration||12 months||12 months|
|Unit rate||13.694p per kWh||2.382p per kWh|
|Standing charge||19.83p per day||26.44p per day|
As you can see, not only are Outfox the Market tariffs extremely reasonable in terms of price, they also don't charge exit fees, so you're free to leave whenever you want.
Next, let’s check where Outfox the Market sources its energy from. At the moment, Outfox the Market partners with DONG Energy to source all of their renewable electricity. On their front page, the company gives the impression of 100% green electricity with a wind turbine graphic.
On the How it works page, Outfox the Market proclaims “100% Wind electricity - produced in the UK for you”. However, their FAQs tell a different story where they “guarantee 100% of the electricity we supply is generated from sustainable and renewable sources such as wind, Bio thermal, Solar and other sources, much of which is generated right here in the UK.”
While no information is given regarding their natural gas mix, you can find out more about renewable sources for electricity:
Did you know?
As with other suppliers providing 100% renewable electricity, Outfox the Market customers receive the same electricity from the National Grid - a common mix of electricity sourced from renewable and non-renewable sources. However, Outfox the Market guarantee to generate or buy and put back an equal amount into the grid that was renewably-sourced.
As renewable energy generation and usage increases in the future, the percentage of renewable electricity customers receive from the grid will increase. For this reason, Outfox the Market are promoting the increase in renewable electricity for the UK.
Outfox the Market smart meter
Outfox the Market does not offer smart meters to its customers at present, meaning that if you have one it will revert to a standard meter once you switch and you'll have to provide monthly readings.
This will put off users who have got used to the convenience of relying on their smart meter, but those for whom this is a deal-breaker are advised to keep an eye on developments with Outfox the Market smart meters, as the provider has voiced its commitment to rolling out the technology in accordance with government guidelines in the near future.
Looking for a provider that offers smart meters?Our energy experts can set you up with a smart meter tariff hassle-free. Call 020 3608 4293 today to find out more
Warm Home Discount
Unfortunately, Outfox the Market does not offer the Warm Home Discount. The scheme is a government initiative offering a £140 discount to people at risk of energy poverty. If you fall into the Core Group, you may have been contacted by the government and been told that the amount will be deducted from a future bill automatically, but those who may qualify under the Broader Group are not able to apply through Outfox the Market.
Might it be worth switching anyway?It's worth considering that you may save more than the £140 you would receive with the discount by switching to Outfox the Market, and this is something you should consider when you think about switching. Give us a call on 020 3608 4293 to find out if this is the case.
Outfox the Market Phone Number
Outfox the Market make it slightly tricky to get in touch with their customer service team by phone. They prefer customers to email or use the web chat feature on their website. With some digging, however, we found the following Outfox the Market phone number.
|Department||Outfox the Market Phone Number||Opening hours|
|General inquiries||0800 103 2702||Monday to Thursday, 8:30am to 7pm;
Fridays, 8.30am to 5pm;
Saturdays, 9am to 2pm
If you would rather not wait to speak with someone over the phone, you can also email Outfox the Market at email@example.com. If, however, you want to speak with a real person about switching without having to wait, your best bet is to call one of our energy experts on 020 3608 4293.
Looking for a number to use in case of an emergency?Outfox the Market customers, or indeed customers of any supplier, should report gas emergencies by calling 0800 111 999, which is a 24-hour emergency line for customers of any provider. To report a power cut, call 105.