December 16, 2014

Motor Insurers’ Digital Marketing Effectiveness

By Paul Laughlin
insurance disclaimer

andrew steinmetz (flickr)

A new type of ‘other post. Given the number of our readers who work within the Insurance sector, I thought it might be helpful to share the results which Global Reviews shared with me, from their Digital Marketing Effectiveness Study (Q3 2014) of UK Motor Insurance providers.

There are some interesting lessons for customer insight leaders from other sectors as well, when you reflect on the key findings into consumer behaviour.

Here are the highlights:

  1. One third of consumers decide, which car insurance provider to go with, via a comparison website

While 92% of UK consumers will use a search engine at some stage of the pathway to purchase motor insurance, 87% actually start the journey there. 30% then move to the brand website, however almost half go to a comparison or aggregator site. 29% are then making the decision to purchase and stopping their journey on the aggregator site. A further 9% of those who visit provider’s site are going back to aggregator sites.

  1. Consumers appear to see the aggregator brand and the motor insurance brand as the same thing

From the “Search Acquisition Module” of the Global Reviews Digital Marketing Effectiveness programme*, where they capture every keyword searched on and every click made, they know that after “car insurance”, “compare the market” is the second most used search term – putting it before any of the other brands.  In fact the top three destination sites from consumers’ search are aggregator sites.

Motor Insurance graph




  1. Consumers use comparison sites for speed and choice

The top two reasons that consumers use aggregator sites are that 63% think it would be the easiest way to compare different options and 57% say that it is the easiest way to see a range of policies from different providers at the same time.

  1. Direct Line tops unprompted recall list

Findings from the Q3 2014 Global Reviews UK Motor Digital Marketing Effectiveness programme show just how fragmented the UK market for car insurance is. When asked to recall car insurance providers unprompted (top of mind), almost all consumers (91%) could recall at least one provider. In fact 65 brands were recalled in total. The most recalled brand was Direct Line, mentioned by 44% of those who could recall a brand, with the next most likely brands (with 40% and 37% respectively) being Aviva and Churchill.

  1. High brand recall doesn’t necessarily translate into final preference for purchase

Direct Line has the highest unprompted brand recall score with 52%. They also have the highest number of “in-market consumers” visiting their site. However, only 8% chose Direct Line as their motor insurance provider in the end. Compare this to LV=, who with an unprompted brand recall score of 16% are 36 percentage points behind Direct Line, meaning that significantly fewer consumers think of LV= when they begin their search for car insurance. However more consumers chose LV= (9%) than Direct Line (8%) in the end.

Finally, it’s also interesting to compare this UK consumer behaviour with a summary infographic on the equivalent market in Australia:

Motor-Insurance australia


I hope that was of interest. Please do comment below if you’d like more sector specific research shared here in future (from a variety of providers of course).

You can find out more on the study methodology, sample sizes and wider context at the Global Reviews site.