Car Insurance Company Comparison Websites Reviewed: The Pros & Cons
Car insurance companies all calculate their rates differently, and so premiums can be dramatically different from one company to the next. That’s why it’s so important to compare real auto insurance quotes side by side before you buy a policy.
Unfortunately, there’s no supermarket shelf for insurance. Instead, there are tons of car insurance comparison sites — and they’re not all equally helpful. Some sites provide accurate, real-time car insurance quotes while others just convince you to click a link which sends you to the insurance company’s site, so they can earn a commission (this is called lead generation.) And others hand out your personal information like candy, so you get pelted with calls, texts, and emails from insurance salespeople.
So what’s the best car insurance comparison site, and which ones should you avoid? We tried 10 of them, using a sample driver persona: a 28-year-old single woman in Virginia who owns a 2010 Honda Accord. Here’s what we found out.
The 10 Best Car Insurance Comparison Sites
Since 2013, Compare.com has been helping U.S. drivers compare real, unbiased car insurance quotes from more than 50 trusted auto insurance brands. Compare.com gets 4.6 stars (excellent) from Google reviewers.
Pros of Compare.com:
- You get genuine, personalized car insurance quotes presented side by side, so you can compare them and choose the best deal for you. Try it for yourself: Compare quotes and save!
- When you find the lowest rate, there’s an easy path to buy online or by calling the insurer directly.
- Compare.com keeps users’ personal info safe, so they won’t be bombarded with multiple phone calls and emails.
Cons of Compare.com:
- Compare.com doesn’t feature every insurer, though they do have over sixty insurers signed – most consumers can expect to see five to six rates from different carriers.
- Given the accuracy of the platform, the form to get a quote is longer than some other auto insurance companies.
The Zebra Review
Founded in 2012 in Austin, TX, TheZebra.com compares insurance quotes from auto insurance companies all over the country. Their quote page offers a mix of rates from car insurance carriers and ads featuring no actual rates.
Pros of The Zebra:
- You can enter your info to get your personal “Insurability Score,” which promises some insight into how insurers view your risk.
- The process is fairly simple and straightforward, and the user interface is intuitive
Cons of The Zebra:
- Several insurers will display ads instead of actual rates, so you have to click through to their websites.
- Insurance quotes aren’t ranked from cheapest to most expensive, and coverage levels vary, making it hard to compare quotes side by side.
- Some insurance quotes say, “Price shown is a soft quote,” which means it may not be accurate.
Founded in Cambridge, MA in 2013, Insurify says it uses artificial intelligence to match customers with car insurance quotes, helping them save an average of $489 per year on their car insurance. Insurify features a mix of rates from carriers and click-through ads placed by car insurance companies.
Pros of Insurify:
- The quote process is simple and intuitive.
- Insurify offers a “Track Rates” option to let you know when prices in your state go down.
- Insurify.com’s rating on Google is 4.8 stars (excellent)
Cons of Insurify:
- Several insurers won’t show you quotes — you have to click through to their website and go through the quote process a second time.
- By using Insurify, you automatically grant permission for insurers to contact you “using live operators, automated telephone dialing systems, pre-recorded voice, text messages and/or emails.”
Gabi is a little different than most other insurance comparison sites listed here. Gabi calls itself an “insurance concierge” and promises no typing info into long forms. Instead, you give Gabi access to your current insurance account, or upload your policy documents.
Pros of Gabi.com:
- The company says it finds savings for 70 percent of its customers, and they save $720 on home and auto insurance, on average.
- If you hate filling out forms, Gabi is an appealing alternative.
Cons of Gabi.com:
- You may have privacy concerns about giving a third-party company access to your insurance records.
- The process isn’t form-free — you still have to create an account and enter a bunch of info.
Review of Auto Insurance Lead Generators
What’s a lead generator? These are companies that, rather than listing auto insurance quotes from different carriers, instead list ads placed by different auto insurance companies. When a user clicks through, some or all of their information may be passed through to the auto insurance company, and the company may call or e-mail the user to try and complete the quote.
