Choice 'buy online' "service"

I’m really not impressed with the ‘buy online’ option when looking at a product. A case in point is an Electrolux EVEP616SC oven - the buy online price through “Winning Appliances” is $2030, Good Guys have it on sale for $1567 and even your test page claims it is $1699.

So much for looking after the consumer - your claimed reason for existence.


I checked up on that oven with Appliances online . They are selling it for $1567 with free delivery . They will also remove your old oven if disconnected free of charge , The recommended retail price of that oven is $2949 .

Regarding your comment " So much for looking after the consumer-your claimed reason for existence " Choice is a consumer advocate that is true but when testing products they can only go on the information regarding prices as given to them by the supplier . There is always a variance in price on most white goods and ovens . This is mainly due to the continual updating of models , newer technologies etc . /

The prices as printed by Choice are just a guide . As you can see on that oven we have a variance in price ranging from $1567 to $2949 . Prices are variable on goods such as these and the resources Choice would have to use in keeping up with these prices could no doubt , I’m sure , be used to better effect in other areas of their organisation.

I had another look around the net after finishing my post and found that model Electrolux oven for $1249 at some Good Guys Stores .



I agree with everything you say and the prices in the reviews are certainly only a guide, however when you click on the ‘price and buy’ link next to the text for Winning Appliances - it takes you direct to Winning Appliances website where the price is $2030. The interesting thing is that someone at the local Winning Appliances store recently told me they own Appliances Online. The ‘buy now’ price on a website owned by a firm who claim to be defending the rights of the consumer is steering business to a company charging considerably over the odds in this case.

Choice is supposed to be impartial, the inclusion of a single ‘buy now’ option in its ratings is ethically doubtful anyway; that the firm they choose to partner with is not competitive (based on this example and personal shopping experience) casts an even greater shadow over the ethics of the Australian Consumers Association.

The thing that really cheezes me off about this whole thing is that despite having a magazine subscription for years, I have to pay extra to get information on some tests on-line, when you access the information they try to flog the product at a significant markup to the ‘real’ price and to rub salt into the wounds there is no text on why Product A is better than Product B, all we get these days is a list of percentages.


I checked the Choice online site for the current oven tests and no where could I find a link to a preferred buyer being shown . Maybe I’m missing something or may be I’m running AD Blocker Plus and it is blocking out this unwanted link . /

In my dealings with Choice over the years they may have recommended a particular supplier . Point in case the "What’s in the basket tests between Aldi , Woolworths and Coles New world .In these cases the results seem to speak for themselves and Aldi was clearly the cheaper basket . Choice never put a link to Aldi because of this . That would be unethical and breach their own terms of service . /

I think you should phone , Email or text one of the Choice staffers and voice your concerns to them . Over the years I have found them most amiable to deal with despite some of my calls , especially in the 1990’s , being quite negative regarding their organisation and policies . /

In a nut shell . Phone or touch base with them and voice your concerns .


Would you please copy the address for the Choice website you are seeing this link on and post it in here.

We are not sure you are actually seeing a correct Choice site or not and the address will help us confirm it or not.

If it isn’t a correct site you could be subject to a Browser highjack.


Can you post a screen shot of what you are seeing, showing this ‘buy online’ option? I’ve not seen that option on reviews for quite a long time.



The link is at the top of the image.


Thank you for doing that. Much appreciated.


Could you hand type this address in for me to just check:

(please include the https part) You should get a green lock near the address. If you click this you should get and tell you it is secured.

Opps my bad missed a bit in the link and it is now corrected.

Yes the page does display the link to Winning Appliances and you are correct on the pricing. Thank you again for your posts and assistance. I am sure Choice will respond to your concerns as soon as possible.


I stand corrected on what I wrote in answer to you .


Hi @mcziel2,

I agree, there’s definitely something going wrong here. I’m following up with our tech team and will get back to you with a full response.


I used appliancesonline prices to negotiate a deal with Clive Peters (at the time) for my current kitchen. They came within 10% so I was happy with that :slight_smile:


Hi @mcziel2, I’m just following up as promised in my earlier post.

Over the past few years, we’ve experimented with different ways to provide a complete experience for CHOICE members including consideration of purchase, advice on what to look for and the best, unbiased reviews of products. Once they’ve decided on a product, we want provide people with an opportunity to buy online through our platform. We’ve attempted to provide purchasing/price comparison options before but the experience in the past has not been at the level we would expect for our members, so we ceased previous programs.

