I bought car insurance for my Peugeot 206 three years ago through the confused.com comparison website. This is the site I generally use because it was one of the first I can remember making it to market to compare insurance quotes, and I have stuck with it ever since.
I quite literally chose the cheapest insurer available, which was 1st Central. In my case I decided that the value of my vehicle wasn't enough to warrant taking out a high quality policy, so I voluntarily set my own excess at the maximum £1000. This is very easy to do through Confused, as you just slide the bar over to set your excess. Since this is greater than the value of my car, I in effect am only insured for 3rd party because I could never actually make a claim for damage to my own car.
There was no deposit to pay on this policy. The only thing that made it slightly annoying was having to email pictures of my driving licence, and also a copy of my previous insurance documents for some reason. I can't remember why they needed this, but it seemed like a lot of work, especially when I have set up other policies over the phone before in a 15 minute call without this requirement.
The entire process of setting up the policy was done via email and attachments of photos etc, without me ever speaking to a human. Although I managed to complete it in the end I imagine maybe older people would have found this a complete barrier to going with First Central.
However, once the policy was set up there have been no issues at all. I am being charged a rate of around 30% APR to pay by monthly instalments which, even though I could pay annually, I choose to do because I prefer to be in control of my money, rather than surrender a large sum in one go.
The premiums have only increased by a pound or so over the last few years so I have never considered changing the policy. Convenience is a concern, and I have no desire to go through the lengthy policy setting up process with a different insurer again. However were the price to increase by any significant sum I would quickly reconsider and move it in order to get a better deal.
The use of a price comparison website to set up insurance made an enormous difference to me in terms of choosing the company I did. Without it I imagine I would have used a company I was used to such as my bank, or a major UK insurer. However the convenience of Confused.com searching the entire market brought me to this insurer and also gave me the confidence that having being listed there must be a degree of reliability to them.