Today people turn to their smartphones and tablets to do just about everything, like reserve a motel room, order Thai takeout, and compare mortgage rates.
But when it comes to buying insurance, their mobile gadgets let them down. Simple, clear answers are hard to come by.
Now an entrepreneurial team aims to fundamentally change the way Americans research and buy insurance, bringing the industry into the digital age by linking independent agents with consumers who need their impartial guidance.
To accomplish this, the group launched Agent Review in 2015. It’s the first complete rating and matching platform designed to link independent agents with insurance buyers via mobile devices as well as PC’s.
Why Such a Service is Needed
Buying insurance isn’t like buying pizza. Casual internet access just isn’t practical. Insurance is way too complex for that. There are too many options, sources, and considerations. And way too may random pitches and fill-in forms. People get overwhelmed and feel assaulted.
Whether it’s life, health, homeowners, or another insurance type, the story is the same:
- Screens fill up with a frustrating array of links and ads, mostly leading people to major carriers, large agencies, and lead referral services.
- Smart shoppers soon throw up their hands. Why should they go it alone? They need impartial advice. But experienced, vetted local agents are very hard to locate online.
Before people can intelligently buy insurance, they need to find a knowledgeable insurance agent, someone they like, come to know, and feel they can trust. The Agent Review platform is designed to help them find and connect with such a person in the quickest, most efficient manner.
How Agent Review Leads the Way
It’s a free education and matchmaking system for consumers; and a free productivity and matchmaking system for agents — with affordable value-added features for agents wishing to supercharge their business.
It aims to become the “Yelp” of the insurance industry — a rating, vetting and connection service that brings buyers and qualified insurance agents together in one place and in efficient, personal ways.
The company’s mobile-optimized website — agentreview.net — is accessible via the Internet. It automatically reformats for agile performance on mobile devices and takes full advantage of large screens when viewed by PC. Groundbreaking functions empower consumers and agents alike.
For insurance buyers, the Agent Review process starts with search and ends with connection. Features include:
- Search by location and insurance type. This allows buyers to quickly find agents in a particular geographic area who handle auto, critical illness, health, homeowners, life, long-term care, or Medicare supplement insurance.
- Google-like free-form searching. This allows buyers to find agents with desired characteristics; for example, someone in Los Angeles who offers life insurance and is male, speaks Spanish, and served in the Navy.
- Search results with agents’ pictures and names visible, for the buyer to peruse and select from.
- Details about each agent, including –
- Insurance lines and carriers represented.
- Agent’s biography or background description.
- Reviews or testimonials with ratings (usually 1 to 5 stars).
- An image gallery that gives a feel for the agent.
- Videos of the agent speaking or expressing the agent’s point of view.
- Link to the agent’s personal or business website.
- Other information ranging from location map to social media links.
- Contact information including phone number, email address, and inquiry form.
- Actual contact when the buyer is ready.
- An extensive research and education function. Types of insurance, from auto to critical illness, are described in detail. Frequently-asked questions are answered, such as, “Should you buy direct or use an agent?”
- 72 languages supported. Everything, including the agent’s profile, may be rendered in French, German or any of 70 other tongues.
Currently there is no mobile-optimized rating and matching service that does everything Agent Review does. Budding agent lookup services, such as Trusted Choice, do a good job of listing agencies based on zip code, but lack Agent Review’s star ratings, reviews, testimonials, video and image posts, and other personalized features.
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