The Results - Fake Savings Analysed
Test 1 (Sample size 13)
Results are summarised in Table 2
- All 13 sites (except TheEnergyShop.com) quoted savings that were significantly greater than the customer would actually achieve. Basically they quoted fake savings.
- Savings quoted ranged from £478 to £520 compared to an actual saving of just £6.35 (six pounds 35 pence).
- The average (mean) saving quoted was £492. That is £486 greater than the actual saving. Put another way, the fake saving is 76 times greater than the actual saving.
- All sites (except TheEnergyShop.com) quoted a saving that was greater than the customer's actual energy bill.
- The sites that consistently quoted the greatest savings were comparethemarket, gocompare and energyhelpline who all came in with a saving of £520. These sites quoted savings over 8000% greater than was achievable.
Test 2 (Sample size 13)
Results are summarised in Table 3
- All 13 sites (except TheEnergyShop.com) showed savings figures that were significantly greater than the customer would achieve.
- Savings quoted ranged from £524 to £557 compared to an actual saving was £197.
- The average (mean)saving quoted was £536. That is £340 (1.7 times) greater than the actual saving.
- The sites that consistently quoted the greatest savings were again comparethemarket, gocompare and energyhelpline who all came in with a saving of £557. These sites quoted savings 173% greater than was achievable.
- Since our last research report on this subject we have noticed that some energy comparison sites give greater prominence to the savings figure, and sometimes hide, or no longer show, the customer's actual current cost. This will almost certainly make it more difficult for consumers to identify that savings figures are being exaggerated, and will likely also convince more people to switch.
- We have also noticed some energy comparison sites take positive steps to make it clear to consumers that they are using the Personal Projection methodology to calculate current costs. Uswitch needs to be commended in this respect. Uswitch do this by prominently showing the customer's actual spend and then making it clear that they are using a different higher number (the Personal Projection) as the basis for comparison. Although they show savings which are exaggerated they nevertheless do more than other sites to make clear that the savings are basically fake.
Campaign to stop fake and mis-leading comparisons
Support our campaign to stop this dodgy and mis-leading practise.
If you have been misled by an energy comparison site that quoted you a saving way above what you actually received you may be entitled to compensation. Get in touch, tell us about your experience and we will see what we can do to help.
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