Google sponsored car insurance launches

by Peter Young on September 10, 2012 · 6 comments

It would appear Google has launched (not sure whether full or soft launched) – the much anticipated comparison engine for car insurance. Given a similar facility is already live for terms on credit cards, mortgages and loans, its not that much of a surprise to see Google really take use of their Beatthatquote acquisition in a sector that Beatthatquote were previously an active part of.

The ads feature very much as the other ads for loans etc feature, sitting just below the paid search results and further dropping the organic search results down yet further. At the time of writing, these were not actively appearing for searches on generic car insurance searches (though by the end of writing this it was), but for terms such as compare car insurance – however given that terms such as credit cards actively return these ‘sponsored results’ one would only imagine its only a matter of time before we see full rollout. Further more, its interesting to see the third paid result sacrificed in favour of the sponsored ad.

Functionally the service operates similarly to other comparison engines such as Go Compare, MoneySupermarket and Compare the Market collating user details such as car make and personal details – before returning a list of available options. Interestingly this does provide Google a load more of retargeting information, as they will now know:

  • The fact I am in market
  • My personal details – who I am, where I live, how many cars I own etc
  • When I may be in market moving forward

Full conversions still appear to take place on third party sites.

In terms of impact this is an interesting development. The insurance sector has a far higher % of aggregators than other markets such as credit cards, and thus the potential of this when fully launched could potentially be far bigger – and the fight for the top two positions (in particular number one) that bit bigger in terms of opportunity, as one would suggest CTR through to lower results could be the biggest impact of this introduction. If this follows the introduction of sponsored results, advertisers would pay on a CPA/CPC basis.

However what Moneysupermarket, GoCompare, USwitch and Compare the Market think of this remains to be seen. One can only imagine they would have known about this for a while, however how it plays out we are still to see

Google+ Comments

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Anton Koekemoer September 11, 2012 at 7:26 am

Hi Peter,

Yes ā€“ New in the UK, An Iā€™m sure the other countries are sure to follow (pending some of their legal legislation). A new dawn in Financial and insurance marketing.

Berian Reed September 11, 2012 at 3:32 pm

An interesting, however not surprising move from Google. We have already seen this in the credit cards, bank accounts and saving accounts verticals.

Google own all the data behind their PPC auctions, and if they can deliver incremental revenues via their own products whilst improving user experience and consumer choice then it’s a viable proposition.

Regarding car insurance, we know that Google have increased their focus on the cars vertical over the last 18 months, growing their internal expertise and launching a new car search engine trail in San Fran (https://google.com/cars/). This move could partly be a consequence of the knowledge they have gained during this time.

At the end of the day it’s a win win for Google. They have multiple ways of delivering incremental revenues here, firstly simply by cutting out the middle man (PPC) and growing revenues via BeatThatQuote and secondly as you pointed out, the additional layer of data capture will enable them to sell on even more targeted advertising at a higher premium. They can always pull the product in an instant if things aren’t quite working out.

I fully expect Google to continue to roll out it’s products across more verticals. Flight search has to be a good bet once they integrate airline booking systems with their ITA data ;)

Car Insurance Policy September 13, 2012 at 12:50 pm

This is a very good news that Google has launched the much anticipated comparison engine for car insurance. Definitely i am very agree to the comment of Mr. Berian reed that, “it is interesting, however not surprising move from Google. We have already seen this in the credit cards, bank accounts and saving accounts verticals”.

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