We started a pilot program with Winning Appliances earlier this year to this end. We have also since provided some feedback back to Winning Appliances to highlight their prices are higher than other retailers (including their sister site, Appliances Online). We are also working with other retailers as well as some price comparison websites and we hope to add these to the membership offering soon.

In the meantime, we encourage people you to shop around for the best price and when we have a greater offering on the website, they choose the best price or use our service to negotiate a better price elsewhere.

Hope that helps explain the situation and thanks again for highlighting this, the feedback is appreciated.


We’ve used the Choice Home Shopper service about 20 times in the last 5 years, and we have been consistently extremely happy with the prices paid and the services given.

Can’t recommend it enough.


I buy through Choice shopper and to this point, I have never become dissatisfied. Ok, you have to go and get a price that you could get for but that’s it


@cmpmal & @Ian_Mac

Thank you for that feedback on the Choice Shopper service. It seems like a really great benefit and I am very glad it has benefited you both in your purchases.

Just to explain, the issue in this topic is not about that Shopper service but is about a link that has appeared on some Choice pages about ovens (it may be on other Choice product pages as well but we have only looked at this oven section so far). The link points to Winning Appliances’ page about the item on the Choice product page so it can be purchased online. If you buy from this link the price for the particular oven mentioned in this topic is $2030 which is about $400 to $600 dearer than could be found on other stores on the web. @BrendanMays response just before your posts explains what has occurred and why it happened. If you want to see the Choice page about the oven follow this link and about a third of the way down on the page you will find a blue button with the words “Price and buy >” on it that will take you to the Winning Appliances page.


Seriously, does Choice need to use an affiliate link to Amazon? Thin end of the cheese wedge, Brendan.


Thanks for the comment, I’ve moved your post over here so that we can collect any affiliate links discussions, and so that you can see our previous explanation of why we have experimented with affiliate links. I’m happy to elaborate on any point if needed, and Community members can also leave feedback directly on our website here.


Hi Brendan,

As the one who raised the advertising/affiliate issue in the first place - I thought Winning Appliances links were going. So why would you try again with Amazon?

Again, when I am looking at Choice (and I’m still concerned about the ethics of paying extra to see on-line reports which, like the printed reports are nowhere as detailed as they used to be) I don’t want to see affiliate links, regardless of it being WInning Appliances, Amazon or the florist shop down the road. The implication of any affiliate link is that the website giving the link recommends the supplier in the link/s over and above others because there is some benefit to the end consumer - maybe a cheaper price or longer warranty (and the website hosting the link gets a payment). As it turned out with the Winning Alliances price, there was no benefit to the consumer - in fact if I had followed the link I would have been $400 worse off - no wonder they could afford a kickback to Choice!

Given Choice is supposed to be for consumers and completely impartial - what is the justification for ‘recommending’ Winning Appliances over (say) The Good Guys or Interflora over the florist down the road by provision of a link to a shopping site.

If you are ‘giving’ independent advice in response to my subscription funding, how can Choice ethically require additional payment for on-line access or ethically link to affiliates websites where demonstrably I am paying extra. If this is the future of Choice I might as well subscribe to CNet - it’s free - and apparently you are both happy to link to affiliates, not be concerned about value for your end consumers and seek advertising if the price is right.

Cheers Neil.


Hi @mcziel2

The very issues you are currently commenting on have been aired internally as well. I am not privy to most of this but as a “Consumer Defender” I can say that many of those who also hold this title have raised many of the same issues and I understand/know CHOICE is listening to this and your feedback.

The difficulty for CHOICE is also how to continue funding the work in a landscape of ever increasing costs. I heartily applaud you making the comments and encourage you to think of ideas that might help fund these increasing costs. Any idea is worth putting forward even if it has been expressed by others elsewhere, the more feedback CHOICE gets the more clarity and choices it will offer them. There is a limit a household budget can afford for membership so increasing actual numbers of members is one way of creating more revenue without having to possibly push the cost of membership up (I don’t know if this is something that has been discussed but I would imagine it has been), but how to do this successfully is the harder question to answer. Anyway please think on it and I encourage anyone reading this thread to also do the same and put your suggestions forward.