Website’s managing director expects double-edged service to convert 25% of visitors into buyers
Moneyextra.com plans to shake up the price comparison market by launching an online insurance aggregator backed up by a call centre.
Moneyextra, which offers price comparison on a range of financial products, currently has an insurance site but customers searching for quotes are put through to Confused.com.
Richard Mason, the company’s managing director, said Moneyextra’s new insurance site would convert more online visitors into buyers, and would use that extra money to keep prices competitive.
“This is the next generation of aggregators and they will have to compete with us, not us with them.
“None of them has call centre back-up. Consumers just have to get by – even though 40% want to speak to somebody before they buy insurance.”
The site, set to launch within the next four weeks, aims to convert more customers by simplifying navigation and data input.
For example, many aggregators put customers through to an insurer’s website to complete the final stages of purchasing cover.
But the Moneyextra site will keep the consumer within its own website at all times. If there are any questions, the customer can phone the call centre.
“We are building functionality into our environment. Consumers do not like like to find that they have to go through to a different place. They can buy cover in our environment,” Mason said.
He said he would draw on his experience as insurance director at Moneysupermarket.com, which he left last year.
A television campaign to promote the new site was in the pipeline and the company was also investing in Google search engine technology to direct online traffic to Moneyextra.
“Insurance aggregators convert about 15% of traffic into revenue. We are aiming for 25%. You can pay for more on Google for traffic, because you are converting more,” said Mason.
Meanwhile, he said that Tescocompare.com and Beatthatquote.com have decided to join the Comparison Consortium, which he currently runs. The consortium was set up this year as a trade body to represent aggregators’ interests.
One of its key aims is to respond to FSA criticism that aggregators misinform and make too many assumptions about customers.