ASA bans Wren advert

The Advertising Standards Authority has banned a ‘misleading’ online advertisement by Wren Kitchens following complaints from Wickes and B&Q.

The advert promoted ‘half price kitchens plus an extra 20% off’ together with the tag line ‘Popular Kitchens’ and images of various options with a red banner underneath stating ‘half price + extra 20% off’.

Wren had been offering its kitchens at half price throughout 2017, but Wickes and B&Q questioned whether the savings claims were genuine.

Wren argued that the advertised discount in those promotions related solely to kitchen units that were sold at a ‘list price’ and that there were significant cost savings when customers placed orders for a larger number of units. These bulk-buy and multi-buy discounts were typical promotional tools, it said.

However, the ASA considered that consumers were likely to understand from the reference to ‘half price kitchens plus an extra 20% off’ that Wren were promoting a further 20% reduction in an ongoing half-price sale.

It also considered that consumers were likely to understand that they would be able to make a genuine saving against the usual selling price for kitchens at the time the ad appeared and would generally understand the claim in the ad to be one that referred to a temporary price promotion.

“We acknowledged that the ‘extra 20% off’ would be time-limited but we considered that consumers would expect that the whole promotion, which included the ‘half price’ element, would also be temporary,” the ASA said.

“We noted that there was an asterisk after the quoted ‘20% off’, which suggested that there were qualifications elsewhere in the ad. However, we considered it was not clear what the asterisk referred to and there was no qualification which explained that the promotion only applied to orders of five or more kitchen units. We acknowledged that the qualification was present in other examples of Wren’s advertising, but in the ad that was the subject of the investigation, there was no qualification.

“Because we considered that the savings claims would be understood to be a genuine temporary saving against the usual selling price for the product and that was not the case, we concluded that the savings claim had not been substantiated and was likely to mislead consumers.”

The ASA has told Wren to ensure that in future they make clear when they were offering a multi-buy discount and do not mislead consumers by implying that savings were against the usual selling price of their kitchens where that was not the case.


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