Value was cited as the reason that almost 60% of surveyed consumers in the United States who purchased insurance through a direct channel 10 or more years ago reported switching back to an independent agent.
Most U.S. consumers return to independent agents
A study commissioned by The Hanover Insurance Group Inc., a property and casualty insurer based in Worcester, Mass., shows that most respondents who switched to direct insurers – promises of lower prices was a key motivator – later returned to an independent agent.
Conducted by InsightExpress, the study included input from 1,000 consumers who purchased insurance through direct channels 10 or more years ago.
Most consumers who switched back to independent agents cited expertise and convenience as drivers in their decision, notes a statement from The Hanover. Among other things, respondents also cited the benefits of having one point of contact to handle insurance needs and questions, the statement adds.
"The majority of respondents said their number one reason for switching from a direct insurance provider was to have someone to guide them through their insurance-buying decisions," says Mark Desrochers, president of personal lines insurance at The Hanover.
"The study shows that consumers realize the value that independent agents bring. That's why we deliver our products exclusively through agents," adds Dick Lavey, president of field operations and chief marketing officer at The Hanover.
Source: Canadian Underwriter