2 interesting reports by e-colsuntancy this morning. The first one shows online shopping reaching record highs as people shun the wet streets. Nothing I wouldn’t expect although the numbers are rather staggering.
The second one is a bit more controversial, and claims that comparison shopping may be experiencing the inital stages of a consumer backlash, on the back of some sites’ less-than-ethical product selection and sorting and Direct Line’s latest advertising tirade. While I think the Direct Line argument is probably overstated, there is something to be said abou the long-term sustainability of practices like those of Pricerunner and Kelkoo, which make it very difficult to actually find a good deal by obscuring the results with ratings and value grades of their own making, typically reflective of their own interest -the highest bidder goes first.
Whether consumers will actually abandon these sites or whether sites will tone down their push to provide an environment where consumers want to shop is still to be seen. I bet for the second case, be it through change at the current sites or with a new generation of price comparison destinations operating with the benefit of hindsight.
What do you think?