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Advertiser: Conns Camera
Medium: Internet (Company Website)
ASAI Code 7th Edition: 2.4(c), 4.1, 4.4, 4.9, 4.10, 5.5
The website showed different images of the camera. It stated
€20 Instant Cashback Available (until 31st Dec) │ FREE 2 Year Warranty!
The complainant said the online advertisement stated a ‘special’ price of €299 down from €319. The complainant considered the offer to be misleading. He said that he went to the store with the intention of purchasing the product for €299 and understood that he would then be eligible for an additional €20 “cashback” resulting in an actual outlay of €279.
The advertiser stated the promotion in question was one of a number of “instant discount” offers that ran across different brands in 2017. They said they could not understand where the confusion arose as the discount amount was taken off at the time of purchase and was not claimed back from a manufacturer after purchase as with other “cashback” promotions. The advertiser said they clearly showed the normal price, the reduced final price and an explanation of the discount on the relevant product page of their website and would have had a summary of the offer on a specific list page elsewhere on their website. They said they also replicated this information on their price cards in the shop.
They said this type of instant discount promotion has been extremely successful and well received by customers and they fail to see how they could more clearly display the information to the public.
The Complaints Committee considered the detail of the complaint and the advertisers’ response. The Committee noted that as well as showing a ‘before’ and ‘after’ price, the offer stated “€20 Instant Cashback Available …”. They considered that a “cashback” offer would normally be understood as involving the receipt of money rather than a discount on the price. They did not consider that it was clear that the €20 “cashback” was in fact the discount already included in the ‘after’ price. In the circumstances they considered the offer had the potential to mislead consumers and was in breach of Section 5.5 of the Code.
The advertisement must not reappear in its current form.