Case Study

Optimizing the Medicare Shopping Experience

Services in this project:

  • Sketch of a butterfly in black and white Envision

Improving the online Medicare shopping and enrollment process.  

Shopping for Medicare insurance can be a confusing process for consumers.  That’s why SummaCare, a provider-owned health insurance company based in Ohio, set out to better understand how prospective members search for, evaluate and decide on healthcare insurance in order to improve their customer experience.  Paragon worked with SummaCare to conduct website usability testing to uncover customer pain points – then turn those insights into opportunities by creating a strategic, prioritized roadmap for how to make their online shopping and enrollment process easier.  

The usability testing investigated how real customers use the SummaCare website to explore health plan options and enroll online.  Paragon conducted 16 one-hour remote usability testing sessions with both existing Medicare insured customers and newly eligible Medicare shoppers across both desktop and mobile devices.  What we found was that while prospective customers overwhelmingly found SummaCare’s plans appealing, design and usability issues often prevented them from finding all of the information they needed – and ultimately from being able to effectively and efficiently enroll online.  This presented a real opportunity to improve conversion by identifying and removing unnecessary friction points.  

Applying the usability findings, Paragon crafted a strategy and vision to detail what the ideal “future-state” online shopping and enrollment process should look like.  A strategic roadmap was developed that prioritized key features that would improve the customer’s shopping experience.  The approach included an MVP (minimum viable product) version of the redesigned SummaCare website that capitalized on quick-win opportunities to expeditiously bring the improved site to market, while also mapping out a robust backlog of improvements to be continually implemented to evolve and enhance the live site.

Paragon’s usability research and visioning project gave us a fresh look at how Medicare customers interact with our brand and a well-organized roadmap to systematically improve our digital experience.

Michelle Bisson, VP Marketing and Communication

Paragon’s usability research uncovered leaks in the conversion funnel at each of the “seek”, “decide”, and “enroll” stages of the Medicare shopping experience.  Identifying these barriers helped inform opportunities to alleviate them such as simplifying SummaCare’s homepage, rewriting content, enhancing search and filtering functionality to compare plans, and improving the enrollment form usability.

Mobile Usability

By testing usability across both desktop and mobile devices, we were able to uncover opportunities that were specific to the device.  For example, creating a fully responsive enrollment form and clearer buttons would deliver a more frictionless enrollment process that increases the likelihood of conversion.

Paragon analyzed the usability findings and transformed them into a high-level vision of how a prospective member would utilize the SummaCare digital ecosystem in an ideal state.  The visioning document outlined the ideal-state interaction flow as well as physical, digital and personal touchpoints across stages from those seeking Medicare insurance through the post-enrollment phase.   In the end, the visioning exercise informed a prioritized roadmap to deliver an improved website.