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The key role played by intermediaries in the retail insurance distribution

The key role played by intermediaries in the retail insurance distribution PurposeThe insurance market has high churn rates because customers’ purchase decision-making process and claims management rely heavily on intermediaries. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the role played by insurers and intermediaries in customer satisfaction, as well as in the preferences of customers regarding the purchase decision-making process.Design/methodology/approachThe first step was to select the most important attributes for Portuguese insurance customers. Three focus groups were conducted (using B2C and B2B markets), and data from Portuguese car insurance customers were gathered through an ad hoc questionnaire. Structural equation models and the multidimensional scaling unfolding model were applied.FindingsIntermediaries play a key role in the retail insurance distribution channels by influencing customer satisfaction, claims management and the purchasing process (premium acceptance).Practical implicationsBecause of the influence that intermediaries have on customer satisfaction, insurers should improve their partnerships (back office support) with intermediaries.Originality/valueThe study contributes to the retail distribution literature of the insurance sector by providing empirical evidence of the impact of intermediaries on customers’ satisfaction. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management Emerald Publishing

The key role played by intermediaries in the retail insurance distribution

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © Emerald Group Publishing Limited
ISSN
0959-0552
DOI
10.1108/IJRDM-10-2017-0234
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

PurposeThe insurance market has high churn rates because customers’ purchase decision-making process and claims management rely heavily on intermediaries. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the role played by insurers and intermediaries in customer satisfaction, as well as in the preferences of customers regarding the purchase decision-making process.Design/methodology/approachThe first step was to select the most important attributes for Portuguese insurance customers. Three focus groups were conducted (using B2C and B2B markets), and data from Portuguese car insurance customers were gathered through an ad hoc questionnaire. Structural equation models and the multidimensional scaling unfolding model were applied.FindingsIntermediaries play a key role in the retail insurance distribution channels by influencing customer satisfaction, claims management and the purchasing process (premium acceptance).Practical implicationsBecause of the influence that intermediaries have on customer satisfaction, insurers should improve their partnerships (back office support) with intermediaries.Originality/valueThe study contributes to the retail distribution literature of the insurance sector by providing empirical evidence of the impact of intermediaries on customers’ satisfaction.

Journal

International Journal of Retail & Distribution ManagementEmerald Publishing

Published: Dec 10, 2018

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