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Product: Household (Domestic Appliances)
Medium: Internet (Company Website)
ASAI Code 7th Edition: 2.4(c), 4.1, 4.4, 4.5
Advertising on the website for Appliances Delivered featured images of various kitchen household appliances. The strapline referred to the following:
“Half Price Installation
HALF PRICE INSTALLATION ON EVERYTHING!
*Selected areas only. Applies to products where installation is applicable.”
When conducting a product search for gas hobs, the viewer was presented with a range of gas hobs with the wording “HALF PRICE INSTALLATION ON EVERYTHING!”
The complainant said that he clicked on the image of a gas hob provided on the website and tried to find out the cost of having it fitted in line with the “half price installation offer.” He said that he couldn’t find a price anywhere on the website for the fitting and when he rang the company he was informed that they did not fit gas hobs.
The complainant said that while the small print had referenced the fact that the offer applied to selected areas only and to products where installation was applicable that he considered the strapline of the advertisement to be misleading as it had been contradicted by the information provided in the small print.
The advertisers said that the ‘half price installation’ reference should not have appeared over the gas hob as they currently do not offer installation on gas appliances. They said that the error had occurred as a result of a technical issue, as well as a degree of human error. They said that when they received the complaint the error which had arisen was corrected immediately.
The advertisers said that the issue which had arisen had been related to the website’s internal search system, this message was only presented to users who searched for products using the search bar located in the header of the website. They said that gas appliances had not been referenced in any other marketing material during this promotion and that an asterisk had been used to inform customers that the promotion had applied to products that qualified for installation under their service offering.
In conclusion the advertisers said that as the technical issue had been corrected the error which occurred would not be repeated.
The Complaints Committee considered the details of the complaint and the advertisers’ response.
The Committee noted that the advertisement had offered “half price installation on everything” but went on to detail exclusions. The Committee considered that the offer was intended to be half price price of all installations but by stating “half price installation on everything”, the offer appeared to be that a) installation was available on all appliances and b) that there was ½ price off these installations. The Committee considered that the use of an absolute claim e.g. ‘everything’ in conjunction with exclusions was likely to mislead. The Committee concluded that the advertising had breached Sections 4.1, 4.4 and 4.5 of the Code.
As the error had been corrected no further action was required.