Budget insurance has a unique set of reputation issues. It’s because of the structure of the marketplace which creates certain practices that make budget insurance brokers look like the ‘Ryanair’ of insurance.
Most budget insurance is sold through comparison sites and for anyone who has been on these sites, the prominent providers are the ones who offer the lowest price for the best cover. So brokers like Igo4 have created insurance products especially for this situation.
So when a motorist has to have insurance because it’s a legal requirement, they will often just go for the cheapest product that keeps them from being pulled up by the police.
The catch with this huge emphasis on cost, is something has to ‘give’. In the case of budget insurers it is usually service and coverage levels.
When there is a combination of legal requirement i.e. you have to do this, many unknowns and complexity with the insurance itself, you have a toxic mix that usually spills over to the internet in the form of frustrated consumers doing what they think is a service to others by giving companies like Igo4 terrible reviews online.
- The perception: Igo4 is terrible on customer service and steals your money.
- The reality: Customers ‘forget’ to give Igo4 information like correct home addresses, number of penalties on their licences and other things that affect premiums and so they buy a policy for £X but when the validation process happens it turns out the insurance premium should be £Y.
They have a choice, cancel the policy and pay a cancellation fee or pay the difference if the new policy is higher (If it’s lower, customers get a refund).
Legally Igo4 will have 28 days from when the policy has started to sort everything out. Consumers sometimes ignore the broker trying to contact them , hoping the problem will go away.
But because the broker HAS to resolve the issue, they will finally resort to withdrawing the funds from a customers account. It’s justifiable because a driver has to be insured when on the road.
With this backdrop budget insurers have a blighted reputation online.
To tackle these structural issues, Igo4 has approached the problem in four ways:
1. Consumer education
Legal regulations mean that insurance companies face being liable for drivers who are uninsured.
This has led to stricter validation processes and meant that some drivers have been denied insurance, or have had premium surcharges levied on their accounts.
iGO4 has set about educating its customers and potential customers online about these regulations so that there are fewer unpleasant surprises for everyone.
2. Say it like it is
In the past, many insurance customers have told ‘white’ lies in order to get lower premiums, changing their employment status or post code for example. Technology is wiping out this kind of approach.
When it asks for a car driver’s licence, the company insists on seeing the full document, which cuts out a lot of inaccuracies. This in turn yields lower premiums.
In marketing, we often try to gloss over the unpleasant parts of the pitch get the conversion, but Igo4 has found it’s far better to be direct with consumers and constantly remind them about how extensive the ‘know your customer’ process is.
It may not be a good sell, but this avoids many problems later.
3. Receiving complaints is a positive
The fact that customers are irritated because they have been denied coverage proves that the system is working, justifying the lower insurance premiums they offer.
4. Create some perspective
With complaint levels around 4%, or in other words 4.5/5 stars for getting the job done well, there is a push within the business to explain to consumers that in a vast, vast majority of cases everything runs smoothly.
As with all structural issues like this, where the framework for selling insurance products steers brokers towards paper thin margins and where customers are often legally obliged to buy insurance, it creates a plethora of issues that are challenging to say the least.