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5/14/2013 - Customers opt in favor of agents over technology for purchasing insurance products

Consumers enjoy using technology for business, but prefer meeting with insurance agents one-on-one to secure policies.

As convenient as the internet has come to be for current and prospective policyholders to update or purchase auto insurance as well as other types of coverage, most consumers today still overwhelmingly prefer to speak with an insurance professional, newly released survey data indicates.

According to financial services firm Accenture, which commissioned the poll, more than 75% of the 4,000 auto and homeowners insurance customers that participated in the survey said that given the choice, they'd much rather set up a plan or pay for coverage through an agent in a face-to-face setting rather than over the phone or by the web. In addition, with respect to getting information about these plans, over 55% said their preferred source was an agent.

Other less popular sources of insurance information consumers turned to were search engines and aggregators, the management consulting company revealed.

Erik Sandquist, one of Accenture's managing directors, noted that these results fly in the face of what some within the industry have come to believe - namely, that the internet is supplanting agents.

"Much has been written about young consumers - with their strong propensity for Internet, social media and mobile - fundamentally changing insurance distribution," said Sandquist.  "Our survey reveals that many young consumers desire personalized advice and are willing to pay more for it – and a significant percentage prefers to obtain their quotes face-to-face."

Workers say constructive criticism is best in-person
Other surveys have revealed similar findings. For example, a recent poll administered by Amplitude Research found that while individuals in the workplace appreciated the immediacy with which the internet enabled them to communicate with friends, co-workers and superiors, most opted in favor of speaking with others through personal encounters. Even when receiving feedback on their performance - whether positive or negative - more than 60% said a person-to-person discussion was their preference.

As a Trusted Choice agency, Selective has had a long standing relationship with a top-tier network of specialized independent agents. This partnership has enabled industry professionals to access a large pool of customers that they can provide insurance information to so customers can better their own lives and offer lasting protection for their loved ones.

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