Only one in four auto insurance customers shopped for a new policy in the past 12 months, but 43 percent of those that did switched their insurer Ã¢â‚¬“ the highest rate since 2008 Ã¢â‚¬“ according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2012 U.S. Insurance Shopping Study released earlier this week.
J.D. Power notes that the increase in the proportion of shoppers switching actually suggests that fewer customers are price shopping for a better rate, given that the auto insurance shopping rate is at its lowest point in the past five years.
This is perhaps a result of the lower typical savings that result from switching insurer, which has decreased from an average of $412 in 2010, to only $359 in the past 12 months, it said.
J.D. Power also notes that customer retention rates are increasing at a time when auto insurers are spending more money to entice customers to switch insurer:
As far as online shopping trends, the study also finds that 52 percent of auto insurance customers start the shopping process online, and 73 percent visit at least one insurerÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s website at some point during their shopping experience.
More significantly, 32 percent of customers solely obtain quotes online, and some 34 percent of all recent shoppers state they would most prefer to purchase their new policy online.
The 2012 U.S. Shopping study is based on responses from more than 16,100 shoppers who requested an auto insurance price quote from at least one competitive insurer in the past 12 months.
Check outÃ‚ Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.) tips on how to save money on auto insurance here.