Home Business NewsBusiness Does the UK sharing economy work? Take a look at these stats…

Does the UK sharing economy work? Take a look at these stats…

20th Sep 16 11:52 am

Trustpilot study reveals interesting stats

Almost half of people (47 per cent) in the UK believe that sharing economy schemes benefit consumers, a new research has found.

A survey from Trustpilot has shown a variety of aspects of the sharing economy.

The survey finds that over a quarter (29 per cent) of people have previously avoided using a sharing economy platform because of a lack of clarity on who would hold responsibility when something goes wrong.

When asked if, as the end-user, they should hold part of the responsibility when making a booking through a sharing economy website, 40 per cent agreed. Respondents were also presented with a variety of hypothetical sharing economy scenarios and asked to assess who would be responsible. Opinion on who should hold ultimate responsibility when something goes wrong differs depending on the type of platform and the scenario, however there is strong consensus on the role of online reviews to help raise trust:

●    36 per cent say they feel the owner of the property should be ultimately responsible should a property rental advertised on a sharing economy platform or website be different to that advertised or photographed online

●    39 per cent say the end user should be responsible if a property rental or other product from a sharing economy platform or website is damaged by the end user during loan or rental

●    Almost a third (32 per cent) believe the sharing economy website/platform or provider should be ultimately responsible if prices for a sharing economy product/service are different than advertised or if the end-user is overcharged

●    Over half (57 per cent) say online reviews help or would help to influence their choice when purchasing a product or service from a sharing economy platform. A similar amount (55 per cent) say positive reviews in particular would help them feel more confident about the service or product in question

●    42 per cent say they would usually wait until a friend or family member has used a sharing economy scheme before using it themselves

The survey also looked into the various types of sharing schemes and reveals that property rental sharing services (such as Airbnb) are the most popular type of sharing economy service with over half of people (58 per cent) saying they have used or would consider using property rental sharing services.

This is in contrast to private car loan services and car sharing schemes (such as Zipcar) which rank lowest in terms of consumer popularity, with just over a quarter (28 per cent) of people saying they have used or would consider using these.

James Westlake, UK VP at Trustpilot comments on the findings “It’s clear that sharing economy models can provide a huge amount of benefit to consumers. These schemes can often work out cheaper, and they can offer more choice and flexibility. However, the lines are blurred in terms of who holds responsibility when things go wrong. As our research shows, for these models to work, everyone, including the end user, needs to hold part of the responsibility. It’s no wonder this can seem daunting for many people.

“However, online reviews can play a key role in addressing these concerns. Spending time researching websites, products, services and providers will help mitigate risks. Online reviews provide a huge wealth of information and can help you make informed choices by learning from the first hand experiences of others.”

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