With online business now accounting for almost 18% of all retail sales in the UK, life is already difficult for the traditional shop. Protecting your retail business against the many risks and perils it faces remains as important as ever – and is likely to grow in importance as the competition increases from online sales.
The key to protecting your high street, suburban or corner shop enterprise lies, of course, in business insurance for retail shops – so, let’s take a closer look at what it typically involves and the way, here at Specialist4Business, we may help:
- you might think that if you lease your shop premises, the landlord alone is responsible for insuring the structure and fabric of the building;
- this may be true to a certain extent, but beware that there are many different types and levels of cover your landlord might or might not have arranged – you need to check exactly what is covered in any insurance already arranged by your landlord;
- this is unlikely to include damage to your all-important shop window or any signage and displays, for example, let alone the expensive fittings you are likely to have installed;
- it is not only your shop fittings which need the protection of appropriate insurance, but also the valuable stock you are likely to be carrying for sales to your customers;
Public liability insurance
- one of the risks that it might be tempting to overlook – but which you do so at your peril – is public liability insurance;
- as the shopkeeper, you have a general duty of care to prevent anyone injuring themselves or having their own property damaged – and this includes visitors to your shop, your customers, your neighbours and passing members of the public;
- if an accident happens – your sign falls down on top of someone’s head, for example – you stand to be held liable and ordered to pay a hefty sum in damages;
- since these may assume very substantial sums – especially in the case of personal injury – public liability insurance for retail shops typically offers at least £1 million in indemnity;
Employers’ liability insurance
- in most cases, if you employ anyone else to help run your shop, you have no choice in the matter – the law says that you must have employers’ liability insurance;
- this is quite separate to and in addition to any public liability cover you may have – it is designed to meet the specific claims of any employee, past or present, who may have been injured or contracted a longer-term illness as a result of the work they have been doing for you;
- you’ve probably taken some comfort from the fact that the majority of the products you sell bear a manufacturer’s guarantee or warranty;
- unfortunately, this does not absolve you of any liability if a product causes one of your customer’s an injury or financial loss – you may still be held responsible;
- product liability insurance is necessary, therefore, to indemnify you against such claims.
Times may be tough for shopkeepers, but with the protection of business insurance for your retail shop, there are safeguards against some of the financial risks you face.