Smartia is a Brazilian web site that provides quick insurance quotes to potential clients online. With one year on the Web, the free service is an ideal choice for anyone looking to save time and money by simulating the cost of car, home, health, travel, or life insurance from the convenience of their home computer or portable device. Within seconds of providing their relevant information, users gain access to a menu that displays insurance options from several companies. The more information users provide, the more accurate the search becomes.
We realize that the traditional method of selling and purchasing insurance products through a broker or brokerage firm is changing. In recent years, other sales channels for the distribution of insurance have developed: direct sales channels on the Internet and over the telephone. Whether the insurance segment is auto, motorcycle, travel, health, life, or any other insurance arrangement, the Internet is full of opportunities for insurers and insurance brokers. The Smartia portal brings clear and objective information on every aspect of coverage offered. Users can then use this information to easily make comparisons and then choose the option which best meets their individual needs. Smartia aims to be the easy, quick, and transparent choice for consumers.
Amazon EC2 hosts Smartia's sales portal. As part of that portal, the company uses the following services:
The following diagram illustrates Smartia's architecture:
Since we are building a new service that is the first of its kind in the Brazilian insurance market, we needed a solution with high elastic computing capacity to host and run Smartia. After a lot of research in local standard hosting services, none of them addressed our expectations or talked about the costs involved or computing growth capabilities.
Amazon EC2 was the unique solution that met our requirements and was the best and most robust Internet hosting solution. All of the other service providers we evaluated needed a higher initial investment and did not have any elastic capabilities.
We needed to start with a small infrastructure investment to test our solution and get market feedback. As our business started to grow, we received great feedback from the market as well as from the insurance companies. Smartia uses AWS to ensure that our solution handles the demand and growth. With AWS, we can scale our infrastructure according to our specific needs, quickly and securely.
The flexibility and low cost of Amazon Web Services is ideal for us. We saved almost $1 million in upfront costs during the first year. We have also experienced 100% availability without any decrease in performance, even with the increase in demand. There has not been any security issue of any kind.
A key component of our go to market strategy was to go live in a few days and be prepared to handle a large number of people accessing our solution. These two points were completely addressed by AWS. We were able to handle people accessing Smartia from all over the country, without any decrease in response times from our service. We closed our first year with more than 60,000 unique users accessing our solution per month without any pain.
Overall, AWS has exceeded all of our expectations.
To learn more, visit http://www.smartia.com.br/ .
Added June 14, 2012