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India InsurTech Thought Leadership

New Digital Insurance Sales Channels: The Need of The Hour

New Digital Insurance Sales Channels: The Need of The Hour

Selling insurance has never been an easy business. While there are many opportunities, the fact is that this sector is also high on competition. With several insurers offering similar products and services, the challenge centers around making your product seen and purchased by potential customers. While digital technology has substantially expanded the reach and operational capabilities of insurance companies, it is still not easy to scale your sales if you don’t find your way through the maze quickly.

Technology has made it possible for anyone from any location to go online, find out every detail about the insurance products needed, and to purchase them online. On the flip side, it has made things difficult for the conventional insurance agents as digital platforms make any in-person meetings and product selling unnecessary. A person could simply browse through the policies and buy one while on his commute to work or simply relaxing in the safety of their home.

In such a scenario, it is advisable to embrace technology-driven insurance selling wholeheartedly. Modern insurance companies are increasingly focusing on the integration of digital selling platforms to generate numbers, especially in the post-pandemic times.

Insurance companies as advisors

It is well known that insurance policies and terms are quite confusing for any normal consumer. Irrespective of the type of insurance policy being sold, there are very few chances that the customer will be fully aware of all the options available. That’s why it becomes quite a challenge for the buyer to find the right policy from the right company.

As the insurance sellers increasingly use online channels, they also play the role of educators and advisors instead of merely being insurance agents. When as an insurance seller, you help the potential buyers understand the functioning of the policies and work with them to offer products that specifically address their needs, you gain their respect and trust.

An advisory role by an insurance agent or company would make the customers perceive the agent or company as a leading brand with market expertise and also as a trustworthy brand that aims to fulfil their needs.

Multi-channel service integration

Another key technology-driven change in insurance sales has been the emergence of multi-channel service integration. The behavior patterns of an insurance buyer in the digital era are not much different from the preferences of an online shopper. That’s why a holistic approach to a technology-driven sales process has to be adopted.

For instance, the first point of contact is usually where the potential buyers interact with a brand to find out more about the various insurance options available, their benefits and eligibilities, etc. This information-sharing role is nowadays managed by social media interactions, emailers, and digital advertising, etc. Consumers might use any of the company’s online locations across social media to find answers to their queries.  At times, as a customer, one would find a great advertisement or special offer email on the type of insurance that he would be looking for.

The advertising or promotional information would invariably lead the buyer through the sales funnel to the company’s own website or an insurance marketplace portal. The websites and marketplace platforms allow the end-users to either directly buy a policy online by sharing a few details and making a digital payment. The process is usually quite breezy and takes much less time compared to applying offline and manually filling the forms.

If the customers wish to know more, they can engage with the AI-powered chatbots which are nowadays available to respond to queries on almost all major insurance websites. Digital calculation tools allow the buyers to zero in on the right coverage and premium that meets their requirements. Subsequently, the buyer might decide to get contacted by an insurance salesperson before making the policy purchase.

The post-purchase formalities and customer support are also available online through digital tools embedded in the websites or mobile apps of insurance companies or aggregator platforms. Thus, by putting in place a multi-channel digital sales framework that integrates marketing, information sharing, policy sales, and customer support seamlessly, a company can increase its insurance sales numbers.

In conclusion

This is the new era of technology-driven insurance. Customers now expect to get all the information, service, and support digitally in a simple, efficient, transparent, and affordable manner. Thus, the companies which digitally integrate different sales channels and technologies to provide the best experience to customers are going to enjoy greater growth!

Author: Prerak Sethi, Co-Founder: India InsurTech Association (IIA)

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed within this article are the personal opinions of the author. The facts and opinions appearing in the article do not reflect the views of IIA and IIA does not assume any responsibility or liability for the same.

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