European-wide research by IT services company CMG has shown that the insurance sector is now lagging a long way behind other industries involved in e-commerce.

The Index from CMG's monitors e-commerce behaviour and trends in the UK, France, Netherlands and Germany. It analyses the percentage of companies generating more than one per cent of revenue through e-commerce.

The latest figures show the insurance sector (at eight per cent) is behind banking (12%), utilities and telecoms (15%), retail (18%) and logistics (25%).

The index also shows that most traditional major insurance brands are failing abysmally to make the switch into becoming well-known internet brands.

Researchers spoke to 250 leading organisations, split evenly between those employing between 200-999 staff and those employing over 1,000.

Respondents were asked to vote on which company web site they found the most effective. Insurer sites received no votes.

CMG's e-commerce director, David Bailey, said: "On-land brands are failing to make the transition to on-line brands, with a few notable exceptions.

"To ignore e-commerce is not merely to stand still, but to fall behind."