Learn how to harness the power of website design and strategy for your insurance agency.
Before making a big purchase, most shoppers (81%) conduct research online. This, along with the boom of digital marketing on social media, television, and other advertising avenues, makes the need for a strong website abundantly clear.
Your website is your insurance agency’s digital front door and is a powerful marketing tool. It’s one of the main ways your prospects find you during their research. It can help build credibility, establish your expertise, distinguish you from your competition, and is a place you can send people to learn more about your agency after they see an advertisement, like a social media post, or receive a business card from one of your agents.
The more intuitive and strategic your website is, the better your chances are of converting them. Let’s dive into the basics of creating a website for your insurance agency and the key features your website needs to grow your business effectively.
The Benefits of Websites for Insurance Agencies
In today’s digital world, a website is crucial to helping prospects find your insurance agency and, in turn, growing your business.
There are a few major benefits life and health insurance agencies get with an online presence:
- Building brand awareness and trust. A strong, strategic website helps prospects familiarize themselves with your company and gives you an opportunity to differentiate yourself from your competitors.
- Connecting with visitors. Your website opens the lines of communication with prospects, allowing you to collect their information through things like lead forms at their peak interest and initiate the next steps in your sales process.
- Generating leads. You need a place for searchers to find you. Your website is a valuable touchpoint in your prospects’ buyer journeys because it gives searchers a way to find you when they’re researching which insurance agency to work with.
Step 1: Define Your Website Goals
Before you start creating your website, you need to define your website’s purpose.
- Why are you creating this website?
- What are you hoping to achieve?
- What are your S.M.A.R.T. goals for your website?
The answers to these questions will impact your website’s strategy, such as how it’s designed and the prioritization and presentation of key information on each page. This framework can set you up for long-term success in reaching your website goals.
Step 2: Choose & Secure Your Domain
After you’ve defined your goals, you want to ensure the domain you want is available.
Your website domain is your presence on the internet, which is found by your IP address or domain name, such as www.agencybloc.com. It should be your company name or directly related to your brand in some way.
Follow these six steps to obtain your website domain:
- Choose your registrar or web hosting service.
- Ensure your desired domain is available for purchase using an online domain availability checker. Have a couple of ideas in mind in case your top choice is taken.
- Fill out the necessary forms to claim your domain. These forms ask for both personal information and contact details for the public “WHOIS” database, which helps users research companies to ensure they’re both legitimate and trustworthy. This is a step we recommend during any vendor research process.
- Pay for your domain. Prices will vary depending on the web host or registrar you use.
- Link your domain and website. Using the domain manager, connect your domain to your website; this will require entering host server information if you haven’t purchased your domain and web hosting from the same provider. If you don’t have the website set up yet, you can wait on this step–we’ll discuss the host server information shortly.
- Once you’ve completed step five, confirm your domain is live.
Once you make a registered domain, you will typically also receive an email address that reflects it, which can increase your company’s credibility. This varies between web hosting services and registrars, so be sure to read the fine print.
Step 3: Build & Design Your Website
The website design process for insurance agencies can be a daunting task to tackle. There are two options you can choose:
- Build your own on a website-building platform such as Wix, Squarespace, or WordPress
- Partner with a company that specializes in web design and development
There are some benefits and drawbacks to both approaches.
Building Your Own Insurance Agency’s Website
|You can usually purchase your domain name through the website builder when you sign up for their web hosting plan.
|It can be time-consuming.
You have complete control on the back end for updates and changes.
If you use a templated website through Squarespace or a similar platform, it can look “cookie-cutter” as there are only a set number of layouts, designs, and styles available.
It’s relatively inexpensive as all of the time and resources to support your website are sourced in-house.
It may lack the creativity, strategy, and customization of a professionally-built website.
You can leverage your creative mind and instinct.
It could lack the latest in content and SEO best practices to help your website rank on search engines.
Contracting With a Company To Create Your Insurance Agency’s Website
With the right website partner, you have an expert to take your ideas and turn them into reality.
Can be costly; Thomas Digital estimates professionally-designed websites can start at $5,000 minimum.
They’re efficient with website design and development, so the turnaround could be shorter.
You may not have access to the back end to do your own website updates, which means you’ll have to reach out to the company to perform these updates, which may cost you. However, the best website partners have their own Content Management Systems (CMS) that you’ll have access to.
They offer custom-created websites that are unique and tailored to your company’s needs and goals.
They can usually connect you with experts in other fields like content marketing, SEO, and more to make your website the most successful it can be.
They generally have access to professional stock images, photographers, or a team of designers to create professional-looking website visuals.
