New research, carried out by New Zealand comparison company NZ Compare, indicates that a well-known brand is becoming less important as a deciding factor when people choose a new broadband plan. The newly released research report, which investigated the buying behaviour of consumers between September and November 2018, indicates that New Zealanders are becoming savvier and changing the way that they shop for a new broadband connection.
When asked about the factors that were most important in choosing a new broadband plan – price, amount of data, download speeds and promotional offers were all more important than choosing a well-known provider.
The run up to the festive season has also influenced how customers shop for new broadband plans, as people look to take advantage of promotional offers and up front discounts to free up some money for the Christmas holiday period.
Gavin Male, founder and CEO of NZ Compare commented, “Our latest research report revealed that consumers are definitely becoming more price conscious as we get closer to December. The last quarter we have seen a steady and dramatic increase heading into Christmas of people saying they want to switch broadband plan to save money. We are also seeing more people switching plans after being with their provider for less than 24 months, this is driven primarily by the ease in switching from fibre to fibre, indicating that customers are proactively researching new plans as they reach the end of their contract.”
Research for the previous quarter had indicated that customers tended to wait until they move house to change broadband plan – meaning that thousands of Kiwi households were paying up to $400 a year too much for their broadband on legacy plans with an old provider. The latest report has seen a change in shopping behaviour and sees an increase in customer movements between competing providers without the bill payer moving house.
Male says, “This quarter saw some dramatic negative and positive growth when we compared the number of customers that left and the number of new customers that joined specific broadband providers. Using a comparison site like Broadband Compare means that customers are more empowered to choose a new plan based on price, amount of data or speed, rather than simply relying on a familiar name broadband provider when they sign up for a new plan.”
What does this mean for the average broadband customer? Male says, “This is a great time for Kiwi consumers to take advantage of promotional offers over the festive period. We are expecting to see some big changes in the way that broadband plans are priced as Fibre broadband continues to roll out across the country, and copper-based services like ADSL and VDSL start being withdrawn. We are already seeing some big price changes in fibre broadband plans, with one recent offer at just $59.99 per month on a 12 month contract. Copper-based ADSL and VDSL broadband prices are only likely to increase in price as more people migrate to fibre and maintaining the old network becomes more expensive. With price increases on these plans likely, it might be prudent to sign a new 12 or 24 month contract where the price is fixed for the duration.”
The Broadband Compare survey was completed by 1,900 respondents through the period of September to November 2018 as part of the Broadband PULSE market research report produced by independent agency Tactix on market trends in the NZ broadband sector. The latest full report is available for purchase at https://www.nzcompare.com/broadband-pulse