BINGHAM FARMS — For the first time ever, consumers can finally comparison-shop auto insurance rates and be alerted when rates drop thanks to a new service from Ratekick.com.
This free, anonymous and unbiased service provides consumers with estimated rates for every auto insurer in their state, without having to provide any personal information or waiting for an agent or salesperson to return their call.
While consumers have become used to online comparison shopping for airfares, car prices, household goods, business supplies and more, auto insurance has remained closed, requiring consumers to provide detailed personal information to an insurance agent or carrier simply to receive a price quote.
However, Ratekick’s Insurance Analyzer system takes the data that insurers must file with state insurance commissioners and other regulators in all 50 states and uses it as the basis for estimated rate comparisons, allowing consumers to shop anonymously.
Initial rates gathered are based on ZIP code, vehicle year, make, model and style, and age, gender and marital status of the primary driver. From there, the Insurance Analyzer system gives users the ability to customize their search by adding vehicles and drivers, and selecting specific deductibles, coverage options, and liability limits. Additional search criteria such as payment terms, discounts, and credit rating range garner personalized results for the user without entering any personal information.
“What we’ve done with Ratekick is to finally bring the comparison-shopping power of the Internet to the auto insurance market,” said Ratekick co-founder and CEO Brian Hannigan, a serial entrepreneur with experience in the insurance industry. “Very, very few people have the best possible deal on their car insurance, but the process of trying to find a better deal is such a hassle that most people don’t bother beyond two or three calls to companies they’ve seen advertised on TV or their local insurance agent. We hope that Ratekick will be as empowering for Americans as the first travel Web sites that suddenly gave consumers the ability to shop for airline tickets.”
Once Ratekick users have identified one or more insurance carriers from which they would like a formal quote based on published rates, Ratekick provides one-click access to the insurer or their qualified local agent.
One other benefit of Ratekick is that it provides estimated rates from all insurers licensed to do business in a state, giving consumers the opportunity, should they desire, to compare local companies or less well-known carriers with the well-known, national insurers with large advertising and marketing budgets.
In addition, since auto insurance rates can change regularly, Ratekick also offers free Rategrabber price drop alerts, emailing users when a better rate has been published for their individual situation.
“Ratekick’s Insurance Analyzer system is really a disruptive end-run around the existing insurance sales system that tries to keep from giving you a price until they have all of your personal information in their databases,” said executive vice president James MacKay. “What we’ve done is free up the information that was already public record in filing cabinets in state insurance regulator offices and given it a new life on the Internet to give consumers the power they’ve come to expect from online comparison shopping.”
Ratekick offers auto insurance rate comparisons for all 50 states, and is currently rolling out its home, life and health insurance applications on a regional basis. The site will eventually be a one-stop-shop for all of these rates.
Founded by veteran insurance insiders, Ratekick offers rate comparisons for the world’s largest selection of insurance carriers all in one place. The site’s proprietary patent-pending online rating engine, My Insurance Analyzer, allows users to shop anonymously without sharing any personal information or talking with an insurance salesperson until they are ready to buy a policy, then Ratekick connects the consumer instantly with the provider of their choice.
Similar to Kayak, Ratekick’s revenue model is a portion of the proceeds when a consumer buys insurance through the site, as well as advertising on the site.
More at www.ratekick.com.
Ratekick was founded in 2008, and spent several years in product development. It launched its site in three test states, Michigan, Florida and Texas, on March 1 of this year. The company currently has six employees and plans to start hiring more soon, Hannigan said.
The company is backed by three venture capital companies — Blue Wave Investments LLC of Maine, Eagle Wings Venture Partners LLC of St. Clair Shores and 3b Ventures LLC of Texas.