EverQuote offers comparison shopping for home, life and car insurance, billing itself as the largest online marketplace for insurance shopping in the United States. Founded in Cambridge, MA, Everquote mostly offers ads placed by auto insurance carriers, with some insurance rates provided by Answer Financial. They give consumer’s the option to be reached by phone, e-mail, or to bridge over to carriers’ websites.
EverQuote also offer EverDrive, a telematics app that can measure your driving and offer feedback on how safe your driving habits are.
Pros of EverQuote:
- Offers pre-filled data fields and a “look up my info” option to save time.
- Makes it easy to opt out of emails and calls from insurance companies
- EverQuote offers a free app called EverDrive to help you improve your driving.
Cons of EverQuote:
- You may not get any real quotes! The company says, “we only show you prices when we’re certain that’s what you’ll actually pay.” Of six insurance “matches” for our sample driver, only one included a dollar figure.
- EverQuote may send you to another comparison site. One of our ‘matches’ was TheZebra.
Texas-based insuranceQuotes.com offers auto, home, life, health, and business insurance quotes. Owned by All Web Leads, they offer primarily ad listings to different carrier sites, and reach out to consumers via phone and e-mail as well.
Pros of insuranceQuotes.com:
- The site gives you the option of saving money by bundling auto and home insurance.
- The quote process is short and fairly quick.
Cons of insuranceQuotes.com:
- You don’t get any real quotes. The site asked us to click through to insurers’ sites to get a quote.
- Options are limited. The company says consumers typically receive up to four offers when shopping for insurance on their site.
Our sample driver was given only three insurance companies — GEICO, Progressive and Elephant.
Insure.com is listed as one of the most expensive domain names ever sold — it cost $16 million in 2009. These days, it’s a fairly ordinary insurance comparison site that provides users with links to insurance companies (not actual quotes).
Pros of Insure.com:
- The process is extremely rapid, compared to other sites, because Insure.com doesn’t ask for much information.
- We like the site’s interactive calculators and other tools, which show you insurance rates by car model, car insurance discounts you might be eligible for and other useful info.
Cons of Insure.com:
- No real quotes! Our sample driver was given links to five insurance companies and told to click to get a quote.
QuoteWizard is a subsidiary of LendingTree that helps consumers compare auto insurers (and other types of insurance) head-to-head.
Pros of QuoteWizard.com:
- Simple and intuitive quote process
Cons of QuoteWizard.com:
- Results were lacking. When we entered information for our sample driver, we received a single insurance recommendation, making side-by-side comparisons impossible.
- No real quotes were displayed. We had to click through to the insurance company’s website to get a dollar-figure quote.
SmartFinancial.com is a sleek site that lets you compare auto, life, renters’, home and health insurance quotes.
Pros of SmartFinancial.com:
- SmartFinancial’s “Smart Rate estimate” tells you what similar drivers in your area pay for insurance, so you know if your quotes are in line with the norm.
- We like how the quote engine shows you your potential discounts as you go along.
- You can sort insurers by what they offer, such as mobile claim reporting or rideshare coverage.
Cons of SmartFinancial.com:
- Limited options — our sample driver was presented only with five brands, and three of these were just other car-insurance comparison sites.
- Few real quotes! Of the five options, only one had a dollar figure. The rest required us to click through to the insurers’ sites.
True to its name, carinsurancecomparison.com offers car insurance comparisons. Its interface is nearly identical to QuoteWizard.com, as they share an affiliation with LendingTree, and so its pros and cons are the same.
Pros of CarInsuranceComparison.com:
- Simple and intuitive quote process
Cons of CarInsuranceComparison.com:
- No comparison options for different companies. When we entered information for our sample driver, we received a single insurance recommendation.
- We were not displayed real rates. We had to click through to that company’s website to get a dollar-figure quote.