What are the best SEG rates?

Exporting-to-the-grid
Last updated on 7 May 20249 min read

Here are the best export tariffs you can use to earn money from the excess solar electricity you send to the grid.

Photo of solar panel writer Josh Jackman against blank background

Written byJosh Jackman

Five yellow rectangles in the style of a bar chart on the left of the image, with a yellow pound sign on the right, set against a blue-yellow background with an electricity pylon

🐙 The best export tariff is the Intelligent Octopus Flux tariff

💷 ScottishPower’s 12p per kWh tariff is the best option with no strings

🤝 Companies give the highest rates to their own customers

You can make money from sending your excess solar electricity to the grid – but to get the highest returns possible, you have to pick the right rate for your home.

There are dozens of tariffs with different requirements, and even the best ones are often only the right choice for certain households. In this guide, we’ll run through the best export rates for the different types of solar homes.

To qualify for any of these tariffs, you’ll need a smart meter and documents to prove your solar installation is certified. However, you can access these tariffs regardless of whether you've paid the upfront cost of solar panels or opted for a solar subscription.

If you would like to see the savings you could get from a solar & battery system, just answer a few quick questions below, and we’ll provide an estimate.

What are the best Smart Export Guarantee rates?

The best overall export tariff is Intelligent Octopus Flux.

With this tariff, customers who choose Octopus as their energy supplier can typically gain 30.31p for every kWh (kilowatt-hour) of solar electricity they export between 4pm and 7pm, and 22.73p per kWh at all other times.

After that, it's standard Octopus Flux, which again pays two different rates at off-peak and peak times, averaging out at 21p per kWh.

Both of these rates are significantly better than the next best tariffs, which are fixed 20p per kWh offerings from OVO, Good Energy, and So Energy.

If you don’t want to switch your energy supplier, your best choice is ScottishPower’s SmartGen tariff, which currently pays all solar generators 12p per kWh.

Provider Name of tariff Rate (p/kWh) Need to be a customer?
Octopus Intelligent Octopus Flux 27* Yes
Octopus Octopus Flux 21* Yes
OVO OVO SEG Tariff 20 Yes
Good Energy Solar Savings Exclusive 20 Yes
So Energy So Bright 20 Yes
E.ON Next Export Exclusive 16.5 Yes
Octopus Outgoing Fixed 15 Yes
OVO OVO SEG Tariff 15 Yes
ScottishPower SmartGen+ 15 Yes
British Gas Export and Earn Plus 15 Yes
Good Energy Solar Savings 15 Yes
ScottishPower SmartGen 12 No
Octopus Outgoing Fixed Lite 8 Yes
British Gas Export & Earn Flex 6.4 No
Rebel Energy SEG Tariff 6 No
EDF Export Variable Value 5.6 Yes
Utility Warehouse UW Smart Export Guarantee - Bundle 5.6 Yes
Pozitive Energy SEG tariff 5 No
So Energy So Export Flex 4.5 No
Octopus SEG tariff 4.1 No
OVO OVO SEG Tariff 4 No
Good Energy Export Only 4 No
Utilita Utilita Smart Export Guarantee 3 No
EDF Export Variable 3 No
E.ON Next Export 3 No
Utility Warehouse UW Smart Export Guarantee - Standard 2 No
E E SEG January2020v.1 1 No

* Some tariffs pay different amounts depending on the time of day and their location in the UK. For those tariffs, we’ve given the average rate.

The Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) is a government-backed initiative that compels energy suppliers with more than 150,000 customers to pay small-scale generators for the excess solar electricity they send to the grid.

However, language has evolved since the SEG’s beginnings in 2020, and the term is now often used to refer to all export tariffs, even those that aren't part of the scheme. They all perform the same function, so we've included all of them on our page.

The best SEG rates: explained

1. Intelligent Octopus Flux

Intelligent Octopus Flux is the best choice for Octopus customers who have solar panels and a GivEnergy battery.

If your only barrier is switching to Octopus, we’d recommend doing so in most cases – as long as it makes financial sense to your household.

With Intelligent Octopus Flux, you’ll receive 30.31p per kWh you send to the grid from 4pm to 7pm, and 22.73p per kWh the rest of the day.

This works out to 27p, on average – but you can earn more by exporting all your excess electricity at peak times, which your Octopus app can do for you.

Everything you need to know

Feature Extra info
Rate per kWh 27p*
How to qualify

• Receive grid electricity from Octopus

• Own solar panels & an eligible GivEnergy battery

• Own an Apple or Android smartphone or tablet

Payment schedule Monthly
Exit fee None
Tariff type Variable

* Some tariffs pay different amounts depending on the time of day and their location in the UK. For those tariffs, we’ve given the average rate.

