Esurance vs Allstate: Reviewing Top Insurance Providers
In recent years, we have all been inundated by advertisements for insurance options. The old guard of companies with their agents in every town have been challenged by a new breed of internet-era companies, where signing up for insurance can be done on your computer from home. Insurance consumers no longer make choices based predominantly on the choice of an agent, but also consider the convenience of online access.
One interesting choice that consumers face in the insurance battle is between Allstate and Esurance, the ultimate choice between the old guard of agent-based insurance and the new internet company. As of late 2011, Allstate owns Esurance and both companies are prolific advertisers, complete with big name spokespersons. But most consumers want to base their choice of insurer on something more than whether they prefer the stolid security of Dennis Haysbert or the dulcet voice of John Krasinski.
There are clear differences between the two insurers. Which one you should choose depends on what you most want out of an insurance company.
Allstate has been in business since 1931. That the company has endured for almost a century means Allstate is a stable, established business with a wide variety of offerings. Beyond the basic insurance coverages (home, auto, life, and health), Allstate can also offer business insurance and banking services. As a company, it can suit the needs of a customer who wants one-stop shopping for insurance as it intersects with financial planning.
Esurance takes a modern view of insurance, offering a direct-to-consumer product that eliminates the middle man, the agent. Esurance was created in 1999, so has a smaller history to draw from. As a result, the insurance offerings are limited to auto, motorcycle, and renters insurance. Esurance also allows customers to connect to other types of insurance through their site, partnering with other companies on homeowners, health, life, and pet insurance. While the coverage on those offerings isn’t provided by Esurance, the website makes it easy for customers to compare quotes and find the right policy for themselves.
Everything about Esurance is centralized, with fingertip access for consumers 24/7. From purchasing a policy to making a claim to adjusting deductibles, every interaction with Esurance can happen at any time from the comfort of your own home. Just connect to the internet or download the mobile app to your phone, and you’re off. Esurance has 16 offices nationwide, rather than agents in every state. Policy holders don’t have dedicated agents, but are rather paired with employees as specific needs arise.
Allstate still functions using the agent model. With a personalized agent, the common thought is that a consumer can usually count on a better level of customer service born from a personal relationship. With that, though, comes generally higher rates than those that Esurance offers. Esurance is generally regarded as having some of the lowest rates of any insurance provider. With its acquisition of Esurance, Allstate can appeal to customers looking for less personalized service alongside discount prices.
Both companies have an A+ rating from A.M. Best for financial strength. Unsurprising, as Esurance is an Allstate company. Having the financial security of Allstate behind it has allowed Esurance to focus on growing its brand without having to raise rates as other insurers have had to do.
Allstate has also been given an A+ rating in A.M. Best’s Insurance Reports. Both companies, though, have their fair share of complaints and satisfied customers. Satisfaction with Allstate overall is harder to quantify because agents are independent and the quality of service will vary from individual agent to agent.
Allstate or Esurance?
So which insurer is right for you? This will come down to what is more important to you.
Esurance is almost always the best choice because of its low rates, especially for those who view price as the most essential factor. With Esurance you can get the peace of mind of having your insurance financially backed by Allstate with the lower prices of an online broker. It is also the choice for those who prefer the convenience of direct-to-consumer insurance. Learn More
Allstate has built a dedicated and loyal customer base by consistently providing strong customer service. If you prefer to work with a personal insurance agent or if you want to bundle insurance and financial planning needs that go beyond vehicle, home, and rental insurance, Allstate is certainly the right choice for you, especially if you’re willing to pay a little bit more to receive that level of service and variety of product. Learn More
One-sentence summary: We like Allstate’s Esurance option because you get the financial backing and reputation of Allstate at reduced prices.