We discovered that 33% of insurance customers switched providers in the last 12 months. This tells us something is missing — and there is a huge cost-savings opportunity on the table for insurers when it comes to stepping up their service delivery. Recognizing these gaps in customer service is essential for improving insurance customer retention.
As you’re probably aware, insurance can feel like a disconnected industry. Policyholders can hear from many different people — contact center agents, service managers, and agents and brokers — often making it hard for them to get the kind of attention they want.
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Shockingly, insurance executives do not necessarily recognize this service gap. We recently conducted a survey on customer service with Industry Dive, finding that 60% of executives said that their customers are either mostly or extremely satisfied. This leaves many agents questioning how they can get better at insurance customer retention.
If you’ve dealt with lots of client turnover lately, it might be time to examine your approach and see if you can improve and innovate your customer service.
Let’s take a look at three ways insurance companies can switch up their strategies to keep their clients happy — and on board.
Improve insurance customer retention by anticipating clients’ needs
Growing a client base is critical, but so is customer retention. Connecting data sources in real time helps agents expect client needs before things become an issue.
According to our survey, 76% of insurance executives reported that customer inquiries initiated through one channel are visible to agents in other business areas. However, only 24% of execs said that customer requests to mid-to-back-office agents are fully connected and integrated. And 56% report that only some functions are connected — but not all.
When all departments are able to see timely data through consolidated systems, your company has a better view of the customers’ needs. You can reach out to clients based on their needs now, not what they said when they signed up.
For example, things like a new address or the addition of a new car can mean changes to an insurance policy. Anticipating their needs when these things change and alerting clients lets them know you’re looking out for them beyond the onboarding.
These calls are an excellent opportunity for agents to ask if they meet their clients’ expectations and gain insight into ways to boost insurance customer retention. Customers do not always have the time to take the initiative to offer their input. Asking them is another way to find out what is on their minds.
Offer a human touch
Six in 10 insurance executives told us that when their customers have a question, they are most likely to directly contact someone they’ve previously talked with. This is an opportunity for agents to become educators.
Customer calls allow agents to put a human touch on confusing insurance policies or claims that can involve big life moments. Through education, you can get customers to believe that better coverage exists. It also makes it more likely they will stay and protect themselves with extra policies.
By automating data entry and other time-consuming processes through Salesforce, Holmes Murphy freed their representatives to focus more on offering personalized customer service. Automation enabled Holmes Murphy to simplify the renewal process for customers. This increased renewal speeds by roughly 20x, saved about 44,000 hours of employee time, and eliminated an estimated $1.1 million in cost.
Be everywhere your clients are
Phone service is critical, but insurance executives recognize that there’s a need to talk with customers where they want to communicate.
In our survey, 50% of executives said web experience is one area where their company should focus attention. Additionally, 46% said the mobile experience is a priority, while 42% listed app development.
Better communication opportunities help agents reach more clients. Try asking your clients about different methods of communication to see which ones they prefer. Take note and make that the primary method moving forward. Personal touches like these also help with insurance customer retention.
Keep your clients happy and on board
While insurance is an industry that is sometimes known for customer “switching,” it doesn’t have to be. How can you increase insurance client retention?
Providing excellent customer service, thinking innovatively, and offering the latest technology gives agencies a competitive edge — and keeps customers satisfied for the long run.
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Discover what insurance executives really think about how their agencies are delivering customer service.