July is National Independent Retailers Month. As such, we would like to take this time to pay tribute to the small business owners who are the backbone of our local marketplaces. This is also a good opportunity to make note of some of the different insurance products that often go overlooked by small business owners.
We’ll split them up into three different areas:
(1) Your building and equipment
(2) Your product
(3) Your profits.
Your Building and Equipment
Your building is your home base. Maybe you run your business out of your home or even on-line. Same premise. If you don’t secure your location or your platform on which you do business, what have you got? Your location, quite literally, is the foundation upon which your business is built, and the insurance on your location is the foundation on all other insurance you put on your business is built.
You wouldn’t need any of the following if you didn’t secure your building or your online presence first. But think of it this way. Having all of the following reasons to insure your business means you are thriving or expect to be very soon. It means you have something worth protecting.
Equipment breakdown, whether it be mechanical, electrical, or computers, cooling equipment, boilers, etc., can foil your efforts in a big way. As a business owner you will want to have business interruption and utility interruption coverage, as well as coverage on specialty equipment that is unique to your industry, which very well may not be covered under a standard Business Owner’s Policy.
Directly related to equipment breakdown, Food Spoilage Insurance covers a restaurant or grocery store owner from losses incurred when, say, refrigeration equipment fails and huge supplies of food are rendered unsellable.
Product liability insurance is a specific form of liability insurance that protects a business owner from liability for defects in products he/she sells if manufactured by a third party. Similarly, Product Recall insurance covers the expenses involved in sending a recalled product back to the manufacturer.
While we’re on the subject of inventory, let’s talk about automatic increase of coverage for seasonal inventory. Every type of business has a boom season. This should be accounted for in your business owner’s property and liability coverage. Just remember to discuss it with your agent to make sure the amount of increase matches the amount of increased inventory, and that it matches the season in which that increase occurs for you. Every industry has its idiosyncrasies.
While it is true that you would not be in business in the first place were it not for your customers, without your customers, you could not make a profit. It is essential to protect that. It allows you to stay in business, more immediately, and it is also your nest egg, down the road.
Cyber crime is ever increasing as a peril of owning a business, but employee crime is another, even more overlooked area of commercial insurance, simply, probably, because employer like to think the best of the people filling the roles they themselves hired them for. But employers’ instinct is not perfect, and neither are employees. It does happen. If one of your employees steals from you or from your clients, your business owner’s policy can protect you from the fallout.
Money and Securities insurance covers you from the loss of large amounts of cash lost in the event of your business having a fire or other destructive calamity. Directly related, Extra Expense Coverage pays for costs beyond regular operating expenses, so your company can continue operating while a property loss that is covered by your insurance is being repaired or replaced.
You’ll notice that each area, in some way, encompasses your clientele. And where would you be without them? All of your insurance is there to protect you, but it is also there to make your business a more secure environment for your clientele, and to make your business a more reliable source of your product or service.
If you’re a business owner and are looking to more comprehensively protect your commercial assets, reach out to us today!