Customers were ready for a new insurance experience even before coronavirus

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Throughout the coronavirus crisis, insurance companies have taken note of the widespread changes in consumer behavior as a result of social-distancing guidelines and business closures. But Capgemini’s 2020 World Insurance Report, which draws on surveys taken in January and February, before the crisis ramped up, shows that changes in behavior were coming anyway.

In 2016, 17% of consumers surveyed by Capgemini said they would be willing to buy insurance from a big tech company like Amazon, Apple or Google. In 2020, that number more than doubled to 36% of the 8,000 people surveyed. In 2019, customers looking for on-demand or usage-based insurance were 29% and 31%, respectively; this year, those went up to 31% and 51%.

Digital access and fluency is impacting consumers’ willingness to buy insurance as well, the report found. More scenarios, such as the pandemic, send customers to review their finances and send them to insurers’ websites for information.

In fact, separate Capgemini research, from the COVID-19 and the Financial Services Customer report put out earlier this month, found propensity to buy insurance growing as a result of the coronavirus crisis. Respondents to that survey of more than 11,000 customers in April found pre- and post-coronavirus interest in purchasing life insurance up 25%, health insurance up 28.5%, and general insurance products up 29%.

“Today’s competitive and fast-changing environment has been inexorably altered by the COVID-19 pandemic. Cross-generational digital adoption and the unprecedented impact of the pandemic are compelling reasons why established insurers need to transform their operating models,” said Anirban Bose, CEO of Capgemini’s Financial Services Strategic Business Unit and Member of the Group Executive Board, in a statement. “The end game will be to become the insurer that provides hyper-personalized experiences to be able to compete head on with BigTechs. There has to be a reason for consumers to choose to stay with insurers and hyper-personalization can be that reason.”

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