About the Vero SME Insurance Index

By  Vero Insurance

In the 7 years since its launch, the SME Insurance Index has gained an industrywide reputation for being credible, thorough and most importantly, delivering actionable insights that help brokers adapt and thrive. The Index’s primary objectives is to arm insurance brokers with current industry trends and quality tools to help them engage with their current and prospective SME clients.

Every year, the SME Insurance Index seeks to:

  • Gauge general business sentiment and perceived risks – what keeps SMEs awake at night?
  • Understand trends in SME attitudes towards insurance and insurance brokers – how is this evolving?
  • Explore the SME insurance purchase journey – what is driving buying behaviour?
  • Measure purchase channel usage, intentions, and motivations – how many SMEs purchase their business insurance through a broker or directly from the provider? What motivates their decisions?


Since 2012, the Index has engaged with over 9,000 business owners and decision makers across Australia. Approximately n=1,500 owners and decision makers are interviewed every year. As with previous years, the 2018 study was divided into key stages:

1.  Quantitative Survey

A nationwide online survey of 1619 business owners and insurance decision makers was conducted, covering a range of business types, locations and sizes. The survey was conducted during September 2017 and the data was weighted by state and organisational size to current Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) data. The survey covered:

  • general business sentiment;
  • attitudes towards insurance;
  • insurance purchase process;
  • purchase channel (broker or direct);
  • attitudes towards insurance brokers;
  • expectations and impact of price changes;
  • demographics.

2.  In-Depth Qualitative Interviews

A series of interviews was conducted with 8 SME respondents representing a mix of business sizes, types, attitudes to insurance, insurance purchasing channels and demographics. These sessions were held at respondents’ workplaces during January 2018.

* This research was conducted by BrandMatters. See www.brandmatters.com.au

However, there is also an opportunity in this finding: given that many SMEs turn to their peers when thinking about business risk, how can brokerages encourage their existing clients to refer them to their friends, family and colleagues? Word of mouth is a very powerful source of new business for brokerages and yet how many brokerages actively encourage referrals? In previous editions of the SME Index we have learnt that 39% of potential broker clients would turn to word of mouth recommendations when looking for a broker.

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To see the full findings for 2018 and what they mean for brokers.

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