Google research has revealed three new types of customers - and one expert believes that they could have a powerful impact on the insurance industry.
Google has mined its troves of data over the past two years, back to July 2017, and found that customer experiences and expectations are changing, giving an insight into how the future of the customer may look – and in the process allowing brokers and insurers the chance to futureproof their businesses.
Speaking at the Insurance Business Insurtech Summit last week, Aamer Fattah, research innovation and development specialist at Munich Re, discussed the research and the three “mega-trends” in the development of customers as they become more curious, demanding and impatient.
“Customer searches through Google for product reviews were up by 35% over that period,” Fattah told attendees.
“Customers are increasingly curious, they want to well-informed. More importantly, they are looking at product reviews and they want to know: is your product or service worth my time and money?”
Customers that fall into the more demanding category expect a business to already know information about them by utilising either first or third party data.
“These are the customers that expect you to know already – they know they are sharing some data or a lot of data with you and they have given you permission to access this data and they expect these services to be tailored to them right here, right now,” Fattah continued.
Google research found that searches for ‘what is the best… for me’ have risen by over 60% over the past two years.
The biggest trend, however, is the rise of the impatient customer. With digital devices and mobile searches now commonplace, Google saw a 300% rise in searches related to what businesses are open now.
Fattah said that while these three customer types present challenges, they also offer opportunities for the insurance industry to improve its customer experience.
“With the curious customer, for example, they create opportunity to find new ways to answer their questions,” Fattah continued.
“For the demanding customer, it is finding new ways to deliver the right information at the right time, and for the impatient customer it is shifting strategies to keep up with customers.”
While technology will play a part in meeting these changing customer needs, Fattah said “enablers” such as insurance expertise, human centred design and user experience research, among others, will also be needed.
“The technical capabilities are important to create customer experiences that will delight the curious, demanding and impatient customers - but also, you really need creativity,” Fattah said. “It is a bit like origami, it is harder than it looks - but if you can pull it all together you can create some amazing experiences for customers.”