Articles - 4 min read

Customer experience and retention

AUTHOR Lou Crane

DATE Jun 2022


Every business wants to keep their customers, and selling to an engaged one is always easier than acquiring new. However, it’s much better to win their loyalty through a great experience rather than apathy.

The insurance sector knows this only too well and is probably just behind energy suppliers and banks for apathy-led business. But why does this industry find retention to be an issue?

Well, there’s always the risk of a shiny new offer to tempt a customer away and it had always been a complaint that loyal customers never got as good a deal as the newbies. But if we assess the retention rates, we can see that counter-intuitively, the returning customers tended to stay longer when the renewal prices were higher. Those companies (referring to motor insurance) who gave “an average than higher price rise at renewal still had a significantly higher level of retention than those brands that put prices up by less”. So that would lead to the assumption that there are other factors that are persuasive in providing a better experience and hence a better retention rate.

When searching for reviews for insurance companies, one of the most cited concerns is the after-sales support questions – how well do you deal with claims, what is the process, is it simple and hassle-free? It’s this service that will trump any price increases when a customer has trust and reassurance that their concern or claim will be dealt with efficiently and successfully.

So, how does a company offer a framework within which the customer can be serviced to the highest level because the sales process is as much for the customer as it is for your sales team and their funnel.

These are our top 5 ‘must-do’ for excellent customer experience and retention

  1. Communicate EVERYTHING. Use every opportunity to let the customer know what has just been done and what the next step is and stick to it. Utilise a customer journey expert to shape workflows and operation processes that enables each team member to follow the same routine so that customer experience is consistent.
  2. Portals are part of the self-serve trend that are helping businesses to offer much higher standards of customer care. These portals give an element of control and transparency which encourages trust and hopefully, evangelism for the product. In a portal environment, customers can upload and download, make comments, ask for help, browse help files, watch videos and interact with chat bots or humans. All this activity helps to improve the speed of delivery and catches errors before the end point.
  3. Surveys and offers often miss the mark but if you follow the ‘timely’ and ‘giving’ approach, responses will improve and will be far more meaningful. If you want a customer to respond to a feedback form, make it incentive-led and give it a time deadline. Make it really easy and do not mislead a customer just to get them to click on a link. Keeping your surveys, feedbacks and offers in an integrated loop that feeds into your CRM, customer retention will become simple and straightforward to assess. And that’s the key – analysis of this information through reports will improve management information and decision-making.
  4. Automation is clearly something many businesses should aim towards. Being able to assign several tasks to be automatically carried out and completed brings myriad benefits such as saving employee time, reducing cost, improving efficiency and standardising processes. It will also reflect in the service your customer receives by shortening timelines, avoiding duplication of information and putting the emphasis back onto service rather than administration.
  5. Autopay speeds up the closure of the transaction rather than creating a delay where the customer might change their mind. Ease of use and a complete cycle of data between systems will highlight the efficiency of the business and the high standard that a customer should come to expect.

Have a look at our case study for a taxi insurance company we helped Freeway Insurance Services – The Urban Tech Group (