The French Market for Online Car Insurance

Current Situation and Perspectives in Light of Google Search Queries and the UK Experience
by Nicolas Michellod, October 17, 2012
Industry Trends


The market for online car insurance in France is on the verge of a big change. The future of this market requires insurers to make important strategic choices.

In the report, The French Market for Online Car Insurance: Current Situation and Perspectives in Light of Google Search Queries and the UK Experience, Celent provides an analysis of the current situation as well as our expectations regarding the development of the French market for online car insurance. In addition to the collaboration of Google, which has generously agreed to provide us with detailed information on the evolution of search queries made by users, Celent relies on previously published studies on the UK online car insurance market, which Celent considers to be the most mature market in the world.

“The impact of searching for the best prices on product standardization can call into question the role of certain sales intermediaries, including those whose main proposal is to provide advice to consumers about insurance products,” says Nicolas Michellod, Senior Analyst with Celent’s Insurance Group and author of the report. “The role of comparators is the determining factor for insurers in analyzing the evolution of the online car insurance market and deciding which strategy is most relevant.”

This report provides a review of the car insurance market in France, analyzes the online sales ecosystem, and identifies the factors that may boost Internet sales in the future. In this context, Celent describes the role and the growing importance of rate comparison websites in the French market. The report also provides an analysis of the recent evolution of search queries related to the purchase of car insurance via the Internet using Google data. As part of this approach, Celent compares the French and UK markets in light of data provided by Google and draws conclusions regarding the future of the online sale of car insurance products in France. Finally, this study provides recommendations for insurance companies in terms of investments and efforts to be undertaken to maximize the chances of success in this changing market.

This 31-page report contains 15 figures and 3 tables.

A French version of the report is also available.

Celent is a research and advisory firm dedicated to helping financial institutions formulate comprehensive business and technology strategies. Celent publishes reports identifying trends and best practices in financial services technology and conducts consulting engagements for financial institutions looking to use technology to enhance existing business processes or launch new business strategies. With a team of internationally based analysts, Celent is uniquely positioned to offer strategic advice and market insights on a global basis. Celent is a member of the Oliver Wyman Group, which is part of Marsh & McLennan Companies [NYSE: MMC].

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Table of Contents

Executive Summary







Review of the French Car Insurance Market



Importance of Car Insurance



Recent Market Developments



Distribution of Car Insurance


The Online Insurance Ecosystem



Factors Promoting the Growth of Purchases Influenced by Internet



The Rise of Aggregator Websites


The Influence of Consumer Behavior on Market Players



Evolution of Search Queries via the Google Search Engine



Towards a Change in Customer Behavior


Forecasting the Market for Online Car Insurance in France



Key Criteria to Analyze the Development of the Online Insurance Market



The Investment Trap Applied to the French Market


Recommendations for Insurers



Business Recommendations



IT Recommendations


Leveraging Celent’s Expertise



Support for Financial Institutions



Support for Vendors


Related Celent Research


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