Smart insurance agents understand that having a well-designed insurance agent website is critical to succeeding as an insurance agent today. A good agent website will develop new leads for you, educate your prospects on the types of insurance policies you sell, and reinforce your professional image.
Insurance agents have several options for launching a website. Before deciding how to take your agency online, it’s important to understand the options and their strengths and weaknesses. You should also consider how often you want to update the site, how you plan on using the site, and your technical abilities.
There are three general approaches agents take to building their insurance agent website:
1. Hire a Web Designer to Build a Custom Insurance Website
Many agents decide to hire a professional web designer to create a web design from scratch. This will include creating the look and feel of the site, writing all of the site’s copy, creating the HTML for the website, developing any custom functionality, and setting up the server. If an agent that hired a custom designer wants to change or update the site, generally he will hire the same designer to do the updates, paying hourly for the changes.
Pro’s of hiring a web designer to build a custom insurance website:
- The most flexible of any option
- Your site can have a unique design
- If you need specialized functionality, you can develop it
Con’s of hiring a web designer to build a custom insurance website:
- Sites can be very expensive, with up front fees of hundreds to thousands of dollars to launch a site
- Many hidden costs, including stock images, copywriting, and hosting
- The sites can take weeks or months to build
- Updating the site can be a slow and expensive process
- Monthly fees on top of the set-up
More technically inclined agents sometimes choose to create websites themselves with downloadable insurance website templates or from scratch. Many website template options are available for download, and many blogging systems provide hundreds of design choices to creating websites. To modify and use templates, you will need to know some HTML, design, and server administration. Additionally, you will need to write all of the copy for your site.
Pro’s of building your agent website yourself using insurance templates:
- This may be the lowest cost option in terms of out-of-pocket expense
- Some agents find learning about web design and search optimization to be a fun challenge
- You may be able to get a simple site up more quickly than if you hired a professional designer
Con’s of building your agent website yourself using insurance templates:
- Sites often look unprofessional and hurt your brand more than help it
- Unless you understand search engine optimization, there is little chance that your site will rank well with search engines
- You are responsible for managing all updates and changes to your site
- There will be hidden costs, including hosting, stock photography, and potentially hiring a professional to fix issues with the site
- Can take a significant amount of time away from selling insurance
3. Use a Professional Insurance Agent Website Management Platform
An insurance agents who wants the best of the both worlds often chooses to develop and manage his site using an insurance agent website platform. These platforms help an agent easily and quickly build, manage, and update websites. They provide insurance website templates and multiple design layouts, a library of content and images, and all of the hosting and system management needed to run a site. The agent has a high level of control of his website, but does not need to have any special technical knowledge. Sites can be launched in a matter of minutes and changed very quickly.
Look for a provider that offers a reasonable monthly fee, doesn’t charge for set-up, and is willing to let you try the platform for free.
Pro’s of using a professional insurance agent website management platform
- Low or no upfront cost and low monthly fees
- All technical issues are handled by the platform
- Agent websites can be up in a matter of minutes
- Updating the site is easy with no additional costs
- No need to pay for an expensive website designer
- Regular content updates are included in the price of the platform
- No surprises
Con’s of using a professional insurance agent website management platform
- You have less flexibility in the design of your site
- If you want to change providers, you will need to create a new site
- Some agent website platforms charge a set-up fee