If you'd like to sign up for Intelligent Octopus Flux, click the button below.

2. Octopus Flux

Octopus Flux is a variable tariff that pays you different amounts depending on when you export your solar electricity, and also where you live in the UK. It currently pays out 21p per kWh, on average.

Generally speaking, if you export between 2am and 5am, you’ll only be paid about 6p per kWh – but if you send your electricity to the grid between 4pm and 7pm, the rate will rocket up to around 26p per kWh.

If you export your energy at other times, you’ll typically make about 16p per kWh – but if you export as much electricity as you can during peak hours, you can earn a lot more.

All you need to access this rate is to be an Octopus customer, and own a solar panel system that includes a battery.

This tariff doesn’t pay as much as Intelligent Octopus Flux, but it is less restrictive about which battery you can have.

Everything you need to know

Feature Extra info
Rate per kWh 21p*
How to qualify

• Receive grid electricity from Octopus

• Own solar panels and a battery

Payment schedule Monthly
Exit fee None
Tariff type Variable

* Some tariffs pay different amounts depending on the time of day and their location in the UK. For those tariffs, we’ve given the average rate.

If you'd like to sign up for Octopus Flux, click the button below.

3. OVO SEG Tariff

If you receive electricity from OVO, and buy its solar package – which includes a storage battery – you can access the company’s highest SEG rate of 20p per kWh.

Like most export tariffs, OVO’s offering applies at any time of the day – though 20p is the highest rate available, if you’re happy to switch suppliers.

Apart from requiring you to buy solar panels, a battery, and grid electricity through OVO, the main drawback of this tariff is that it’s not nationwide.

When OVO Solar launched in 2023, it was only available in Wales and south-west England – some of the best places in the UK to have solar panels.

The campaign has since expanded to most parts of England and Scotland, but it’s still not available in places including Cambridge, Ipswich, Liverpool, Manchester, and Northampton.

Everything you need to know

Feature Extra info
Rate per kWh 20p
How to qualify

• Buy solar panels and a battery through OVO

• Receive grid electricity through OVO

• Live in an eligible area

Payment schedule Quarterly
Exit fee £15
Tariff type Fixed

4. Good Energy Solar Savings Exclusive

Good Energy’s 20p per kWh rate is generous, but limited.

It’s only available in the south and south-west of England, to customers who have solar panels and a battery installed by Wessex ECOEnergy, which Good Energy acquired in 2023.

You also have to import your grid electricity through Good Energy, specifically on either the company’s Standard Variable Tariff or Good to Fix tariff.

If you live in an eligible area and already receive your electricity from Good Energy, this could be the best rate for you – but that doesn’t include many households.

Everything you need to know

Feature Extra info
Rate per kWh 20p
How to qualify

• Live in an eligible area

• Receive grid electricity through one of Good Energy’s eligible tariffs

• Have solar panels and a battery installed by Wessex ECOEnergy

Payment schedule Quarterly
Exit fee None
Tariff type Fixed

5. So Energy So Bright

This promotional rate is only available until the end of 2024.

To qualify, you'll need to get solar panels and a battery installed through So Energy before August 2024.

When 2025 starts, you'll be automatically moved to the company's So Export Flex rate, which pays a relatively measly 4.5p per kWh.

So Export Flex operates on a 30-day rolling contract with no exit fee, you can easily sign up to a different company's tariff.

But it's still best to avoid temporary promotional rates like this one unless they pay more than the best rate on the market – which So Bright doesn't.

Everything you need to know

Feature Extra info
Rate per kWh 20p
How to qualify

• Buy solar & battery system from So Energy before the end of August 2024

Payment schedule Monthly
Exit fee None
Tariff type Fixed

6. E.ON Next Export Exclusive

If E.ON supplies you with electricity, you can take advantage of this decently generous export tariff without needing to get E.ON-installed solar panels.

16.5p per kWh rate is the highest rate you can get without needing to either buy your solar installation through the same company – in the case of OVO and Good Energy – or get a specific piece of gear, in the case of Octopus’s battery requirements.

Just like OVO and Good Energy, you’ll be guaranteed to receive this rate until your contract ends – but you have to request quarterly payments, or E.ON will pay you annually.

Everything you need to know

Feature Extra info
Rate per kWh 16.5p
How to qualify

• Receive grid electricity from E.ON

or

• Buy a solar installation from E.ON

Payment schedule Annually, or quarterly if requested
Exit fee None
Tariff type Fixed

If you’re wondering how much a solar & battery system could save you, just click the button below, answer a few questions, and we’ll provide you with an estimate.

a landscape with a series of electricity pylons set against a sunset

7. Octopus Outgoing Fixed

This is Octopus’s simplest export tariff.

