New figures show half a million customers switched electricity supplier last month.

According to Energy UK, 493,912 customers switched supplier, a 13 per cent increase compared to May 2017.

This brings the total number of customers who have switched supplier over the first five months of 2018 to nearly 2.3 million. This is already ahead of the figure at this time last year (2.2 million) when a record 5.5 million electricity customers went on to make a change.

Small and mid-tier suppliers are continuing to make gains with over a third of total switches in May involving customers moving from larger suppliers to these providers.

Confidence in switching is also high with 9 in 10 customers happy with the process according to the Energy Switch Guarantee (ESG), a voluntary industry initiative to provide additional confidence in switching. The initiative now covers more than 90 per cent of the retail market.

Lawrence Slade, chief executive of Energy UK, said: “The latest figures show that more and more customers are saving money by switching – with the numbers increasing on last year, a record year in itself.”

Despite a small dip in the number of consumers switching suppliers during the first quarter of the year (1.29 million) compared with the same period in 2017 (1.3 million), the figures remain steady.

In a bid to make the switching process more accessible for consumers, Ofgem revealed plans in February to press ahead with changes that will allow customers to swap supplier by the end of the next working day.

Consumers are to automatically receive at least £30 in compensation if they experience a problem in switching between suppliers, under new Ofgem proposals outlined this week.