Web Aggregators in Financial Services - UK - June 2013
“Price comparison sites still need to convince consumers that they can offer the best possible deal. Many consumers begin the purchasing journey using price comparison sites but end up dropping out before the process is complete. Many of these people choose to drop out in order to check if they can get a better deal by going directly. Price comparison sites should consider offering customers a price promise guarantee in order to tackle the perceptions that customers can get a cheaper deal elsewhere.”
– Stevan Obradovic, Financial Services Analyst
Some questions answered in this report include:
- Why do customers drop out from the price comparison process?
- What can price comparison websites do to stop people dropping out?
- Do consumers use different price comparison sites for different financial products?
- Can Google capitalise on its brand and search engine dominance?
Price comparison websites have become an integral part of the purchasing journey in some financial markets. In the car insurance sector, aggregators have been extremely successful in quickly obtaining market share and capitalising on price sensitive consumers during times of steep premium inflation. Given that price comparison websites are designed to save visitors money, consumer attitudes towards aggregators are generally positive.
Although the top five websites dominate this market, there is very little loyalty among consumers and price comparison users are very much driven by price. Advertising expenditure and website usage are strongly interlinked in this market, indicating that brands have to use media initiatives to remain current. Overall, price comparison website users are more likely to choose a website either through searching online or picking one off the top of their head rather than actually having a favourite aggregator.
This report examines the web aggregator market, with a particular focus on financial products and services. Mintel’s exclusively commissioned consumer research is used to show the usage of different sites, while also looking at the most commonly researched products and research/purchase conversion rates. The aggregator selection process and dropout rates are also examined. This report concludes with consumer concerns about and attitudes towards price comparison websites.
Throughout the report the terms aggregators and price-comparison sites are used to refer to the breed of website that connects consumers to financial services providers by allowing them to make comparisons between different products and providers. These terms are interchangeable and there are no technical differences between the two.
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