Consumer conditions in the UK 2012: Analysis of the EU Market Monitoring Survey results

Published: 09.2013

This report is based on UK data extracted from the Market Monitoring Surveys (MMS) conducted by the European Commission’s Directorate General for Health and Consumers (DG Sanco). These surveys – conducted in 2010, 2011 and 2012 – asked consumers to rate their recent experiences of markets for goods and services. They provide snapshots of UK consumers’ views of markets that together account for over 70 per cent of UK consumer spending.

The surveys are useful for monitoring which markets work well for consumers and which work poorly. They help policy-makers and regulators understand how factors such as choice, ease of switching and trust in consumer protection contribute to satisfaction with a market.

The data can help answer many questions. Can policy-makers improve the consumer experience by making switching easier? Or by increasing choice in the market through liberalising regulated utilities? Or should policy-makers put greater effort into enforcing consumer protection?

Consumer Futures extracted and analysed UK data from the 2012 DG Sanco MMS survey, which was carried out by GfK by telephone among nationally representative samples of adult consumers (aged 18+) in each of the 27 EU member states, plus Norway and Iceland.

In the UK 500 consumers were interviewed for each of the 51 markets. Interviews for the 2012 survey took place in March and April 2012. Participants were asked a series of questions about their experiences of up to eight markets in which they had recently transacted:

  • Satisfaction – Do products/services live up to what consumers want?

  • Trust – Are suppliers trusted to respect the rules and regulations protecting consumers?

  • Choice – Is there enough choice?

  • Compare – How difficult or easy is it to compare offerings?

  • Complaints – Did consumers experience problems or make a complaint?

  • Switching – Incidence and ease of switching on-going contracts.

Responses to the survey questions are reported as scores out of 10.

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Tags: Consumer Conditions Marketing Monitoring Survey European Commission’s Directorate General for Health and Consumers (DG Sanco) Switching Satisfaction Trust Choice Compare Complaints Consumer Futures GfK
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Consumer Conditions UK 2012.PDF


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