Brand loyalty is down. According to Campaign US, a study found that brand loyalty dropped in 2020 as consumers struggled with economic problems and supply chain issues. Between March and November, the brand loyalty measure decreased from 65% to 49%. The insurance sector has not been immune to this trend. The J.D. Power 2021 U.S. Insurance Shopping Study found that auto insurance shopping increased during the pandemic.
But even before the pandemic, brand loyalty was eroding. In 2019, Forbes reported on a study that found that brand retention was decreasing, and two-thirds of consumers said they would switch to a competitor for a better customer experience.
Customers are less loyal, and that means companies need to step up their retention efforts. It’s time to take a serious look at the insurance customer journey you’re providing. If there’s friction, you need to smooth it out.
To identify possible points of friction, ask yourself two questions.
Question One: Where Are You Losing Customers?
Think about where you tend to lose customers. Is it during the application process? While they’re policyholders? After a claim? Knowing this can help you identify where things are going wrong.
If you’re losing customers before a claim, your problem might be your customer service. HubSpot Research found that 82% of consumers say that getting an immediate response is important or very important when they have a marketing or sales question. When it’s a customer service question, that figure jumps to 90%. Consumers cite waiting on hold and having to repeat information to different support representatives as the two most frustrating aspects of customer service.
If you’re losing policyholders after a claim, the problem might be that you’re taking too long to resolve claims. The J.D. Power 2021 U.S. Property Claims Satisfaction Study found that increased use of digital claims tools has resulted in faster payments, and that’s helped drive satisfaction to record-highs. This is good, but it also means that the bar is being raised. As digital tools continue to speed up the claims process, customers will come to expect faster and faster resolutions.
Question Two: What Are Customers Saying?
You can also identify friction by seeing what customers are saying. Customer surveys are one way to do this, but some customers may decide not to participate, and they may even see the surveys as an annoyance. Another tactic is to monitor what people are saying about your company online.
A report from CFI Group found that 36% of respondents share details about the customer service experiences, and many do so on social media. Of those who share their experiences, 39% use Facebook, 15% use Instagram, 15% use YouTube and 13% use Twitter.
Smoothing out the Points of Friction
Once you know the source of friction, you can work on making the customer journey smoother. Often, this will come down to finding the right tools, processes, and resources to make touchpoints faster and more convenient.
For example, are you losing customers after a claim? You may need better FNOL support. Are you losing customers during periods of high volume? You may need scalable backup customer service support or expand the channels available for support.
Remember – if you’re not delivering an excellent insurance customer journey, your customers’ journey might take them straight to your competitor.
Remove Friction Points by Outsourcing to Covenir