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Product: Online Retailer
Advertiser: Independent Shop.ie
ASAI Code 7th Edition: 2.4(c), 4.1, 4.4, 4.9, 4.10, 4.22, 4.26
A press advertisement for the Independent Shop advertised a rechargeable shaver.
“Rechargeable Rotary Shaver
Only €29.99 Was €59.99
Plus €7.95 p&p*”
The advertisement included a red circle with the words “Save €30” in the centre.
Further details were provided in the footnote:
“The ‘was’ pricing refers to the original selling prices offered on the website www.rjoffers.co.uk and in the retail store between 27th April – 26th July 2020.”
The complainant considered that the advertisement was misleading as the advertised price reduction was based on the price charged by a third party and not by the advertisers.
The advertisers said that they did not believe that the advertising was misleading. They said that the product was offered at €29.99 to readers of the newspaper and at the time the offer was published, it was a saving from the full price of the product, €59.99. They said that the offer was for a limited time frame, determined by stock availability, for a consumer to purchase this product at a discount off the usual selling price. They said that they had clarified the source of the ‘Was’ price quoted in the advertisement and the timeframe the product had been offered at that price.
The advertisers said that at no point had they claimed that the price of €59.99 was offered on the Indepdentshop.ie shop and again referred to the fact that they had made the source of the ‘Was’ price clear.
The Complaints Committee considered the detail of the complaint and the advertisers’ response.
The Complaints Committee noted that the Code required that if a marketing communication involves a claim or creates an impression that a product was previously offered at a different price or at a particular price, it should be the case that the product was in fact previously offered at the specified price openly and in good faith and for a reasonable period of time.
The Committee noted that the footnote of the advertisement had stated where the product had been sold at the “was” price. However as the product had not been available to buy from the independentshop.ie at the higher “was” price, the Committee considered that the advertising was in breach of Section 4.26 of the Code.
Action required: The advertisement must not reappear in its current form. The Committee reminded advertisers that where previous price indications are given in marketing communications, they must have offered those products at the specified price openly and in good faith and for a reasonable period of time.