comparis.ch – a successful idea
comparis.ch is the leading Swiss Internet comparison service. On www.comparis.ch, consumers can easily and quickly compare the rates and services of health insurance providers, other insurers, banks, telecommunications providers and healthcare services, and also the prices of properties, cars, motorcycles and various consumer goods. Thanks to the comparisons and ratings from comparis.ch, consumers can directly switch to the provider with the best price-performance ratio. comparis.ch was founded in 1996 by Richard Eisler, economist.
Since June of 2000, comparis.ch has been a public limited company based in Zurich and currently employs over 180 persons. comparis.ch also has an advisory board. Every quarter, comparis.ch publishes the Konsumentenstimme (in German and French only) with facts, figures and background information on current consumer issues.
- Independence is the highest principle
- Millions of users trust comparis.ch
- Revenues and expenditures of comparis.ch
- Benefits and revenues in the basic health insurance sector
- The role of comparis.ch on the insurance market
- What is the difference between comparis.ch and brokers/agents?
- Current services offered by comparis.ch
- Principles governing the compilation of the comparisons
Independence is the highest principle
comparis.ch's only commitment is to the consumers' interests and we do not mince matters if our experts detect unfair rates which might deceive consumers. Many providers already had to revise their offers after public criticism from comparis.ch.
The comparisons from comparis.ch are comprehensive and take into consideration all significant providers of an industrial sector who make their rates available online. No provider is associated with comparis.ch. Furthermore, all of the comparisons are permanently online. No provider could be privileged by comparis.ch, as its competitors would discover this straight away and object accordingly. This guarantees the neutrality of our comparisons and ratings.
Millions of users trust comparis.ch
In 2017 comparis.ch had almost 80 million visits and thus counts among the most widely used Swiss websites. Four out of five Internet users know the independent comparison service. They appreciate the transparency of the comparisons and the opportunities to save money. comparis.ch sees this sign of confidence as a great mission to constantly offer reliable and neutral comparisons that are independent from the providers.
Revenues and expenditures of comparis.ch
If you have ever tried to compare offers for a certain product and find the right provider, you will know how difficult and time-consuming this is. Which provider is selling the product at what price? What are the conditions? Are the products really comparable or are they actually different products? comparis.ch employs more than 180 people whose mission it is to answer these questions for consumers. Each comparison – whether between insurance products, banks or mobile plans – is based on constant market observation and complex analyses.
comparis.ch finances the comparisons through advertising sales as well as the forwarding of clicks and the registering and processing of quote requests to the providers who wish to make use of these services. Depending on the area, the quotation service costs at least CHF 30 per request and is the same for all providers of the same sector. In return, the insurance companies and other providers are able to strongly reduce their expenses for customer acquisition, marketing, advertising, sales, call centres and administrative processes. Whether providers are included in the comparison and in what order they are displayed in the full view is independent of whether they make use of the comparis.ch services or not.
Benefits and revenues in the basic health insurance sector
comparis.ch is the pioneer of health insurance premium comparisons. The Health Insurance Act (KVG) guarantees policyholders free choice of basic health insurance. Since 1996, policyholders have been able to compare their health insurance premiums on comparis.ch They exercise their right in light of premium increases and change their health insurance model or their insurance provider.
3.5 million premium comparisons: comparis.ch is the leading Swiss Internet comparison service. In 2017, internet users in Switzerland performed over 3.5 million comparisons of health insurance premiums on comparis.ch for 4.9 million individuals*. This information service is free to the public and to health insurance companies and allows the insurers to save resources and money on information and advertising.
Compensation for premium comparisons and quote requests: Anyone wishing to change their provider after a comparison can request quotes through comparis.ch. The quoting process is efficient, fully automated and reduces the insurance companies' administrative costs. The health insurance companies pay comparis.ch only for the use of these quoting processes. In 2017, comparis.ch charged its partner companies roughly 9.6 million francs for these services related to social basic insurance. The annual costs for the premium comparisons were 1.90 francs per person.
