There has been an improvement in the experience being offered by insurance companies across all the main business lines, according to the Spring 2022 Fairer Finance Customer Experience Ratings.
Indeed, the average score across home, car, pet and travel insurance providers has improved by 1.3 percentage points to 61.9% for Spring 2022, up from 60.5% six months ago.
Coming out on top in the latest edition of the rankings is car insurance, with an average Fairer Finance rating of 64.9%, up from 64.4% in Autumn 2021 when it also topped the rankings.
Indeed, the order in which customers have rated the main business lines over the last 12 months has remained unchanged, despite improvements in performance across each product area.
This means that home insurance remains the second highest-rated product area with a score of 64.8%, compared to 63.1% in Autumn 2021.
Fairer Finance managing director James Daley said that the pricing dynamics that emerged in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic had been a significant driver behind the improvements seen across both the motor and home insurance sectors.
“Prices fell for car insurance and stayed relatively flat for home insurance during the pandemic,” he said. “We believe this has been the main driver behind increased levels of satisfaction and trust that we’ve seen in these sectors over the last two years.
“However, there’s early signs that those gains may be short lived, as a combination of rising inflation and the FCA’s dual pricing ban starts to push aggregate prices back up.”
Daley added that motor and home insurers have also been getting better at delivering a more transparent user journey, a trend he expected to continue.
“We are also seeing steady improvements in our transparency scores for both car and home,” he said. “Insurers have improved the clarity of information in their purchase journeys, and started to get to grips with the challenge of simplifying complex policy documents.
“We expect that trend to continue as the FCA’s consumer duty rules come into effect next year raising the bar in terms of customer communication even further.”
Meanwhile, pet insurance was the third highest-rated product line with a rating of 64.3%, up from 62.9% in the Autumn 2021 release of the rankings.
Daley said that while the average score for pet insurers had improved over the last 12 months, there was the beginnings of a “real polarisation” between the best and worst performing brands.
“The sector has seen massive growth over the pandemic, and while its scores are still climbing, it’s clear that good claims management is the key, as this is a sector where customers claim much more often,” he said. “We’re beginning to see a real polarisation in our tables between the brands that offer a speedy claims service and those who make it hard to get a quick resolution.”
Despite being the lowest rated of the four business lines with a Spring 2022 rating of 53.6%, travel insurance is actually the most-improved product area over the last six months, with its rating improving by some 1.8 percentage points.
Daley said that the sector had undergone much upheaval since the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak – particularly with regards to its reputation – but he expected the sector to continue to improve its scores over the coming months and years.
“The travel insurance sector has undergone significant change over the last two years, with the two biggest players exiting the market,” he said. “The sector obviously took a hit reputationally during the pandemic - with many customers frustrated that their policies didn’t pay out when they were stranded.
“But as that chapter moves into the rear view mirror, we’d expect customer scores to continue to improve.”
Want to further explore these Customer Experience Ratings from Fairer Finance? Insurance DataLab subscribers can also access ratings for individual companies across all four of these business lines through our data hub.