Overall, you want to choose the option that makes the most sense for your company. Some insurance agencies may find they’re too small to hire a web designer, and thus will opt to build their own. However, others may find they’re losing employee time and revenue opportunities by managing their website, and that hiring a web development and design team is a worthwhile investment.
Research both options thoroughly and interview multiple companies to see if they are the right fit for you.
Step 4: Ensure Key Components Are Included on Your Insurance Agency’s Website
There are some critical features you’ll want on your website to ensure it generates success for your insurance agency.
Straightforward Design, Layout, & Text
Steve Jobs said it best, “Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.”
When it comes to your insurance agency’s website, less is more. Instead of cramming your website full of images, wordy text, and bright colors, opt for a simpler design that makes it easy for visitors to find what they’re looking for.
Not only does a simpler design look cleaner, but it also helps to reduce load time for your website—which is crucial since a slow-loading website is frustrating and also can hinder your rankings in search engines.
Plus, while the design may not seem like a big deal, 48% of people cited it as the number one factor in determining a business’s credibility.
Here are some tips to help you achieve a strong website design:
- Minimize color use. Stick to two main colors and one to two secondary colors. Try using a neutral color as one of your main ones. We recommend to use colors associated with your brand and have a high contrast against a white background.
- Stay away from bright and neon colors. Although they attract attention, neon colors can be harsh and decrease readability.
- Focus on quality text over quantity of text. Give your prospects the tip of the iceberg: who you are, what you do, and what sets you apart. Capture their attention, then talk through the nitty-gritty details in your ongoing conversations.
- Use problem-resolution-focused text. Your website should address the problems your prospects and clients face and how you help solve them.
- Optimize your images. Optimized images are smaller file sizes, thus they load faster.
Responsive & Mobile-Friendly
When designing your website, ensure that your website is responsive. Check out the difference in the image below:
Source | Developers.Google
On the left is a regular, non-responsive website and on the right is a responsive one.
Responsiveness enables your website to function at its best and allows visitors to navigate it effectively regardless of the digital device they’re using–from phones to tablets to desktop computers, and more.
Mobile-first website design is all the more important considering that 72% of the world will only use their phones to access the internet by 2025. For more ongoing mobile, check out our blog How to Become a Mobile Life & Health Insurance Agency.
Contact Information & Availability
Your website provides visitors the chance to “meet” you and decide if you’re the right partner for them. If they decide they like you and you have no form of communication listed, they’ll continue on to the next viable option.
You should provide key contact information, such as:
- A phone number—extra points for one that is monitored constantly throughout the day and has a voicemail during off hours
- An address
- Working hours
- Social profile links—only link these if they’re monitored and used regularly
Take your contact information a step further by creating a Google Business Profile. After doing so, your company will pop up on the right-hand side of desktop browsers with all of your contact information at the ready for searchers. Here’s an example of Sams/Hockaday & Associates’ Google Business Profile:
Source | Google
In the above example, they also have a link for setting appointments in addition to their hours, phone number, and address. This information is crucial and having it listed here makes finding you convenient for new prospects.
To learn how to get the most out of your listing, check out our blog about Google Business Profile best practices.
Earlier, we listed gathering leads as one of the major benefits of having a website. To do so, you must have a lead form that’s optimized for conversion on your site–and it’s even better if you can have it linked to your agency management system (AMS)!
A lead form is a field-directed form that gathers information from visitors that you can then use to contact them and understand their needs.
We identified these four tips to help you optimize your lead forms for conversion:
- Keep the number of form fields to around four. Use as few form fields as possible to increase the likelihood of conversion.
- Place your form above the fold. Keep your lead form near the top of your webpage to increase the chance of visibility.
- Only ask for necessary information, or make it optional. Since four is the sweet spot for form fields, if you need to gather more information, make those fields optional. For example, you could require a name and email address, but make a contact number optional.
- Make your form responsive. In addition to a responsive website as a whole, your form should also be responsive. If it’s not and someone looks at your page from a mobile device, it could potentially cut off your form and make it a headache to fill out, which could cost you valuable leads.
Using a customizable lead form in AgencyBloc, pictured below, gives you the flexibility to determine what information you want to capture and how it looks overall.
Source | AgencyBloc
In AgencyBloc, you can also connect your customizable lead form to Automated Workflows that notify you and your agents instantly when leads come in so that you can work them immediately. This helps you ensure you are responsive and getting in touch quickly.
The insurance industry is relationship-driven and relies heavily on personal connections. Your website is another tool in your arsenal you can use to connect with and convert prospects, growing your book of business.
Make Your Lead Management More Efficient
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This blog was originally published on November 18, 2019, and has been most recently updated and republished on December 20, 2022.
by Allison Babberl
on Wednesday, December 21, 2022