A survey conducted among more than 1,000 UK households has revealed that 40 per cent of people would be prepared to pay more for their insurance policy if purchasing it over the phone was as quick and easy as buying online. The research, commissioned by intelligent call tracking software company ResponseTap, showed that those respondents would pay between five and 25-per-cent more for a better phone call experience.
Customers feel more secure when buying over the phone
Despite a rise in online self-service and price comparison sites, 55 per cent of respondents said they had purchased an insurance product over the phone in the last twelve months. More than 60 per cent of those who opted for the phone said they did so to feel reassured that the policy they were buying was accurate and suitable for their needs. Eighteen to 24 year-olds were the most likely to buy over the phone, with 70 per cent claiming to have done so in the past year, compared to 44 per cent of over 55s.
The results, published in a recent ResponseTap whitepaper, demonstrate huge potential for insurance companies to engage with customers and build loyalty – particularly with younger buyers – but they also highlight there is scope for the industry to do more to improve the phone experience. Almost half of those who did not make a purchase over the phone in the past twelve months were put off by the thought of having to repeat their details. Forty-two per cent of people were also deterred by Interactive Voice Response (IVR) systems – that figure rose to 65 per cent in the 18-24 year-old category.
Opportunity to improve phone call experience
Ross Fobian, CEO of ResponseTap, commented: “There’s a huge opportunity for insurance companies to improve the call centre experience, from quickly routing customers to the most knowledgeable agents rather than passing them around the call centre, to completely removing the need for IVR systems that are impersonal and a real barrier for consumers.
“This survey shows there’s an appetite for the phone, and even a willingness to pay a premium for excellent service. For younger generations, who may be making insurance purchases for the first time, this is also a chance for the industry to build loyalty in a sector often perceived as being at the mercy of the switching culture.”