Despite automotive and homeowners insurance reaching record highs in customer satisfaction last year, the latest Dynamic Shopper research from Valassis found that about 15% of respondents are currently in-market for home, auto and life insurance. This article is copyright 2019 The Best Customer Guide.

With this in mind, insurance providers can capitalize on these potential "switchers" by understanding what they value in an agency and coverage plan. Based on data from more than 1,700 respondents, Valassis found approximately 30% of auto and homeowner insurance holders haven't reviewed their policies in many years, and 32% typically review or reconsider their plans annually.

Additionally, about 10% indicated they are prompted to reconsider their personal insurance needs by an interesting ad (and this number is even higher among parents and millennial parents). One of the biggest barriers to switching is the perception that it will be difficult to do so.

Valassis found that 25% of customers remain with an insurance company they aren't happy with because it seems too complicated to switch (this number rises to 41% among parents and 36% for millennials). Still, insurance providers have a viable opportunity to entice these consumers to switch by making the process seamless and convenient.

When selecting an insurance provider, customers look for the lowest price (56%); fast and easy claim settlement (49%); relevant service offerings (49%); and protection of personal data (47%). For those who changed providers within the last year, it was a relatively quick decision - while 91% researched their choice before switching, 45% spent a week or less doing so.

To attract as well as retain customers, insurance providers should keep in mind that, when researching personal insurance coverage options, consumers find the following most valuable:

  • Family and friends (40%).
  • Online articles and reviews (38%).
  • Mail (21%).
  • Online advertisements (20%).
  • Television ads (20%).

A cross-channel media and personalization strategy is key for today's insurance providers, as 66% of consumers feel more loyal to companies that reward with personalized discounts and offers. However, these personalization efforts should not be invasive, with RetailMeNot recently identifying which types of information today's consumers are and are not willing to share:

  • 63% like to receive insurance information in print to review and save.
  • 32% need to see multiple ad messages in both print and digital media to consider switching insurance providers.

"Insurance carriers that can make the transition to a new provider effortless while also offering wallet-friendly, personalized deals, can entice on-the-fence consumers to switch," said Curtis Tingle, Chief Marketing Officer, Valassis. "Ease, savings and timeliness are key. Insurance carriers must know when consumers are in-market - and deliver relevant communications to influence their decision."