SOURCE: SEMphonic

May 02, 2006 08:30 ET

CampaignTracker Health Insurance Industry Scorecard Finds Insurers and Major Health Providers Pale in Comparison to Internet Based Insurance Agents Operating Search Engine Marketing Campaigns

Ehealthinsurance.com Receives Search Engine Marketing Analytics (SEMA) Award for "Best Overall SEM Performance in the Health Industry"

NOVATO, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- May 2, 2006 -- SEMphonic, search engine marketing (SEM) analytics technology tool provider and web analytics consulting company, today released results from the CampaignTracker Health Insurance Industry Scorecard which showed that competition for the top of the health insurer heap is fierce with insurers, major health providers, Internet based insurance agents, and policy non-profits all jostling for visibility by the searching public. Among these four categories, the top three insurance agents are clear winners, well ahead of every other player and over nearly all the major health and insurance providers.

Ehealthinsurance.com received the Search Engine Marketing Analytics (SEMA) award for "Best Overall SEM Performance in the Health Industry." Ehealthinsurance.com takes the overall gold with the top PPC campaign and a strong placement for organic search position to be the only site with top positions in both areas. Insureme.com and netquote.com were prevented from completing the sweep of top spots by insurance agencies only by medicare.gov which finished in second position based on its #1 position in organic searches.

Among the big national health care providers, only Kaiser Permanente, Aetna, Humana and HealthNet succeeded in breaking into the top fifteen, with Kaiser Permanente winning best in breed at #5. Of the remaining representatives of the 10 largest health and insurance providers nationwide, half failed to break into the top 100 positions. Rounding out the top positions were large government health care offices (such as the Office of Personnel Management and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services) and the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Insurance agencies and larger private, non-profit and government organizations follow substantially different approaches to their web presence. Insurance agencies ride almost entirely on their PPC campaigns. Among paid ranking, agencies and insurance rate finders/ lead generators claimed all of the top 10 paid ranks except for two large insurance providers (HealthNet at #5 and Prescription solutions from Pacific Care at #10). The organic rankings revealed a fundamentally different set of players, with government agencies and non-profit organizations (such as the AARP or Kaiser Family Foundation) claiming all the top ten spots, except for two large insurance providers (www.aetna.com at #2 and humana.com at #5). Assurant deserves special mention for its approach of maintaining separate sites for overall coverage (assuranthealth.com), specialty coverage (assurantcards.com), and temporary insurance (temporaryinsurance.com), all of which perform strongly in the top 10 of their respective categories. (A notable exception to this pattern is assurantemployeebenefits.com, which finished at position 609, well behind assuranthealth.com and assurantdirect.com in the business buyer category.)

As a group, Agencies and Lead generators dominate the overall rankings as might be expected given the importance of search leads to their core businesses. Within the different segments of the markets different organizations come to the fore. Among health and insurance providers, kaiserpermanente.com beat out aetna.com on the strength of a stronger paid campaign. Among non-profit organizations, the Kaiser Family Foundation and the American Association for Retired Persons finished ten places ahead of America's Health Insurance Plans, an industry association, and nearly thirty places ahead of the California Health Care Foundation. As mentioned above, ehealthinsurance.com, insureme.com, and netquote.com finished well ahead of their competition in the Agency/Lead Generators sector.

These rankings are based on analysis by Campaign Tracker of search performance on Google and Yahoo for both organic and paid performance on a set of over three hundred keyword search terms from the health care industry, including terms such as "Health Insurance Plans," "Health Care Providers," "Family Health Insurance," "Vision and Dental," or "Employer Health Benefits." These terms were selected from a list of over 21,000 terms generated and rated by CampaignTracker based on the content of major health care competitor and industry sites, such as www.cigna.com, www.rwjf.org, or www.ahip.com.

To purchase a full copy of the study or to request a customized version, please contact Katherine Garvey at kgarvey@semphonic.com

About SEMphonic

SEMphonic has over 9 years of experience in the field of web analytics and Internet marketing. The company focus is to develop and deliver powerful online campaign tracking tools and web analytic consulting services. Now SEM practitioners gain accurate and faster methods to analyze and report on an entire campaign, from comparative PPC/SEO performance to in-depth competitor analysis. This provides SEM professionals with more rapid, comprehensive, and actionable insights to help improve SEM campaign performance.

SEMphonic provides these technologies, tools, and services to maximize the competitive edge for Agencies and companies such as American Express, WebMD, AOL, CyberTrader, Charles Schwab, Endless Pools, Hotwire, Intuit, Mediasmith, iCrossing, SurePoint Lending, and others. SEMphonic is headquartered in Novato, California. Visit us at www.semphonic.com for more information.

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