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Local Business Retail Insurance – Could You Be Overpaying?

By Maria Hickey on July 8th, 2022

Getting the most appropriate retail business insurance in place is a key priority for any UK retail business, regardless of whether you run a traditional brick-and-mortar business or sell your products online.

No matter what size of retail business you run, from a sole trader with an e-commerce shop to a growing team of entrepreneurs opening more shops within local communities, you can never predict when things will go wrong.

This is why you need to take out comprehensive retail insurance to cover you for any eventualities. But at the same time, you need to ensure that you are not overpaying on your retail insurance or paying for cover that your business doesn’t need.

For example, many retail business owners are over-insured and paying high premiums for protection that may not affect their business.

Let’s say you own a brick-and-mortar store in your local town. You will need to get the insurance that protects your premises from severe weather events that could cause serious physical damage to your shop, fixtures and fittings and any stock lost due to an extreme weather event, such as storm damage or flooding.

But suppose you run your retail business online and don’t own a physical shop. In that case, you won’t need the property insurance element often included in many ready-made retail insurance cover products.

This is why you should never simply choose an off-the-shelf retail insurance package. No two retail businesses are exactly the same, so you won’t need identical insurance cover.

How Much Is Too Much When It Comes to Business Retail Insurance?

Being over-insured means that you will be paying more for the level of insurance cover that you really need. In many cases, you could pay too much for your business retail insurance when you don’t take the time to read the policy’s small print before purchasing your agreement.

Without realising it, you could end up being over-insured and paying more for your policy than you need. For example, you may be paying for deterioration of stock cover when you have no perishable stock to insure or you may have cover for computers included but not own any computers in your business.

Many retail businesses are run from premises rented from a commercial landlord, and they don’t realise that it is the landlords’ responsibility to take out building insurance. This means some business owners are paying extra for policies that include building insurance when it isn’t needed.

You Didn’t Read the Small Print

As mentioned above, many retail business owners end up paying for insurance cover that doesn’t apply to their business, such as for vehicles they don’t run or for building insurance on premises they don’t own.

This is why you should always take the time to read the small print of any retail insurance and small business policy before you sign on the dotted line to ensure you are not paying to cover risks that don’t apply to your business.

All these little extra expenses can be a real drain on your bank account over time, especially if you let them run uncontrolled throughout the life of your insurance policy. And this will continue, if you allow your insurance to renew automatically.

With all the day-to-day tasks and distractions you have when running your retail business, it can be challenging to set aside some time to pay attention to the small print of your insurance policy. But if you can, it may save you a lot of money and will be well worth your time.

Signs You Could Be Overpaying

If you are worried that you are currently overpaying on your retail business insurance, there are signs you can look for to help identify where you are paying too much or paying for cover your business doesn’t need.

As a business owner, you must be careful not to pay over the odds for essential cover such as employer’s insurance. If you employ staff, you will need to take out employer’s liability insurance by law, but check that you are not paying to cover 20 staff members when you only employ five. This change could potentially save you hundreds of pounds.

Do you have industry-specific insurance? Although insurance coverage can have umbrella terms such as ‘retail business insurance’, this doesn’t mean that all retail business insurance packages will suit your needs.

For example, if you run a small brick-and-mortar shop by yourself as a sole trader and operator, employ no staff and only sell products that you make yourself, you will need very different retail business insurance cover to a local convenience store, employing a handful of staff and selling multiple commercial products.

It is essential to work with a specialised business insurance provider who can build the insurance elements you need into your policy and leave out the ones that you don’t need. This will ensure that you will no longer be over-insured and over-paying for your retail business insurance.

Your Insurance Policy Is With A Generic Insurer

Did you take out your insurance with a standard insurance provider? Unfortunately, not all insurance providers are the same. Most standard insurance providers cater to the domestic market, so they will offer more suitable insurance for homeowners than business owners.

Getting your retail business insurance from a specialist provider, like Brisco, that caters specifically to the business community is far better. You will have a better chance of building an insurance policy to suit your needs.

You’ve Forgotten to Keep Your Insurer Updated

When an insurance provider assesses your risk and creates a policy for you, they will consider many risk factors when building the policy that may not apply any longer.

For example, have you improved the security of your business premises by adding CCTV or a new burglar alarm system? Have you replaced your standard doors with security doors, added roller shutters to the front of your property, or installed a new fire protection system with added smoke alarms and sprinklers?

Any upgrades or improvements to your business premises can make you eligible for discounts on your retail insurance. This is why you should update your insurer with the details of any modifications or upgrades you make to the security of your premises.

You Just Accept the Annual Renewal

It pays not to become complacent over your insurance renewal, as you could pay more for your cover. If you never take the time to review your current policy before it renews, you may be paying too much or fail to have the cover your business needs to be secure.

For example, you may have taken the original policy out when you employed just two staff, but now your business has grown and expanded to hire more staff, but your policy doesn’t reflect these changes.

Comparing retail business insurance quotes with Brisco Business makes sure you’ll only pay for the cover you need, and avoid investing in cover you don’t need.


Retail business insurance comes with many flexible options, but you need to ensure that the cover you take out is right for your individual business.

This is why it is in your best interests to speak with a specialist retail business insurance provider like Brisco to ensure you have the proper coverage. Our team can help you compare business insurance policies and find the one that provides the most value for your money.

Maria Hickey

For more than 20 years, Maria has worked in the insurance sector and has extensive underwriting and customer service expertise. Maria is an experienced Senior Underwriter with a particular specialism for shop, office and surgery related insurance.

All articles by Maria Hickey

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