If you’re shopping for just about any type of insurance policy, the process has gotten a lot easier in recent years. The widespread development of insurance comparison websites has not only made it possible to obtain an insurance policy online, but also to compare policies, provisions, and premiums between several companies on the same website.
If you’re about to embark on yet another insurance shopping trip, starting the search with an insurance comparison website will make the process easier and far less time-consuming. And there’s a better than even chance you’ll pay less for your premium in the process.
Table of Contents
- What are Insurance Comparison Websites?
- Why Use an Insurance Comparison Website?
- Will it Cost More to Use an Insurance Comparison Website?
- Life Insurance Comparison Websites
- Car Insurance Comparison Websites
- Health Insurance Comparison Websites
- Homeowner’s/Renter’s Insurance Comparison Websites
- Pet Health Insurance Comparison Websites
- Bottom Line
What are Insurance Comparison Websites?
Insurance comparison websites are online platforms that include participation by multiple insurance companies. By completing a single, simple online application – where you’re just providing basic information – you can get insurance quotes from multiple companies.
Much like a grocery store, where you can buy many different food items, insurance comparison websites offer you the ability to shop among several companies on the same site.
Why Use an Insurance Comparison Website?
If you’re like most people, shopping for insurance – any type of insurance – isn’t your favorite thing to do. There’s good reason for that, too. Insurance policies contain a large number of complicated provisions, and it’s time-consuming and confusing to shop for a policy from several different companies individually.
Insurance comparison websites bring the entire insurance shopping process onto a single online platform. You’ll enter your criteria, provide some basic information, and the site will serve up relevant quotes from participating insurance companies.
And just as important, a comparison site will automatically match you with the companies and policies that best fit your needs. That will avoid the complications of dealing with an individual insurance company that might attempt to put you into the wrong policy simply because that’s all they have available.
Insurance comparison websites give you greater control over the insurance shopping process. And because you can compare quotes side-by-side, it’s much easier to learn if you’re really paying the lowest premium for the coverage level you need.
Will it Cost More to Use an Insurance Comparison Website?
Cost is one of the major benefits of using an insurance comparison website. That’s because there’s no up front cost to the consumer to shop around.
Consumers may mistakenly think they’ll pay more when using an insurance comparison website. They think that participating insurance companies may charge higher premiums because they’re on a third party website. That they may have to pay the third party website to be listed and pass that cost onto consumers. But that’s usually not the case.
Yes, insurance comparison websites are compensated by participating insurance companies. But that compensation is not passed on to the consumer. The insurance company pays a predetermined fee or fee percentage to the comparison site for bringing the consumer to the company.
Put another way, you have absolutely nothing to lose in using a comparison website, and everything to gain.
Life Insurance Comparison Websites
Life insurance has become incredibly competitive, particularly term insurance. Most of it seems to be offered through online sources, which is both an advantage and a source of complication. But by using life insurance comparison websites, you can minimize the confusion, and choose the best policy, using a side-by-side comparison of multiple company quotes.
Below are the top life insurance comparison websites:
As the name implies, Insurify is all about insurance, and life insurance is one of the products they provide. However, it appears that their primary offerings are with car insurance and homeowner’s insurance. But the company hints that as many as 300 companies participate on the platform, which could make it an excellent choice to get the best life insurance policy available.
You can get quotes from up to 28 insurance companies on the QuoteWizard site. Just complete the brief series of questions online and you’ll be provided with quotes from multiple companies.
Like some other insurance comparison websites listed in this guide, QuoteWizard specializes in insurance. You won’t see other products and services listed, which puts the focus entirely on insurance. And since you can buy multiple insurance types on the site, there’s a strong possibility for bundling with the same carrier to get a discount on the premium.
This one is admittedly a bit of a surprise. LendingTree is, after all, an online lending marketplace where you can obtain all kinds of financing. But they also offer various types of insurance, including life insurance. And if you happen to be shopping for a loan anyway – or plan to in the future – you may also want to check out a life insurance policy along the way.
Car Insurance Comparison Websites
Car insurance is expensive, especially in certain states. You owe it to yourself to shop between several companies to get the best coverage for the money. Insurance comparison websites are the perfect way to do that. This is where the side-by-side comparison of policies and premiums can really make a difference.
Below are the top car insurance comparison websites:
What we like about Compare.com is that it’s all about car insurance. In fact, that’s the only type of coverage they offer. The platform gives you an opportunity to shop among no fewer than 50 car insurance companies. Those include some of the biggest names in the industry, including Nationwide, USAA, Liberty Mutual, The General, Amica, esurance, and SafeAuto.
