Wowcher under investigation by CMA over pressure selling

by | Mar 31, 2023

Britain’s competition watchdog has launched an investigation into whether consumer deals website Wowcher has been using unfair pressure tactics on customers using methods such as countdown timers.
The Competition and Markets Authority’s (CMA) probe comes two days after its announced a crackdown on online pressure-selling tactics used by retailers to potentially speed up decision-making by shoppers.

The probe will look into the use of timers telling shoppers that deals will soon disappear, as well as other online selling practices used by the business, including how it enrols consumers in its membership scheme.

“People who buy online should not be pressurised by practices implying that they must act quickly to avoid missing out, when this is not the case,” said CMA chief executive Sarah Cardell.

“We’ll be scrutinising these claims from Wowcher and if we find the company is using misleading online selling tactics, we won’t hesitate to take enforcement action, through the courts if necessary.

“This is the second investigation we have opened into urgency claims, which can be a type of pressure selling, and all companies should take note and review their own practices.

“We’ve published advice to help with this, which sets out clearly those online urgency and price reduction claims that are likely to mislead or put unfair pressure on consumers.”

Reporting by Frank Prenesti for

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