A new LIMRA and Swiss Re study of insurance consumers in China reveals that many insurance buyers like the personal touch of traditional channels but recent trends suggest an increase in online sales.
The report, The Chinese Insurance Consumer, looks at eight different personal insurance products such as, life, individual health, critical illness, etc. and the distribution channels consumers used to purchase those products.
Looking at activity within the last decade, 56 percent of insurance purchases were made through an agent. Banks were the channel of choice for 13 percent and insurers’ websites accounted for eight percent of buying activity.
The past year saw a big shift with 40 percent of Chinese consumers saying they purchased insurance from an insurer’s website. Only 23 percent said they bought from an agent and 13 percent from a bank.
Because direct online sales are still limited in China, researchers took a second look at the sudden growth of buyers who said they purchased directly from an insurer’s website. A buyer’s initial engagement may have involved online activities such as, visiting a company website, requesting a quote or having an agent contact them.