March 13, 2010

How To Research An Auto Insurance Company’s Customer Satisfaction Levels

One of the most important things to know about a company before doing business with them is how they treat their customers. This is true for any business – from banks to credit card companies to auto insurance providers. However, it can sometimes be difficult to get accurate information about how a company treats its clients. Take an insurance company, for example. Many have made the switch to a predominately online model, which means that they may not operate in the same city, let alone the same state as those who visit their site. Information present on their site, alongside their auto insurance quotes, will likely be glowing descriptions of how they treat their customers, but that information is suspect at best.

To find out how satisfied customers truly are with their car insurance company’s performance, start by trying to talk to some of their actual customers. Ask around – see if anyone you know is using this company, or has friends that do. Talk to them and see what they think. Ask them about things like wait times when they called in with questions or concerns, and response times after any collision – major or minor. In addition, ask about the price. More important than what they pay is whether or not the auto insurance quote they were given actually matches up with what they pay. If it doesn’t, that may be a concern.

Another great tool for checking up on a company’s customer satisfaction levels is the Internet. Instead of looking at the company’s website, do a search on the insurance provider’s name and see what comes up. Scan through a few forums and see what people have to say. Individuals who have been wronged by a company will often post their frustrations online in order to warn off prospective customers. Likewise, those who have had a good experience with a company may document that as well. Either way, taking a look can only help.

Even in a day-and-age of e-mail, text messaging and online, instant car insurance quotes, it’s always worthwhile to simply call up the company and speak to a real person. Tell them you’re interested in a policy, and see what they have to say. Do they answer your questions right away, or give vague generalities while trying to sell you coverage? Can they answer specific coverage questions when asked? Overall, do they sound professional and friendly? It is all of these things together – word of mouth, the Internet, and speaking to the company directly that will give a true feel for the level of customer service the business offers. Knowing that, you can make an informed choice about your auto insurance.