‘Too nice to switch’ consumers losing £2bn a year

10 August 2017

Many consumers lack the ruthlessness to switch and save on their bills and it’s costing them billions each year, a new report from GoCompare has found.

The price comparison site says failure to switch providers costs consumers a collective £2 billion each year, while individual households could save more than £500 per year just switching car insurance, home insurance, and energy providers.

GoCompare’s research also looked at how different personality types have a tendency to behave differently in their approach to switching. It found agreeable, warm, and kind people have a much lower tendency to switch compared to more pessimistic, conscientious, and disagreeable people who are far more likely to look for better deals.

A correlation between levels of education, personal financial distress, and how much time people spend looking at their bills was also found. GoCompare says those with fewer years of formal education and lower earners tended to be much less inclined to check their bills regularly and change providers as a result. This is worrying, as it is lower earners who would benefit the most from a more active approach to switching for a better deal.

Matthew Crummack, chief executive officer of GoCompare, comments: “Many financial services and energy companies regularly tell their customers they want them to be loyal, but our research suggests that this misplaced loyalty is costing people billions of pounds a year in higher bills. Plus, the burden often falls most heavily on those least able to afford it, or those too nice to switch.

 “Our research proves that when providers are forced to say things like ‘shop around and you may be able to get a better deal’ – and show this prominently – more people do take note and take action.”

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