Small Business

As with health insurance and car insurance, small business insurance is hopefully something you never have to use. But when something unexpected happens, having business insurance can be the difference between your business’s continued success or failure.

Unfortunately, a lot of businesses aren’t covered. According to the SBA, 44% of small business owners have never purchased business insurance, even after operating for at least one year. By purchasing the right types of business insurance, you can protect your company’s assets against damage and legal claims.

Many small business owners give up on purchasing business insurance because of how confusing the process can be. Every business will need a slightly different insurance package depending on the size of the company, the location, and the industry – and the choices can be overwhelming, especially if you’ve just started your business.

In this guide, we’re going to give you the inside track on small business insurance, as we see it from over 30 years of experience – we’ll break down the different types of business insurance, how much they cost, and the purchasing process to find the best small business insurance coverage for you.

What is business insurance?

As an individual, you’ve likely dealt with insurance policies before – car insurance, renters insurance, health insurance, and more. Each of these different types of insurance, of course, helps protect you in the case of the unexpected, if you get in a car accident, of your apartment floods, etc.

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Even if you need to close due to health and safety concerns, there are many ways of retaining customers during the Coronavirus pandemic. Social distancing, while good for public health, is bad for small businesses. Foot traffic has dropped steeply since the coronavirus outbreak as more and more customers stay at home and self-quarantine. Many business owners are worried that the impact of COVID-19 will be deeper and more long-lasting than anticipated. As a result, merchants in every industry are looking for ways to keep their customers during the coronavirus lockdown. Here are some tips to keep your employees and customers engaged from a distance.

Communicate proactively with your customers

The situation is evolving rapidly, and no one is quite sure what news each day will bring. Customers can empathize with merchants facing a crisis, as long as you communicate with them properly. Let your customers know if you’re closing your doors, changing your hours, and what steps you’re taking to keep your employees and work environment safe and clean. If your store is closing, notify your customers on your social media channels, through email, and on your website. If your store is staying open, describe the steps you’re taking to mitigate risk. Beyond letting customers know the logistics of your approach, give them a way to stay connected. Customers spending more time at home will still need to shop for things. Direct consumers to your e-commerce store, take orders over social media, and be prepared for more people to view your website than in previous months.

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If you’re a business owner you need a plan to shield your business during the coronavirus pandemic. To keep your company healthy during the coronavirus pandemic and positioned well for success when it’s over, take advantage of these contingency and business planning tips.

Put health and safety first

If you’re a sole proprietor, prioritize your health first. Limit your travel and maximize home office communication and collaboration tools.

If you have employees, keep them informed of travel restrictions, government announcements, and offer them work from home options. If that’s not feasible and your business is considered essential, take steps to minimize virus transmission risk at your place of work. This includes social distancing, splitting shifts, and frequent sanitization.

It’s also wise to establish procedures for staff to report if they are feeling unwell, are absent, or if they suspect exposure to the coronavirus or infection.

Assess the impact on operations

What will happen to your business during this crisis? To help answer that question, run best-case and worst-case scenarios and develop contingency plans for each. Include timeframes in your assessment that consider the impacts of the pandemic if it becomes a six-month, one-year problem, or more (let’s hope that’s not the case).

For example, if critical personnel became sick or had to look after family members, how will your business accommodate these changes? Try to identify others who can step in and learn key tasks such as retirees, family members, or independent contractors and freelancers.

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