The cost of telephone advertising and consultation services for comparison: Insurance providers pay a call centre around 100 francs for a consultation appointment. A consultation with an agent, a broker or a member of the provider's sales force costs another 100 francs without a full premium comparison. If, in addition to the 3.5 million premium comparisons on comparis.ch, it had been necessary to arrange an appointment plus a consultation, the insurance companies would have incurred costs of around 700 million francs. That is more than half what the insurers spend on their own administration. Administrative costs in 2016 amounted to a total of 1.3 billion francs, which is 4.7 percent of premiums.
* Comparisons can be made for more than one individual at a time (i.e. family members).
The role of comparis.ch on the insurance market
On 4 December 1994, the Swiss voters decided on a reform of the Health Insurance Act (KVG). This stipulated that policyholders should be able to choose and change their insurance companies freely. Therefore, since 1996, the health insurance companies have been in a competitive situation. comparis.ch has an important function in this competition:
- Since 1996, the Comparis comparison has been making the complex premium jungle transparent, clear and comparable. This is the only way to guarantee that the policyholders are able to properly exercise their freedom of choice based on full transparency and with a reasonable amount of effort.
- Thanks to the comparability, the insurance companies are under a greater pressure to offer cheaper premiums and maintain a high level of customer satisfaction, which is also compared at comparis.ch besides premiums. This also forces them to organise their administration in a particularly efficient manner, for example, without skimping on their service quality.
- If the policyholders were not able to compare the premiums online and request offers, they would have to pick up the phone and make the effort to obtain the information from numerous insurers. One telephone enquiry and its processing generate costs of about 100 francs for the insurer.
- The IT processes at comparis.ch are significantly more cost efficient. Calculations show that, due to the automatised Comparis processes alone, the health insurance companies can save up to CHF 500 million in administration costs.
- comparis.ch points out the financial advantages that come with alternative insurance models and optional deductibles. Thereby, these models are promoted, which is entirely in the spirit of the KVG (Health Insurance Act). They cause the policyholders to take up more personal responsibility with regard to health care and curb the rise in health care costs. Nowadays, over 60 per cent of policyholders have an alternative insurance model.
What is the difference between comparis.ch and brokers/agents?
- comparis.ch does not make any home calls. It is a passive information service for anyone who is interested.
- The policyholder needs to have the wish to change insurance. comparis.ch does not actively persuade anyone to switch.
- On comparis.ch, policyholders themselves decide which insurance suits them best.
- Everyone can compare their premiums with comparis.ch, no matter what age or health situation. If the preferred insurer does not offer the possibility to request quotes online, you may contact them directly by telephone, e-mail or letter. The insurers are obliged to accept all applicants. This obligation only applies to basic insurance, however.
- comparis.ch screens and rates the insurance offerings critically and advises against taking out unnecessary insurance.
- comparis.ch includes all health insurance companies in the comparison.
- Thanks to the automatised quote request feature on comparis.ch, the insurance companies need significantly fewer telephone agents and administrators – which reduces the processing costs. Most other providers are not yet able to handle new customer applications up to the signing of the contract with a fully automated online process.
Current services offered by comparis.ch
The users of the Comparis website can make comparisons on price-performance ratios in the following sections:
Principles governing the compilation of the comparisons
- The goal of comparis.ch is to offer comprehensive price-performance ratio comparisons in all business sections. comparis.ch therefore relies on the providers to make the according data available. Where this is not possible, comparis.ch at least tries to include all market-relevant providers in the comparisons.
- In the interest of market transparency, comparis.ch also supplies data of those providers who do not request it.
- In order to be included in a Comparis comparison, the providers' data need to be processed in such a way that they can be directly compared with the other providers' data. comparis.ch reserves the right not to include data in the comparisons if they do not meet this criterion.
- It is the aim of comparis.ch that at least 80 percent of all users be able to compare the products of their current provider with the competing offers.
- For all price-performance ratio comparisons, the Comparis neutrality guarantee applies.