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What is shop insurance?

Shop insurance is a form of cover that protects your business against various risks and claims. These can come from customers, who may have injured themselves or become ill through your products, or from damages inflicted through any employees you’re responsible for. If you’re a business which is customer-facing, you may wish to protect your shop’s building, its contents and stock, as well as its employees.

Do I need insurance for my shop?

The only type of business insurance that’s a legal requirement is employers’ liability insurance. If you employ other staff, this will provide cover for any employees who are injured or suffer from an illness caused by working for your business.

Your shop is your livelihood, so it makes sense to ensure you have the right cover in place to protect you against anything else that might affect your business. You may have stock on the premises, which needs protecting against theft and damage. You’ll also need to consider what cover is required to protect you if members of the public injure themselves in your shop. 

It’s also worth thinking about what would happen if you had to close the shop for a period, for whatever reason. What would be the implications of a few days or even weeks without trading?

What does business insurance for shops and retail cover?

There are many things that you may want to protect your shop against. With each form of risk, there’s a suitable form of cover. When taking out shop insurance, here are some examples of cover you can include:

  • Employers’ liability insurance: If you employ any members of staff, you’re legally required to have this insurance cover. It protects you if your employees are injured or become ill while working for you.
  • Public liability insurance: If someone is injured at your shop or their property is damaged, you can claim on your insurance to cover any compensation due to them, or any legal costs if they take you to court. With members of the public in your shop every day, this is particularly important.
  • Business interruption insurance: This protects your business if you’re unable to trade for a while, for example because of a fire or a flood. Buildings and contents insurance will cover the fixtures, fittings and stock, but business interruption cover will help protect you against lost sales and costs incurred while you get things up and running again.
  • Buildings insurance: If you own the building where your shop is located, you’ll need buildings insurance. This usually covers the cost of repairs to a building’s structure, or even full re-building if needed.
  • Contents insurance: Your stock is what keeps you in business, so it’s important to have this cover to insure you against theft or damage. It can also cover shelving, furnishings, computers, till systems and other business equipment you may have on the premises.

Consider if you need to cover for a seasonal increase in the value of your stock, for example in the run up to Christmas. Shops selling food and drink may also want to check for cover for frozen stock and items of high risk at being stolen for example, alcohol and tobacco. Some businesses such as antiques shops, gift or electronics shops might want to check the cover for high-value items. You will also need to understand if your goods are covered while in transit or if you need additional cover. Stock is generally insured at its trade price.

Frequently asked questions

Do I need shop insurance for an online shop?

Even if your shop is run as an online business, you’ll still face many of the same risks and claims against you and should consider cover you may need. As an online retailer, you’ll still have stock that is at risk of damage and theft, and you will still legally require employer’s liability insurance, if you’re responsible for any staff.

You should treat your online business like a regular one, considering all of the potential risks and appropriate cover.

Shop insurance in high-risk flood areas

If your shop is in an area which is deemed high risk for flooding, you’ll need to consider the potential impact that may have on any business building and contents insurance you’re looking to protect yourself with.

Many insurance providers will raise their premiums significantly, so consider your options carefully, and shop around to find the best deal for you.

How do I get started?

All you need to do is start a quote with us and we’ll help you find the most competitive prices for the various kinds of cover you might need for your shop.  

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