Insurance consumers to bypass financial advisers for online options?

by NZ Adviser11 Apr 2016
A recent survey conducted in Australia found that more than half of all Australians would buy life insurance online and bypass traditional sales agents such as financial advisers - a trend that looks set to gain momentum here in New Zealand, says independent insurance broker and director of The Portfolio Company, Des Morgan.

Australian Life insurer Noble Oak found 55% of 1100 survey respondents would buy life insurance policies over the internet, even though online products currently represent just 5% of total sales.

It was reported that around 46% said they would happily switch insurers if it resulted in lower premiums.

The indicators are that life insurance will be bought online far more often within the next five years. The numbers of people purchasing general insurance products online in Australia increased more than tenfold from about 2008 to 2013 and there appears no reason why this trend won’t be replicated with life insurance, says Morgan. 

The Portfolio Company Ltd has established an online insurance website to meet the anticipated increased demand in New Zealand.

Morgan said, “The Portfolio Company Ltd website was designed to provide New Zealanders with an option to buy life insurance, health insurance and funeral cover directly from a Life Insurance Company online. 

“The website is of a general nature only and does not constitute personalised advice. If you need individual advice you would need to contact a financial adviser.

“As we are an online company and we don’t provide individual advice, it costs us less to run our business, so we are able to pass these savings on to our customers by way of either accessing lower premiums from the insurers or providing a cash rebate on referral commissions we receive.

“With the Digital age most people are comfortable in using the internet via their Smartphone or Desktop and with this technology all they need to do is answer a few questions and in a few seconds they will have a no–obligation quote”. 

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