When an accident or tragedy happens, does the Geico Mobile App rise to meet customers’ needs?

A successful app experience can carry a lot of weight in a user’s opinion of the company—and a terrible app experience can carry even more. Overall, companies need to have a mobile app strategy that provides customers with a positive UX that carefully balances form and function.

The Geico mobile app proves that a positive user experience isn’t just about slick designs—and the proof is in the numbers. Of the top five car insurance companies by market share, the Geico app is, by far, the highest rated:

  • GEICO: 4.6 Google Play, 5 on Apple
  • State Farm: 4.1 Google Play, 3 on Apple
  • Allstate: 4.1 Google Play, 3.5 on Apple
  • Farmers: 3.4 Google Play, 2.5 on Apple
  • Progressive: 4.0 Google Play, 2.5 on Apple

Moreover, app user reviews on Google Play and the iTunes App Store gush about how positive the customer experience is—both on a claims side, and on policy management side. Here’s just a small example of the love-fest featured in the reviews:

“The GEICO App makes bill paying LITERALLY a one-step process that even gives me a printable/screenshot-able (new word, lol) confirmation receipt, as well as puts all the necessary GEICO features at my fingertips without redirecting me to the web. It’s TRULY all in the App. …even uploading documents, photos, reports, and anything related to an accident/claim. I use the App on my Samsung Galaxy Note 5, and use the S-Pen and Air Functions to make it even more useful.”

“I wish I would have known how easy this app was years ago. I was able to postpone a pay, change my address and lower my monthly payment so quick and easy! It was amazing! I have never been happier to be a Geico customer!!”

When I first opened the app, I was surprised to find that the visual design felt a little clunky—the wallet graphics, cards, and icons felt a bit dated. From my standpoint, the overall look and feel could be updated to further enhance the use, but it would be the equivalent of adding a cherry to the top of your sundae—arguably you might not need it, but it is a definite crowd pleaser, and the sundae won’t feel complete without it.

The app itself is highly usable and, in my book, that’s where it scores the most points. Users can move through the initial information stages quickly, and the main screen has an easily navigable series of icons with common tasks. Again, the design here could use a makeover, but the user experience is solid.

Now the true test for any insurance app is how it performs in the most difficult of circumstances—right after something bad has happened. Luckily, I haven’t had to test this specific functionality, but user reviews consistently mention that the end-to-end claims experience is excellent.

A few other nice features include:

  • In case you’re in a situation where you don’t have service but need your insurance card, the app saves your card right to your phone, so it’s available offline.
  • There are a few delightful touches throughout the UX. I don’t want to fully spoil the experience here by saying what those are, but I recommend keeping an eye out for some extras and a “surprise” that gives you a bit of content.

And, of course, there were some areas that I felt needed improvement:

  • The Touch ID function should be seamless. As of right now you have to press a button to initiate it.
  • Features like “Find Gas” or “Find Parking” seems unnecessary to have. If a user is on their phone, then Google maps can do things like this better. They’re at the second level of the menu, so they don’t get in the way, but they still feel extraneous.
  • The transition animations are a little odd. Items fall onto the screen, and it doesn’t entirely make visual sense.
  • Starting a new claim takes you to mobile web portal instead of allowing you to stay in-app.

Overall the app’s greatest strength is in its efficiency—it gets you to the most important features quickly. The visual design could definitely be improved, but usability matters far more than style points when you’re on the side of the road, shaken up after an accident.