Price comparison sites are plentiful in the UK. In fact, you wouldn’t be able be able to do an internet search for home insurance, cash loans or another financial product without stumbling across one of the big price comparison sites advertised.
Be it moneysupermarket, comparethemarket, or go compare – it makes buying finance products a whole lot easier when we have a comparison tool that gives you a comprehensive view of companies and prices in one easy to manage list. In fact, moneywise states that around 10 million people in the UK used comparison sites in 2012. More and more people are seeing price comparison sites as a quick and easy method for buying any financial product, especially as many save your details so that the next time you log on you don’t even need to fill in any new details. But do we take this service for granted?
Comparing cash loans products in other areas of the world
Say you are looking for a financial product like a cash loan. In countries like South Africa, many consider going to a loan site directly. If you know of a company that is reputable and well established (in South Africa the “Wonga cash loans” service is a strong favourite due to the international familiarity the brand enjoys) you might go straight to their site and apply for the product of your choice. But, if you wanted to compare their rates, you might be shocked to know that South Africa really lags behind when it comes to price comparison engines. You would have to search Wonga’s site separately to figure out their rate, before heading to another competitive company, and then again to another.
Some people may prefer doing things in this way, but others might be attractive to the simplicity and speed that a price comparison site can give. There are some search engines in South Africa – like PriceCheck and Hippo –but they’re not as slick or easy to use as our UK sites. Many people in South Africa therefore don’t have the option to compare loans and get a good price on the market.
Finding a gap in the market
JoziHub-based entrepreneur Mandla Nxumalo is a young business person who noticed this gap in the market. Four years ago, he started his own company, SOLIDred Media. This company focused on building and hosting affordable websites for companies. He used this as a base to develop a mobile app and desktop service called Direct Mulah, which is a service for customers looking for a personal cash loan. Consumers can compare different services and providers, as well as read reviews on products.
The new site was funded solely by Nxumalo’s own pocket. He says that he wants to stand out from other providers by providing a service that is transparent and honest, so that consumers receive the best service possible and come back time and time again to use the site.
In time, South Africa may be more up to speed with the UK when it comes to comparing products. After all, to receive the best rate, South Africans could be missing a trick by not comparing first.