All you need to do is get your grid electricity from Octopus, and every month you’ll receive 15p for every kWh your solar panels export, which is a reasonably good rate.

If you’re not looking to get a solar battery, and if you’d rather have Octopus as a supplier than E.ON or British Gas, this is your best choice.

Everything you need to know

Feature Extra info
Rate per kWh 15p
How to qualify

• Receive grid electricity from Octopus

• Own solar panels

Payment schedule Monthly
Exit fee None
Tariff type Fixed

8. ScottishPower SmartGen+

This 15p per kWh tariff is a good offer for households who want to purchase either solar panels or a battery from ScottishPower, but not their grid electricity.

This flexibility makes SmartGen+ stand out in a crowded field – and if you’re completely wedded to your energy supplier, this is the option for you.

However, if you don’t mind switching suppliers to earn more from your solar output, there are better choices.

Octopus Flux and E.ON Next Export Exclusive tariffs offer higher rates, and don’t mind which company is responsible for your solar installation, as long as it’s appropriately certified.

SmartGen+ is variable, so you could technically end up making more with ScottishPower – but all else being equal, you won’t.

Everything you need to know

Feature Extra info
Rate per kWh 15p
How to qualify

• Buy solar panels and/or battery through ScottishPower

Payment schedule Every 90 days
Exit fee None
Tariff type Variable

9. British Gas Export and Earn Plus

15p per kWh is a good rate, and the qualifying conditions are pleasingly limited: you just have to import your electricity from British Gas.

Households don’t even need a full solar installation to be eligible – so if you don’t have panels yet, you can start using this tariff with just a battery.

Everything you need to know

Feature Extra info
Rate per kWh 15p
How to qualify

• Receive grid electricity from British Gas

• Own solar panels or a battery

Payment schedule Quarterly
Exit fee None
Tariff type Variable

10. OVO SEG Tariff

To access this 15p per kWh rate, you’ll need to have solar panels installed through OVO, and to get your electricity through the Bristol-based company too.

Like OVO’s other export tariffs, it comes with a £15 exit fee, and is only available in certain areas – a list which includes London, Birmingham, and Edinburgh, but not Liverpool or Manchester.

So if you like getting your electricity from OVO, live in an eligible region, and would rather not buy a battery through OVO – or at all – this may be the tariff for you.

However, if your only issue is not wanting to buy a battery, E.ON's 16.5p per kWh rate is both higher and widely available across the UK.

Everything you need to know

Feature Extra info
Rate per kWh 15p
How to qualify

• Buy solar panels through OVO

• Receive grid electricity through OVO

• Live in an eligible area

Payment schedule Quarterly
Exit fee £15
Tariff type Fixed

11. Good Energy Solar Savings

This is the best choice for customers who want Good Energy to supply their grid electricity, but would rather have flexibility in all other areas.

The Solar Savings tariff doesn’t require you to buy your solar panel system through Good Energy’s subsidiary, Wessex ECOEnergy, unlike the Solar Savings Exclusive rate.

Since Wessex ECOEnergy is limited to households in the south and south-west, this opens up savings to Good Energy consumers all over the country.

Everything you need to know

Feature Extra info
Rate per kWh 15p
How to qualify

• Receive grid electricity through one of Good Energy’s eligible tariffs

• Own solar panels and a battery

Payment schedule Quarterly
Exit fee None
Tariff type Fixed

12. ScottishPower SmartGen

ScottishPower SmartGen is the best tariff on the market for customers who want to choose their energy supplier and solar installer.

If you don’t like being forced to use a specific product, this 12p per kWh is far better than the next-best option of its kind, So Energy’s 7.5p per kWh So Export Flex tariff.

If you’re picking between the two, you can earn 60% more by signing up with ScottishPower for your SEG tariff – with no strings or downsides.

Everything you need to know

Feature Extra info
Rate per kWh 12p
How to qualify

• Own solar panels

Payment schedule Every 90 days
Exit fee None
Tariff type Variable

What is the best SEG rate for you?

The highest SEG rate for a household with solar panels and a battery is the Intelligent Octopus Flux tariff.

However, every home’s energy consumption and preferences are different, so no tariff will be perfect for every customer.

If you add an electric vehicle to your solar and battery system, you may well make more money on Intelligent Octopus Go, while heat pump customers will probably get better returns on Cosy Octopus.

You should also ask yourself whether you’d be comfortable switching suppliers, how much it matters to you who installs your solar panel system, and whether you want the security of a fixed tariff, or the potentially higher profits of a variable rate.

