The launch of a new website by AXA, enabling users to view high-level data on their home location, serves to market its smart solutions, but also illustrates an evolution of the industry towards engaging customers about risk, according to GlobalData Financial Services.
AXA is looking to target the low penetration rate of smart home products by sharing some of its proprietary risk data on its website, Give Data Back.
It allows anyone to enter their postcode and reveals the regularity and average cost of water leakages and theft in their area.
Though smart home technology is a growing trend, take-up remains low, with the cost of devices an issue for many consumers despite the discounts offered by providers.
GlobalData’s General Insurance Consumer Survey found that over three quarters of consumers do not own six of the seven devices surveyed. Furthermore, no more than 9.8% of people responded that they were interested in buying one of the devices.
The task is for insurers to convince people that smart home sensors and other risk-management hardware is a worthwhile investment.
AXA’s approach is to educate consumers about how common and expensive break-ins and water leakages can be. The data on its website reveals that a West London postcode suffers an average of one break-in per day, costing just over £2,000. The advantage of a low penetration rate is the size of the potential market. Educating consumers about the long-term benefits of these devices appears to be an essential way of bridging the gap.
AXA’s move also forms part of a broader trend within the insurance industry that includes the entry of smart devices into the space – that of an increasing level of conversation with customers on how to understand and avoid unfortunate events from happening.
In a new reality where insurers may have to survive among devices that can prevent the traditional use of a policy, it is the insurers that can best show themselves as an open, insightful “risk management buddy” that will win out. AXA has played its opening hand.