UK consumers are not happy with the levels of service they receive from price comparison sites, according to new research by Which? Money.
In its first ever , Which? Money found that these websites have the lowest average customer score of any financial sector it has surveyed, with no comparison site scoring higher than 50% (Moneysupermarket.com). At the bottom was Moneyextra.com, with just 37%.
People expressed a lack of trust in comparison sites. Less than a third said they trust them to find the best price available, while more than two thirds thought they would be presented with products that make the websites most commission. A lack of trust was also a key reason among those who chose not to use comparison websites (21%).
A quarter of people said they’d found a cheaper quote elsewhere, and 12% said they were unhappy with the quotes they got. Even after searching for products on comparison sites, more than half said they preferred to buy directly from the provider.
When a Which? expert rated the sites on a number of factors – such as ease of use, presentation, help text and information about the excess – no one site was clearly the best, and all had aspects which could be improved.
Issues of particular concern included the often quite high voluntary excess set by some sites. These voluntary excesses were often combined with the insurer’s compulsory excess on the results page, making it hard for customers to make comparisons between sites and find the best policy to suit their needs.
The most popular sites in survey were Moneysupermarket (used by 36%), Confused (30%) and Gocompare (16%). Car insurance, home insurance and savings accounts were the most searched for products on the comparison sites.
Which? Best Buys
James Daley, Editor of Which? Money, said: ‘If you’re shopping around for a good deal, it makes sense to go to more than one site and be aware some companies aren’t featured. Watch out for things like voluntary excess, and make sure the policy you’re offered is what you actually want’.
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