The death of life insurance brokers: online policies skyrocket

We’ve been given an interesting snapshot into the changing landscape of life insurance in Australia with market research company, Roy Morgan revealing that the number of policies taken out online have more than doubled over the past five years to total 349,000.

This rapid growth appears to be primarily at the cost of life insurance brokers who have lost 35% of policies (approximately 202,000) between 2012 and 2017.

Norman Morris, Industry Communications Director at Roy Morgan said the data reflects the “major transformation” that the life insurance industry is currently undergoing down under.

“How life insurance is obtained is facing a major transformation or disruption, moving away from the more traditional insurance broker (or life insurance salesman) towards purchasing online as well as moving more to the employer, where it is generally combined with superannuation,” he said.

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Indeed, the other means of nabbing a life insurance policy that experienced major growth was via employers which now represents 23.9% of total policies in the market, falling just shy of the most popular method which remains via telephone (24.7%).

While life insurance policies don’t get the same level of love as say home or car insurance, the research also delved into how likely Aussies were to use a specific avenue of finding the right policy based on certain demographics.

“Life insurance has generally been something that has needed more of a selling effort compared to motor vehicle, house and contents or health insurance. This is reflected in its much lower incidence in the Australian population,” said Morris.

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“Our data shows that there are some major differences across a range of demographics regarding the channel preference for obtaining life insurance and as a result it is important to take this into account when marketing to such a diversified group.”

Most notably, Aussies with a higher income were more likely to embrace online channels, with lower income groups preferring to pick up the phone or enter a branch in person.

To start the online journey towards a comprehensive life insurance policy head to Mozo’s life insurance comparison tables where you can compare a range of potentially perfect policies.