‘There is something about this online experience that is not speaking to the younger demographic’, says business architect

Younger insurance customers – defined as those under the age of 35 – prefer human interaction when buying insurance, according to Sollers Consulting’s latest research.

Some of the firm’s key findings were presented during a presentation hosted last week (9 February 2023) by Sollers Consulting and Guidewire that examined UK customer behaviours and expectations when buying insurance.

Hubert Młodzianowski, business architect at Sollers Consulting, told attendees that the reason for younger customers’ aversion to wholly online experiences was that they were “afraid of the small print, the process or products”.

On the flipside, older customers were more likely to demand more in terms of claims and policy modification. 

Mlodzikowski added: “You can understand why, they are more experienced, they have seen more and this is more of an everyday occurence for them.”

Study results

Sollers’ study focused on how technology impacted the insurance customer by surveying 800 UK policyholders in the fourth quarter of 2022.

Młodzianowski continued: “There is something about this online experience that is not speaking to the younger demographic.”

Three quarters (75%) of the 800 respondents said that they owned an insurance policy or had purchased one recently – of these, only half said that they had some kind of interaction with their insurer over the past 12 months.

The most popular policies purchased by the respondents were motor comprehensive at 69% and household insurance at 64% – pet insurance was the least popular insurance product among respondents, with only 28% having taken out this type of cover.

Młodzianowski also highlighted that UK customers were more cautious about buying insurance policies via a bank due to numerous miss-selling scandals. 

Younger customers, higher expectations 

Roi Amir, chief executive of Sprout.ai, told Insurance Times: ”The research from Sollers Consulting goes to show how much customer attitudes and expectations are changing when it comes to their insurance policy and experience. Sollers Consulting found that younger customers prefer human interaction compared to their older, more experienced counterparts.

”Our research at Sprout.ai found similar results – younger customers have higher expectations of customer service than older insurance customers. Of the those we surveyed, one in five insurance customers expected claims to be resolved in hours, and 100% of 18-24 year olds expected a resolution within one week. However, the reality is that 43% of customers waited over two weeks for their insurance claim to be resolved.

”Research has shown that Generation Z has a spending power of $360bn (£297bn). If traditional insurers hope to make the most of this spending power and attract and retain this customer base, they need to adapt to their preferences or risk losing customers to industry challengers. By embracing new technologies such as AI [artificial intelligence], claims are solved at a fraction of the time, meaning that claims handlers have the time for that all-important direct interaction with their customers when they are at their most vulnerable.”