4 ways to digitally enhance an insurtech customer experience
Insurtechs run the risk of cannibalising their own mission to boost coverage by getting sidetracked focusing on the latest and greatest technology.
These folks may advertise an end-to-end digital experience, but behind their slick customer-facing portals, they struggle to overcome the same problems that established insurers still face: a broken customer experience.
If an insurtech platform delivers a digitised version of a broken process, shoppers may be deterred by the same pain points that they were hoping to avoid by going with the more modern insurer. This might mean that shoppers are required to fill out a series of confusing forms that don’t apply to their industry or even be required to pick up the phone and wait in a queue to secure the quote they got online. Spoiler: neither experience leads to conversions.
As the Chief Marketing Officer and company co-founder, I’m a fervent advocate for putting small business owners and their customer experience (CX) at the center of insurtech product design. At B2Z, we provide digital, self-driven business insurance to small business owners by amassing digital intelligence through vast amounts of data, then leveraging it to streamline their insurance experience. That’s because our audience doesn’t have time to pick up the phone and wait to talk to an agent or chase emails over days or weeks waiting for a coverage decision.
1. Excel where others fall short
To understand where you can improve your CX, start by auditing the current insurance experience for potential customers in your target market. By identifying the common touchpoints and locations along the customer journey where the competition falls short, you can also find opportunities to pull ahead.
At B2Z, we found that most policy offerings were cumbersome and incomplete, but there were two major pain points we saw time and again:
- Irrelevant questions led shoppers to question whether they were applying for the right product. Small business owners could receive a quote after answering questions in an online form, but the process wasn’t tailored to their business. For example, pet retailers would be asked about liquor sales at their establishment.
- Shoppers couldn’t complete the process entirely online. Even after they were promised a completely digital experience, too many small business owners were required to follow up over the phone to secure coverage.
Why are these such serious issues? Small business owners are busy people. More than 70% of them work more than 40 hours per week as they fill a variety of different roles across their organizations.
This disjointed process left busy entrepreneurs with coverage gaps or uninsured altogether: over 70% of small businesses are underinsured, and 40 percent aren’t insured at all. And having the right kind of insurance can be the difference between a business shutting its doors or enduring. This landscape created an opportunity for thoughtful technology to improve the customer experience.
2. Use technology to solve pain points
In the property and casualty space, insurtechs can shrink expense ratios to almost 40% lower than those of traditional insurers. But they don’t do this by implementing technology for technology’s sake. Instead, they identify and target specific areas where tech can improve the customer experience and they strategically design the right solution for their customers’ needs.
Our work with chatbot design is a great example of how insurtechs can leverage innovative tech to differentiate their products and services.
Most insurtech chatbots are equipped to answer simple, formulaic questions you’d find in the FAQ section of their website. While this type of bot helps shoppers and customers access the right information at the right time, their limited natural language processing capabilities too often means customers must input the exact keywords to get a helpful response.
After examining where other chatbots fell short, B2Z developed Diya, a digital guide to small business insurance. During the application process, Diya chimes in at potentially challenging moments to ensure small business owners quickly secure the right coverage.
For example, when asked to select their business classification code, customers can type, “I cut hair” and select from relevant codes for barbershops or beauty salons.
By being purposeful about implementing new technologies, insurtechs can streamline the customer experience and differentiate themselves from others in the space.
3. Align your CX with customer expectations
The pressure is on for insurtechs to match the digital experience customers now expect when they shop for groceries or refill their prescriptions.
The COVID-19 pandemic changed behaviors and accelerated customer expectations for entirely digital experiences (which have existed since at least 2015). In the US, 73% of customers have tried new shopping behaviours since June 2020 and over 75% intend to continue them.
To achieve this, insurtechs must leverage data to streamline the customer experience. At B2Z, we leverage our digital intelligence to help small businesses quickly identify the right coverage options based on the risks within their industry.
For example, to gauge the right level of coverage for a contractor, we need to know whether their employees regularly work on platforms more than 15 feet off the ground. Rather than asking the business owner to provide this information, we leverage third-party data, and our algorithms review county records of similar businesses.
Then, by collating this information with millions of other contractors across the country, we can automatically match their business up to an existing model from an underwriting perspective. This leaves the customer with fewer questions to answer manually, streamlining the customer experience and shortening the application process to as little as five minutes.
By drawing from all available data sources, insurers can deliver a speedy, fully digital customer experience while holistically evaluating customer risks.
4. Every digital touchpoint is an opportunity to enhance the customer experience
As insurers rush to adopt new technology, incumbents and insurtechs don’t consider how their decisions will impact the customer experience.
By taking stock of the competition, implementing new tools that are designed for a specific purpose, and using data to gauge customer expectations (and design to meet them), you can keep your customers at the centre of an increasingly digital experience.
About the author: Stephanie N. Blahut is CMO and Co-Founder at B2Z Insurance. B2Z Insurance is a new small business insurance company that provides coverage for on-the-go business owners: simple explanations, easy application, digital quotes, and mobile claims. Stephanie is a seasoned digital marketing professional whose experience spans the insurance, publishing, and software industries. As B2Z’s CMO she leads their digital-first customer acquisition and marketing strategy.
The Ultimate FinTech & InsurTech LIVE Event
Whether you attend virtually or in person, it will give you the chance to network with C-Level executives, share ideas with industry pioneers, and walk away with actionable, unique insights to bolster your business and career.
By the end of the three-day event, you will have seen the latest innovations in both FinTech and InsurTech. You will be able to see how companies like yours are tackling the problems that keep you up at night, engage in a community that many struggle to access, and share your ideas with people who care as much as you do.
How can you attend?
In the post-Covid era, not everybody wants to travel for events. So FinTech and InsurTech Live will be completely hybrid. That means you can attend the event in person or virtually - with no disadvantages to people who don’t make the trip to the Tobacco Dock.
FinTech and InsurTech Live is happening in the Tobacco Dock in London, a ten-minute walk from Tower Bridge. For more information on the location, click here.
There’s no need to worry about missing out if you choose not to attend in person. You can still absorb all the information, interact with other attendees and enjoy the conference experience on our virtual platform.
There will be live feeds from all of the stages (also available on-demand after the event) as well as virtual networking areas. So not being able to travel is no reason to miss your chance to gather with the industry.
What’s on the agenda?
With keynote addresses from global leaders, dynamic roundtable discussions, and extensive networking opportunities, FinTech & InsurTech 2021 will expand your network, deliver insight, and enhance your organisation’s reach.
Across the three-day event, a number of relevant topics and trends surrounding fintech and insurtech will be discussed.
- Tuesday 14 October - Diversity and Inclusion
- Racial equality (11:30 am)
- Supplier diversity (12:00 pm)
- Sustainability (12:30 pm)
- Women in fintech (14:30 pm)
- Wednesday 15 October - Challenger and neobanks
- Cashless society (14:00 pm)
- SMEs (14:30 pm)
- Thursday 16 October - Adopting new-age digital solutions in the insurance industry (06:00 am)
Influential executives from around the world will give their insights and professional experiences surrounding these topics, allowing you and your company to leave with valuable information.
The topics surrounding digital transformation should certainly be on the mind of every executive after the events of 2020 and how we all had to adapt to meet customer’s needs. Creating a digital roadmap is key, and making changes to the traditional ways of working. Customers now have new needs, and keeping up to speed with the digital changes, whilst also doing so safely, are important.
If you want to get leading perspectives on the future of fintech and insurtech, you can purchase your tickets here.