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Comparing the market? Be careful!

When you flick through the plethora of television channels now available you will be bombarded with advertisements for comparison sites covering everything from holidays to energy companies, telecoms through to insurance. It seems that some people would prefer to sit in front of a computer and make a decision about what and when to purchase, than actually undertake a little research, talk to people, garner advice which is relevant and then make an impartial, balanced and informed decision.

Perhaps for some products these comparison sites are helpful, but when you are considering buying something as important as insurance, would you really be happy to tick a few boxes and then take what you are offered? Comparison sites rarely show you the full picture and so, should you have reason to make a claim, you may find your insurers will not pay out. Here are five of the pitfalls of using such sites:

  • Tick boxes - When providing you with a quote, most comparison websites will make assumptions about your circumstances and automatically tick some of the boxes to speed up the process. This can cause problems if you don’t fit into the website’s preconceived criteria: for example, if you live on a flood plain and are seeking home insurance. If you don’t declare such a material fact, you will find your insurance will not pay out in the event of a claim. Always de-select these boxes first to ensure you get the right quote for a policy which will match your needs.
  • Cheap quotes - Always take the figures with a pinch of salt. If they are too good be true, they are probably too good to be true! With insurance policies, comparison websites use default answers and high excesses to generate these very low figures, and this could mean you end up with a policy which bears no resemblance to what you really need.
  • Sponsored links - Many comparison sites will promote certain items at the top of their list and so not give a full picture of all the products on offer. This can lead to confusion, so to avoid falling for this ploy, make sure you don’t rely on just one website – and remember that these products and services are only at the top of the list because they sponsor the site!
  • Shop around - When you decide on a product you don’t need to buy it from the site itself. Remember too that many, many companies do not feature on comparison sites – and these include some of the largest companies going!
  • Protect your private information - Another good avenue of profit for comparisons sites is generated by selling on the data they collect when you go on their site! Hidden third-party data is often buried in the small print so beware when you enter your phone number or emails – or else you can get bombarded by cold-callers! To avoid being spammed by other companies, make sure you un-tick the relevant boxes.

So there you have it! Comparison sites are not a cure all for your shopping woes and can lead to some very nasty outcomes. It’s not all bad, but why take the risk? One quick phone call to our friendly and professional team at Westhill Insurance Services and you are promised efficient, quick and honest help and advice. As an independent insurance company we will shop around to make sure you get the best deal – and we will not sell you anything you don’t need! Anyway, isn’t it much nicer to be able to explain what you really need, and to know that should you need to make a claim, that there is someone there to help every step of the way?

Westhill Insurance Services – above comparison!

Contact Westhill Insurance Services, today.

Posted By Ryan Jennings on 5th January, 2014