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India’s online search for financial services and products grows 4 times in three years

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India’s onloine search for insurance, pension products grows 4 times in three years | Business Standard.

India has the third largest base of internet users in the world, with a growing ‘digital high value’ consumer segment. According to a research report by Aviva and IMRB (Indian Market Research Bureau), India’s online search for financial services has grown four times in the last three years.

The survey was conducted across customers living in top 8 cities with annual incomes of Rs 6 lakh and above. These are customers who use internet atleast once in two weeks and have purchased a life insurance policy online in the last one year.

According to the report, almost 13 million searches a month are related to insurance. Within the segment of insurance, most internet users researched about retirement and pension related products.

The report further elaborates that some while some people research for financial products online, most of them still end up buying products offline. Reason: Offline mode of buying insurance is driven by assurance resulting in better credibility and perceptions.

Maximum sales of life insurance still happens through the offline mode. For instance, over 65% of the internet users bought health and life insurance products offline.

While the traffic of internet users is increasing year on year, what is stopping them from actually buying products online? According to the survey, physical absence of an agent holds back most customers in buying the product online.

Additionally, insurance being a complex product, customers feel it is important to have an agent explain the product or insurance policy. 21% of the internet users opine that, they avoid buying an insurance policy online because they don’t know the claim procedure. Reason: If you buy a policy offline, your insurance agent will act as an intermediary and help you in settling your claims

However, one should know that an insurance agent will only push product of a single company. hence, its important you do your search online, compare products and buy products accordingly.

Still, these are customers who contribute one third of their savings pool online. Additionally, some 27 million professionals hold a disproportionate part of the savings pool online.