There’s a best SEG rate for everyone. For example, if you don’t mind who your supplier or installer is, you should generally choose Intelligent Octopus Flux – but if you don’t want a battery, E.ON Next Export Exclusive is your best option.

And if you decide you’re not ready for solar panels yet, but you do want a storage battery, there’s a best SEG rate for you too: British Gas’s Export and Earn Plus tariff.

Summary

Export tariffs have come a long way since the Smart Export Guarantee was introduced in 2020.

With Intelligent Octopus Flux, you and your supplier will pay each other identical amounts for each kWh of electricity. Whether it’s the solar power you send them, or the electricity you get from the grid, it costs the same.

That represents huge progress, as does the sheer amount of variety, which allows households to pick a decent export rate no matter their inclinations over suppliers, installers, and types of system.

Sunsave can help you model your consumption and lay out all the best options for you, so you can choose the best tariff for your home.

If you’re interested in how much you could save with a solar & battery system, click the button below, enter a few details, and we’ll generate a quick estimate.

Best SEG rates: FAQs

What is the best SEG tariff?

The best SEG tariff is Intelligent Octopus Flux, as it gets you the highest rate of return – 27p per kWh – all other things being equal.

However, you should consider a number of factors before choosing a tariff, including whether you want solar panels, a battery, or both, how open you are to changing suppliers, who you’d like to carry out your installation, and whether you’d rather sign up to a variable or fixed rate.

The best rate for solar panel owners who don’t want to switch energy providers is ScottishPower’s SmartGen tariff, which pays 12p per kWh.

If you have a heat pump, you should consider Cosy Octopus, or if you have an electric vehicle, Intelligent Octopus Go may be your ideal tariff.

Are SEG payments likely to increase?

SEG payments are likely to increase as electricity prices stay high.

Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine started in 2022, the cost of energy for domestic consumers has stayed around 80% higher than it was previously.

Companies have gradually raised their SEG tariffs to more fairly compensate solar panel owners for the electricity they export, but many suppliers – like EDF, So Energy, and Utility Warehouse – still have plenty of ground to make up.

What is the average SEG payment?

The average SEG payment is 10p per kWh, though all solar households can access a higher export tariff without switching import suppliers.

If the average home with solar panels and a battery sent 56%* of the electricity it generated to the grid, it would make £247 per year on this 10p per kWh rate.

On a higher tariff, like Octopus Flux, this same household could make upwards of £630 per year.

* These figures are based on an average of 30 different solar & battery system designs from Sunsave’s database, comprising properties from all over the UK. Each system in this sample uses 430W solar panels and a 5.8kWh battery, and is signed up to the Octopus Flux export tariff.

Related articles

Monocrystalline solar panel array on UK rooftop, yellow £ symbol in the centre and an electricity pylon in the background

The Smart Export Guarantee: explained

Photo of author Melody AbeniMelody Abeni
A small cartoon yellow solar panel, a small carton pylon, and a small cartoon pile of money, turquoise background

Solar export tariffs: what are they and how do you sign up?

Photo of solar panel writer Josh Jackman against blank backgroundJosh Jackman
a black solar panel on the left, a graphic of a yellow coin with a pound symbol in the middle, going into a black slot, and the Octopus Energy logo in the bottom-right corner, all against an aquamarine background

Intelligent Octopus Flux: explained

Photo of solar panel writer Josh Jackman against blank backgroundJosh Jackman
A house with a dark roof that's almost completely covered in solar panels, against the background of a sunset, with a graphic representation of a yellow-and-black pound coin going in a slot, by an aquamarine strip on the side of the image

Are solar panels worth it in the UK?

Photo of solar panel writer Josh Jackman against blank backgroundJosh Jackman
Photo of solar panel writer Josh Jackman against blank background

Written byJosh Jackman

Josh has written about the rapid rise of home solar for the past five years. His data-driven work has been featured in United Nations and World Health Organisation documents, as well as publications including The Eco Experts, Financial Times, The Independent, The Telegraph, The Times, and The Sun. Josh has also been interviewed as a renewables expert on BBC One’s Rip-Off Britain, ITV1’s Tonight show, and BBC Radio 4 and 5.

Copyright © 2024 Sunsave

Sunsave Group Limited (company number: 13741813) and its affiliates, Sunsave UK Limited (company number: 13941186) and Sunsave Energy Limited (company number: 13952135), together trading as “Sunsave”, provide renewable energy systems and finance and are registered at 23 Ansdell Terrace, London, W8 5BY. Sunsave UK Limited (FRN: 1008450) is a credit broker and can introduce you to a panel of lenders for the purpose of arranging finance. Sunsave Energy Limited (FRN: 979494) is a lender. Both Sunsave UK Limited and Sunsave Energy Limited are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.