And yet the need for advice is greater than ever… . .
One of the most complex tax systems in the world
During Gordon Brown’s Chancellorship alone and in the 10 year period up until 2006 the volume of tax legislation more than doubled, from 3,700 to 8,300 pages and no-one can read all of it.
The most complex pension system in the world
It’s been estimated that for each and every week that has passed since the introduction of the State Pension scheme by Lloyd George in the early 1900’s, a new piece of pension legislation has been introduced.
Is the outlook gloomy for the 40 million + adult consumers given the reduced access to independent advice?,
The intermediary market is amongst the most resilient having weathered some 20+ years of near continuous Financial Services legislation changes. The means by which products are distributed has already altered significantly with some interesting new entrants into this territory including the recent addition of Argos who have followed other retail giants such as Tesco.
The ‘Supermarkets / Aggregators’ have seen prolific growth generally underpinned by a commercial principle of creating huge website traffic and selling the resultants sales leads for fulfilment elsewhere.
A wise man recently said to me …
“Do these brands now aspire to ‘own a customer journey’ rather than ‘sell a lead’ ?”
Which?’s consumer group survey lends a new slant on this interesting group of marketeers
Only three in ten said they trusted them to find the best price available, while two thirds believed they would be presented with the products that make the websites the most commission.
Over 12 per cent said that they were unhappy with the quotes they were given and even after searching for products on comparison sites, more than half said they brought the product directly from the provider.
A quarter of the people surveyed said that they did not eventually buy through a comparison site because they found a cheaper quote elsewhere.
Source: This is Money – 18 November 2009
The Nationwide Building Society introduced the UK’s first internet banking service on May 27, 1997 with subsequent usage of these type of systems exploding.
Consumers now demand service and as such the online battle is likely to take on a new life in the coming months and years .
Paul Holland is former non-executive chairman of Capita Financial Software and founder of Allmyplans.com.