Whether you’re delivering a professional service or a physical good to your customers, it’s important to protect your business contents from theft, damage, or loss. After all, your contents are your livelihood. Imagine trying to operate an IT business without a computer or a coffee shop without coffee beans.
Below are a few tips to keep in mind as you get your small business up and running, or as you continue to achieve success:
Understand what constitutes “content.”
Business content includes all of your company’s physical property located inside your place of business, whether you’re renting, own your own building, or operate out of your house. Not only is your office furniture, supplies, computers, equipment, and machinery considered content, but also any inventory or stock you have. That means, if you own a clothing retail establishment, the apparel and other items held for sale would typically be viewed as contents that need protecting.
Determine its value.
To protect your content, you’ll need to know how much it’s worth. That means you’ll need to record how much you paid for the supplies, materials, equipment or machinery you have, as well as how much you’d receive if you sold the finished goods. If you own a building or office, the building itself is not included as part of the “content.”
Consider its location.
Do you keep your supplies in a warehouse, a store, or your basement? Are your finished goods located near a water source that could overflow? Is your home office in a safe part of town? The location of your contents will affect how safe they are and how much protection you’ll need to keep your business going if they are damaged or stolen.
Estimate your business’ growth.
The value of your business contents will also depend on how much your business is projected to grow in the coming months and years. If, based on your current sales, you plan to expand your business soon you may need additional supplies, which will increase the overall value of your contents. However much more you add in supplies, you’ll probably also want to add that much more insurance protection.
Find the right insurance coverage.
Work with your insurance agent or broker to determine the coverages that will protect your business and its contents. Depending on the size of your business, either a Business Owner’s Policy (BOP) for small businesses and entrepreneurs, or a Commercial Package Policy (CPP) for middle market firms, may be a good start. Both provide an all-in-one solution that includes property insurance to protect your business contents.