Avon ad banned for misleading price claims

7-Dec-2016

ASA upholds complaint against special offer adverts in Avon catalogue

The ASA has upheld a complaint made against a special offer listed in an Avon catalogue.

Avon priced its Senses X-treme 720ml hair and body wash at £3, alongside the text: “Normally £4…save £1”. The claim was labelled “misleading” as few of these products were actually sold at the higher price.

In its defence, Avon said that while the special offer was advertised in catalogue number 11, the previous, higher price was listed in catalogue number nine. It also said that several customers had purchased the product at the higher price of £4.

However, the ASA upheld the complaint as it felt that “consumers were likely to understand that £4 was the usual selling price of the product at the time the ad appeared”.

526 units of the product were purchased at the £4 price, but this was said to be a “small percentage” of the total number of units sold. The product was not advertised in catalogue eight and prior to that was sold at £2.40 or £3 in the preceding catalogues.

The ASA said: “For that reason, we considered that the higher selling price of £4 was not the usual selling price and the ad over-stated the savings consumers were likely to make.”

Avon has been told that the advert must not appear again in its current form. The ASA also told the company not to refer to “normal” prices in future advertising unless they have sufficient evidence to demonstrate that this is the usual price.

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