The reinsurance company’s study, Digital distribution in insurance: a quiet revolution, said digital technology is changing the way insurers and consumers interact with each other.
It said the Internet and mobile devices were empowering consumers who are searching, reviewing and purchasing policies without the need for intermediaries. Meanwhile, insurers are also benefiting from the rich source of data these channels were providing – helping with sales and marketing. Swiss Re claimed this digital transformation is helping insurers become more consumer-centric in their approach.
It added that the online share of premiums may still be small but sales are rising. "The statistics on e-commerce insurance mask the profound impact new technologies are having on the distribution process," said Kurt Karl, Swiss Re's chief economist.
The study found that consumers are increasingly researching online and it added that the Internet has become a trusted source of advice for insurance. It said aggregator or price comparison websites, as well as social media, are playing a growing role in the pre-sales process. Ginger Turner, co-author of the study, said: "With mobile and telematics technology, consumers can now interact with their insurance provider anytime and anywhere."