As the saying goes, protection is sometimes sold rather than bought, so every effort needs to be made to engage people in its importance.
In today’s world your website is one way of giving clients access to additional information alongside the advice process, to help clients better understand their protection needs.
While tools and calculators can be particularly effective here, it is often costly and time consuming for advisers to build their own bespoke offerings.
Most insurers can give advisers content to imbed in their sites, or advisers can link to external sites or access industry-wide available material to boost their protection content.
Here we look at 10 things advisers could put on their website to help increase protection sales.
1) BMI calculators.
One of the biggest reasons people don’t take up a protection policy is because the premium quoted increases during the application, often due to a health or lifestyle issue.
Weight is one of the most common factors.
Body mass index (BMI) is the measurement used by most insurers to ascertain whether someone has a healthy height to weight ratio. As a guide, an ideal BMI is in the 18 - 25 range.
Typically, insurers start increasing rates at a BMI of around 30, and a BMI of 40 or over is likely to be excluded.
Ratings can also be applied if clients are significantly underweight.
Advisers can request detailed indicative ratings from insurer’s pre-underwriting or pre-sales teams.
Weight can obviously be a sensitive question when discussing protection applications, but by providing clients with a simple BMI calculator you can help set expectations of likely policy ratings.
The NHS offers a simple BMI tool that could be linked to online, and many insurers offer online BMI calculators that can be placed on your website.
2) Show the need for protection.
Another barrier to taking out protection is that people don’t believe it will happen to them. It is hard to imagine that you will become ill long-term, die prematurely or have a serious accident.
When people do take out protection, most take life cover, then critical illness, then income protection. But this is generally the exact reverse order of how likely they are to need each product.
Life cover is widely known about and understood, but products like income protection aren’t, despite them being more relevant for most people’s needs.
Insurer LV recently launched an online tool for advisers to use with clients, to determine the likelihood of needing various forms of protection. After answering five questions it showed that before age 65, a couple in their mid-to-late thirties would have a 62 per cent chance of being too ill to work for two months or longer, a 26 per cent chance of suffering a serious illness, a 13 per cent chance of dying and a 75 per cent chance of one of these previous scenarios happening.