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Study reveals changing attitudes toward purchasing life insurance

Posted On Wed, July 27, 2011

Traditional schools of thought generally think of life insurance as being sold rather than bought, but a new study highlights changes in attitudes regarding purchasing policies.

Around 80 percent of Americans went over life insurance quotes and purchased policies in face-to-face meetings in 1996. By this year, this percentage has fallen to 64 percent. Twenty-six percent of people now choose to purchase their life insurance policies over the phone, through the mail or online. Marvin H. Feldman, president and CEO of the LIFE Foundation, which held the study along with LIMRA International, spoke on the changing attitudes and practices.

"Obviously, the internet has fundamentally changed consumers' buying practices over the past 15 years. Recognizing the growing consumer interest to use the internet to conduct research and buy life insurance, life insurance companies and agents have developed and implemented innovative strategies to engage and serve consumers through their websites and social media platforms that are more convenient for the consumer."

Although only 17 percent of those surveyed stated they would purchase life insurance online, the internet plays a vital role in most insurance transactions today. Fifty-nine percent said they would conduct research online before buying from an insurance agent.

As of 2010, only 44 percent of U.S. households have individual life policies, according to LIMRA International.

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