Business electricity rates may be lower than what residents pay, they also play a major role in how competitive any company can be in their industry. Smart Business Pittsburgh spoke with PPL EnergyPlus regional sales manager Robert Homa about why the present market represents an important opportunity for businesses to reign in their electricity bills.

Electricity rates have been falling in many regions of the country as the natural gas boom brings down costs for many power plants, allowing both utilities and retail electricity providers to offer lower electricity rates.

However, Homa noted that the electricity market can prove extremely variable with prices reacting strongly to spikes in the energy market as a whole. Because electricity providers can offer locked-in prices and a variety of different products, they can help make costs more predictable for businesses.

"To keep your business as a customer, a supplier should be well versed in market trends and should be providing you updates on energy prices and industry related news affecting the energy market and should be offering your business the tools to understand and apply these fluctuations in price to your benefit," Homa explained.

Across Pennsylvania, PAPowerSwitch reports that 36.5 percent of commercial customers and and 72.3 percent of industrial customers have chosen to switch electricity providers.