Why isn't Bill Hero free?

Comparison sites only pretend to work for you. The true customers of a comparison site are the vendors who pay them. Vendors pay in order to acquire you as a customer. Which makes you the product.

Why isn't Bill Hero free?
Photo by Melissa Walker Horn / Unsplash

We get asked all the time Why isn't Bill Hero free like comparison sites? When we ask in response 'Well, we need to fund this service somehow ... how do you think the comparison sites make their money?', we get a lot of mostly confused answers.

Which makes us think it's worth explaining the detail of how comparison sites actually work, what's different about Bill Hero, and why Bill Hero is a service worth paying for.

There's a bit to understand, but the fundamental point is this: If you're not paying for the service, then you're the product.

Bill Hero is a savings service, not a comparison site. With Bill Hero you're the customer, not the product, and our only financial incentive is to deliver you a valuable savings service. We guarantee you'll save more than the service costs, plus you'll get ongoing peace of mind that Bill Hero is constantly looking after your energy bills for you.

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Comparison sites operate on a 'panel' model. The panel is the group of retailers or vendors that the comparison site has commercial relationships with, and whose products they will display. Most comparison sites have very small panels, with only a few retailers, when there are actually about 40 retailers out there competing for your business.

Those commercial relationships will include commissions paid to the comparison provider on any sales that are completed through the service, often with bonus payments or higher rates associated with sales targets and volume thresholds.

It's common for those commercial relationships to also include advertising, promotional or positional payments where the retailers will pay fees for preferential placement in the comparison site, or for other forms of preferential treatment.

There are some important ramifications of this business model:

  • Comparison sites rely on commissions and fees from vendors for their revenues, which means the vendors are their customers, not you
  • Like all businesses, comparison sites need to keep their customers happy in order to safeguard their revenue streams and maintain a viable business
  • The way to keep a vendor happy is to help them sell more. Comparison sites have incentives to sell as much product as they can
  • Which means that comparison sites will only ever show you products from the vendors on their panel, even when there will be other products available and relevant for you. This often means being shown products from only a small handful of the possible providers
  • And comparison sites may also artificially promote particular products and vendors in order to maximise the potential commissions or advertising revenue they can achieve, even if they have a more suitable product for you in their panel.

So the simple reality is that comparison sites don't really compare the market, and you or I can't really use these sites to select the best deal.

Comparison sites only pretend to work for you. The true customers of a comparison site are the vendors who pay them. Vendors pay in order to acquire you as a customer. Which makes you the product.


Bill Hero does not seek and does not accept any payments whatsoever from the retailers and vendors whose products you can compare through our service.

All of our revenue is via subscriptions from people just like you, and our only strategy is to keep our subscribers happy by providing great service and helping them get the best possible outcomes.

Bill Hero is not a comparison site. We're a Savings Service, and we work for you, not for them.

At Bill Hero, we believe there is a viable role to play and business to develop as a genuinely buyer-aligned intermediary. Unlike comparison sites which really exist to help sellers sell more, Bill Hero is here to help buyers buy better.

That's why Australia's premiere consumer advocacy organisation CHOICE has partnered with Bill Hero to offer Bill Hero for CHOICE.

We know that 'Buying better' can mean a lot of things. We're starting with an unambiguous focus on dollar savings, and will be introducing additional non-price attributes into our service over time. After all, everyone is interested in price, but not to the exclusion of other important things like service, quality, and environmental responsibility.

Bill Hero's mission is to genuinely work to support your interests in finding and buying these kinds of products on your terms, not theirs.


Bill Hero is worth paying for because it delivers a valuable service to subscribers.

Our Savings Guarantee means we'll find you more annualised savings on your very first switch than the price of an entire annual subscription. If we can't, you'll pay nothing at all. So you're in front right from the start.

But we offer more than just dollar savings on your bills. We offer the peace of mind that you get from having an expert look after your bills for you, an expert that is always on, and is 100% working on your side.

And we've made it as easy as possible to get started with Bill Hero. Step one is to pre-authorise your subscription payment and upload your bill. We'll only actually process that payment after we've analysed your bill, and only if we find savings greater than the Savings Guarantee.

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