There’s a severe knowledge gap among P&C policyholders regarding their policy details, coverage levels and deductible settings. Remote user experience testing conducted by Corporate Insight in early May uncovered the gap. Our latest report analyzes those user tests in full.

We moderated seven one-hour interviews with auto insurance customers. Respondents interacted with the live version of four insurance websites:

  • Allstate
  • GEICO
  • Liberty Mutual
  • Progressive

All respondents owned a policy at one of the four insurers. We asked them to log in to their own policy first. We then rotated the order of stimulus to avoid bias. Respondents collectively viewed auto insurance as a fungible commodity. Cost was the most important consideration to the individuals we spoke with.

The respondents also exhibited a high degree of unfamiliarity with their insurance websites. Many repeatedly noted that they would call customer service instead of performing the actions online when they were unable to quickly locate desired information. In a landscape with so much opportunity for improvement, insurers with well-organized and digestible policy information presented in an intuitive format can cement themselves as industry leaders.

The following three recommendations can help insurers better educate and engage with policyholders and separate themselves from the competition:

Draw policyholder attention with graphics and other visual elements

Insurers with best-in-class websites all go the extra mile to enliven and enrich policy information pages with different colors, icons and resources. In user testing, respondents were visibly more engaged by coverage pages like those offered by Liberty Mutual, which feature multiple colors, icons and charts of some data points. Their time spent on these kinds of pages contrasted sharply with coverage pages that simply offer an itemized list of coverages and no help resources.

Liberty Mutual Your Coverages Page Use of Color, Graphics and Icons

Offer educational tools and resources to bridge the knowledge gap among P&C policyholders

Respondents in our study demonstrated minimal savvy regarding their coverages and deductible settings. When asked to review their deductibles with the aim of saving money, most actually lowered their deductible, thus raising their premiums. Further, multiple respondents reported copying previous levels or simply accepting the default settings when buying a new car.

At the most basic level, when insurers list policy coverages, they should supplement the information with term definitions. This is a feature that close to three-quarters (72%) of coverage group firms provide. To truly combat this knowledge gap among P&C policyholders, carriers need to get creative and include more robust educational resources and coverage tools that break down policy questions into digestible scenarios.

Promote applied policy discounts and connect them to premium savings

In our 2019 P&C Consumer Survey, nearly half (47%) of respondents who planned to switch insurers at the next renewal date cited the primary reason as their “current insurer is too expensive.” This response blows away the second- and third-most common reasons to switch: changing insurance needs (19%) and a bad claims experience (16%).

Nearly half (47%) of respondents who planned to switch insurers at the next renewal date cited the primary reason as their “current insurer is too expensive”

The COVID-19 pandemic and record levels of unemployment will only increase consumers’ already sky-high price sensitivity. Insurers therefore need to aggressively promote how their policyholders are already saving money through applied discounts and how they can save even more cash through available discounts.

We asked our UX test respondents how they could save more money. Upon navigating to their insurers’ discounts page or section, many were surprised to discover that several discounts were already applied to their policy. It is critical that carriers go beyond a simple list of discounts and include the premium savings amount associated with each discount, something that less than one-third (28%) of insurers do.

USAA Discounts & Savings Summary

For more insight into this knowledge gap among P&C policyholders, CI subscribers can access the full report on our client site. Or, learn more about our P&C Insurance Monitor research services and our digital audit.

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