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Comparasites market hots up

I blogged a while ago about the cute campaign for Compare the Market.

The campaign kicked off two years ago and was fresh, different and new at the time.  Now, it’s a bit tired, lacklustre and dull imho.

It’s also been a while since I blogged about the comparasites of finance.

These are the websites that bring together all the different rates, accounts, offers and details for banking, credit cards, insurance and more.

The market is led by MoneySupermarket.com and closely followed by Confused.com, ComparetheMarket.com and the incredibly annoying GoCompare.com.

  • MoneySupermarket.com established its website in 1999
  • Confused.com launched in 2000
  • ComparetheMarket.com and GoCompare.com both started in 2006

So then I get a really interesting report sent to me by Nielsen the other day that shows how all of this advertising works or does not.

First, the Compare the Market ads are the most liked which is not surprising as it’s based upon a cute leetle meerkat who says “Simples”, awww.

Second, Go Compare is the most remembered advert. That’s not surprising either, as it’s the most IRRITATING.

What is surprising is that Compare the Market and Go Compare are far more popular with young adults, whilst the less in-yer-face sites of confused and MoneySupermarket are preferred by the over 50s.

Composition Index by gender and age of unique audience, January 2011

Age

Source: UKOM/Nielsen, January 2011

It also surprised me that MoneySupermarket gets a regular 2.5 to 3.5 million unique visitors per month, compared with the other three who all are vying for second spot of around a million visitors per month.

Online audience by unique UK visitors (000s)

Traffic 

Source: UKOM/Nielsen, Jan 2008 – Dec 2010

That could be put down to MoneySupermarket being first to market for this comparison malarkey … or maybe it’s also attributable to how they advertise, for whilst the other sites all blast away in print and television advertising, MoneySupermarket spends 14% of their total spend on online advertising.

Ad spend by media type – last three years, Jan 2008 – Dec 2010

Spend 

 Source: The Nielsen Company, Jan 2008 – Dec 2010

Wise people, as it means their cost per unique visitor is far lower than their rivals.

Advertising cost per unique UK visitor (£)

Cost 

 Source: The Nielsen Company & UKOM, Jan 2008 – Dec 2010

Mind you, I have to question Nielsen’s figures here, as my friends at Compare the Market would say their massive viral and social campaign for the meerkat would count as internet advertising?

Compare the Market has a website for insurance, for the meerkat  and for the meerkat’s village, Meerkovo.

They have a YouTube channel, as well as a large Facebook (770,000 followers) and Twitter  (44,000 followers) presence.

Their competitors have nothing like this sort of web presence, and so doesn’t this count as a bit of internet advertising?

Either way, it just goes to show that there is a battle raging right now to be the online comparasite leader.

That’s why omnipotent retailer Tesco has a space in this market called Tesco Compare, and why Google just spent over $60 million buying BeatthatQuote.com to get into this too.

It’s definitely an area worth watching, just for the battle if nothing else.

p.s. anyone who wants to know more of these stats btw, just let me know.

 

Meanwhile, here’s a selection of the ads for those who haven’t seen them.

Money Supermarket

Confused

Compare the Market

Go Compare

 

About Chris M Skinner

Chris M Skinner
Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog, the Finanser.com, as author of the bestselling book Digital Bank, and Chair of the European networking forum the Financial Services Club. He has been voted one of the most influential people in banking by The Financial Brand (as well as one of the best blogs), a FinTech Titan (Next Bank), one of the Fintech Leaders you need to follow (City AM, Deluxe and Jax Finance), as well as one of the Top 40 most influential people in financial technology by the Wall Street Journal’s Financial News. To learn more click here...

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