That’s important, because not all car insurance companies offer coverage in all states. The large number of participating carriers virtually guarantees you’ll have multiple options, no matter which state you live in.
ValuePenguin is another of the most popular insurance comparison websites on the Internet. Though they offer home insurance and health insurance, their emphasis seems to be squarely on car insurance.
QuoteWizard gives you the ability to get car insurance quotes from multiple providers. And like many other online insurance comparison websites, they also act as a valuable information resource. Unfortunately, the website indicates participation by just four providers, esurance, American Family, State Farm, and Allstate.
The Zebra is another comparison website that focuses entirely on insurance. And as you might expect, car insurance is one of their specializations. Not only can you purchase insurance online, but you’ll also have access to a licensed insurance agent for information and assistance.
The Zebra is one of the best-known insurance comparison websites in the industry.
Just as LendingTree offers life insurance policies – in addition to their main bread-and-butter of loans – they also offer car insurance and other types of coverage. It’s another platform where the possibility of getting bundling discounts for multiple policies with the same provider is always a possibility.
Health Insurance Comparison Websites
Health insurance is a difficult policy type to get from any source, other than the government-sponsored health insurance exchanges. This has been the reality of the industry since the rollout of the Affordable Care Act. But there are several health insurance comparison websites that can make the search easier.
Below are the top health insurance comparison websites:
Like other insurance comparison websites, ValuePenguin acts primarily as a point of entry for the health insurance exchanges in the various states. But you can use the site to obtain quotes from five major health insurance carriers, including UnitedHealthcare, Aetna, Humana, CIGNA, and Blue Cross/Blue Shield.
Much like other health insurance comparison websites, QuoteWizard works within the framework of the ACA. But they work specifically with five health insurance carriers, which are some of the biggest names in the industry. These include UnitedHealthcare, Aetna, Humana, CIGNA, and Blue Cross/Blue Shield.
The advantage they offer is that you can work directly with agents from those companies, rather than having to go through a health insurance exchange website.
Homeowner’s/Renter’s Insurance Comparison Websites
It’s likely the average consumer knows less about homeowners and renter’s insurance than they do about car insurance. That’s not surprising, considering the number of potential hazards and provisions home insurance policies contain. But insurance comparison websites go a long way toward closing the knowledge gap, enabling you to get the right policy at the lowest premium.
Below are the top home insurance comparison websites:
Home insurance is one of Insurify’s specializations. You’ll complete a simple questionnaire, providing information about your home and the coverage options you want. You’ll then get real quotes directly from insurance companies. You can then complete the purchase either online or over the phone. They offer insurance quotes from 19 companies, some of which are among the biggest names in the industry.
Home insurance is another specialization of The Zebra. They offer both homeowners and renters insurance, and you can complete the initial application entirely online, then get quotes from multiple participating insurance companies. The company claims to be the nation’s leading insurance comparison site.
Not surprisingly, QuoteWizard also offers both homeowners and renters insurance. Unfortunately, they are a bit limited in this category in that they only work with four insurance companies, once again, including esurance, American Family, State Farm, and Allstate. But the platform also provides valuable information and tools – as well as a glossary – to make you a better-informed consumer of home insurance.
LendingTree might not be your first stop on your shopping trip for homeowners or renter’s insurance, but they do provide access to insurance companies offering this coverage.
Pet Health Insurance Comparison Websites
With the rising cost of health insurance for pets, as well as for people, and the reality that millions of people consider their pets to be family, the popularity of pet health insurance policies has been growing in recent years. And yes, there are even insurance comparison websites for pet insurance.
Below are the top pet insurance comparison websites – there aren’t as many as this insurance type is relatively new:
NerdWallet is a diverse financial services website offering consumers options on all types of products. Though it’s not a dedicated insurance comparison site, they do offer articles providing insurance comparisons in various categories.
Their pet insurance resource page provides access to quotes from no fewer than 12 carriers. They include some of the most popular pet insurance companies in the industry, including Embrace, Healthy Paws, Nationwide, PetFirst, and Trupanion.
In addition to being able to get a quote with a direct link to each carrier listed on the resource page, they also provide a summary of coverage levels offered by each company.
It’s probably safe to say that there’s an insurance comparison website somewhere on the web to help you shop for any type of insurance policy you’re looking for. Don’t ignore those resources – they present a genuine opportunity to simplify an otherwise complicated process, as well as save you a lot of money.
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Michael Preyer says
Thanks, Kevin! That was an incredibly detailed, well-written and informative article. I greatly appreciate the time it must have taken to do that.