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Success selling insurance online

Christchurch insurance adviser Neil McKenzie says he is successfully selling life insurance online – something others have tried at but failed.

Thursday, November 2nd 2006, 9:48PM

by Philip Macalister

His site, LifeDirect, is a year old and has sold something like 400 policies to date, he says.

Up until now the site has had policies from three companies (Fidelity, Sovereign and Asteron) and it has now just added Tower Insurance.

"Since we launched LifeDirect more than a year ago, we’ve noticed a demand from customers looking for more choice of providers and a wider range of insurance prices to choose from. So far we’ve given more than 20,000 quotes to customers through LifeDirect, and that’s expected to increase now that we have the strongly recognised brand of Tower on board," McKenzie says.

McKenzie says there are plans to expand the range of policies available to include medical and mortgage cover and he is looking to partner up with other sites.

Over the past year the site has been redesigned and the online application process has been simplified.

Because insurance companies in New Zealand are reluctant to use a generic application form he has had to create separate forms for each companies; policies.

McKenzie runs an insurance advisory business, Empire, and is using the site as a no advice option for customers.

He says a good proportion of customers are in Auckland, but there is a spread across the country.

Also there is a diverse range of customers such as young professionals, farmers, busy businesspeople, shift workers and company directors.

"It’s all about making life easy for our customers, who are already purchasing other services and products online.

"We’ve found that Auckland is our biggest market, and customers are mostly in the 30-40 age bracket – they tend to be time-conscious and are looking for a convenient, hassle-free way to get the life insurance they need," McKenzie says.

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