According to recent reports, Internet penetration in India grew from a mere 0.53% in 2000 to 19% in 2014. Internet users are predicted to reach the 330 million mark by the year 2016.
The essence of technology is to simplify things and if it does not do that, there is an issue. Fortunately, the technology that has driven the shift from offline to online insurance is based on a simple model, which is easy to understand and use.
Insurance seekers did not doubt the viability and convenience associated with purchasing insurance online. The major hurdle was lack of investor education and payment security. In 2015, where social media is influencing the way people perceive brands, synchronization of Internet, smart phones and insurance company's drive to put their customer's interest first has caused the entire industry to go digital.
Insurance companies have leveraged technology to build a foolproof payment model and educate insurance seekers through various channels like e-mailers, articles, blogs, news, newsletters and much more.
The online insurance segment offers simple products that are easy to understand and answer all the important questions that buyers might have. They also offer useful tools and intuitive calculators to help buyers decide.
For example, while renewing a motor policy on the insurance company's website, insurers can learn about the features and benefits of the various add-ons available with their basic motor insurance policy within a few clicks.
Push vs. Pull
The offline segment often appears to be pushing insurance sales, whereas in the online insurance it is the pull factor that comes into play. Insurance seekers willingly log on to the company's website, research information and purchase the policy in a hassle-free manner. If they require any assistance, there are dedicated informative sections besides the 24x7 helpline and the live chat feature.
Tech-savvy Target Audience
The age group of 25-40 uses Internet, has the purchasing power and is financially savvy. They are the ones who are building their careers, managing a young family, purchasing a dream house and want to save time.
The need for a quick, no-fuss, simple product has given rise to online insurance policies without medical tests, renewals with reminders and professional online assistance and much more.
Along with E-commerce, M-commerce is also on the rise. Insurance companies have extended their online insurance platform on mobile devices through applications. One can download an app from a smart phone and perform functions like purchasing, renewing and learning about insurance policies through your handset.
Thus, the shift from offline to online insurance can be attributed to the increased investor education, convenience associated with online shopping, eradication of the agents and the tech-savvy target audience. Going by the trend, this technological revolution will continue to evolve and present better opportunities in the form of more convenient insurance purchase measures to cater to the needs of insurance seekers.