According to the published data by Insurance Association of China, Internet insurance boomed up in China during 2012-2015. The premium revenue increased roughly 20 times, and the penetration rate reached 9.2% in 2015. However, the premium revenue of Internet insurance stopped its growing trend and started to decline since 2016 together. The penetration rate slumped as well continuously and was only 5% in 2018. The insurance policy change brought Internet insurance industry short-term difficulty while on the long run helps the Internet insurance industry to develop more healthily.
Internet life insurance premium witnessed two-year negative growth. Given that Internet life insurance is composed mainly by financial insurance, the too-simple structure of Internet life insurance at its initial stage of development makes the industry very sensitive to policies changes. When it comes to different segmented insurances, premium revenue of life insurance in the narrow sense was 67.5 billion Yuan, declined 55% compared with 2016 while health insurance premium revenue had a YoY increase of 108%, becoming the only rising star in Internet insurance industry. Currently, insurance companies still prioritize short-term health insurance. But lifelong serious illness insurance, term life insurance and other insurances that benefit the long-run development of insurance companies encountered difficulty to popularize in online market. Therefore, how to shift the development focus from short-term insurances to long-term insurances may be the most urgent problem for all insurance companies in the future.
In Internet property insurance field, the price advantage of Internet automobile insurance has disappeared along with the pricing revolution of commercial automobile insurance. Meanwhile, Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission strengthened the regulation on third-party automobile insurance online platforms, which lead to the development difficulty of Internet automobile insurance. Until 2018, automobile insurance started to recovery. Different form Internet automobile insurance, Internet property insurances other than automobile insurance maintained its fast development. In 2018, Internet property insurances other than automobile insurance have taken a share of nearly 50% in Internet property insurance, which to a large extent benefited from the penetration of Internet property insurance in more scenarios and the admiring growth of accident health insurance. However, automobile insurance as the most important part in property insurance may be transformed by the Internet and Internet automobile insurance may encounter a new round of growth together with the application of insurance technologies and automobile network.