The shoe sale business is one that continues to thrive despite fluctuations in the economy. Even without changes in styles and trends, shoes eventually wear out and must be replaced. If you have made the sound business choice of opening a shoe store, you will need to be sure to protect your investment with a suitable business insurance package that matches your coverage needs just as well as your shoes match your outfit. Independent insurance agents can help you build a shoe store insurance portfolio that covers your specific business from its various exposures.
2014 Shoe Store Industry Facts From IBISWorld
- There are approximately 11,600 shoe store businesses operating in the United States.
- These stores employ more than 216,000 people.
- The shoe store industry generates about $35 billion in revenue each year.
What Could Go Wrong at a Shoe Store?
Shoe stores are relatively low-risk retail establishments, and this is reflected in lower insurance premiums than are required of many other types of retail stores. However, the hazards are real and have the potential to destroy the well-being of your business unless you have the proper insurance coverage in place. For example, how would your business be able to handle the following scenarios without insurance?
- A fire breaks out in a neighboring building and spreads to your store. Though only a small portion of your inventory is burned, much of it is damaged by water and smoke.
- A customer is trying on some stiletto heels, and her foot gets caught in a snag in the carpeting. She falls, breaking her ankle and wrist in the process. She sues your business for the cost of her medical treatment, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
- An employee is on a step ladder reaching for a shoe box on a top shelf in your storage area and is injured when the ladder slips out from underneath that employee's feet.
What Types of Insurance Should You Consider for Your Shoe Store?
When you purchase a commercial insurance policy for your shoe store, you will find that you have a number of insurance options to choose from. An independent insurance agent can help you determine which options are right for your shoe store and the coverage limits that will sufficiently protect your business. Some coverage types you may want to discuss with your agent include the following:
- Building insurance: Most shoe store owners rent their retail space, but if you own the building in which your shoe store is housed, you will need to insure its structure with building insurance.
- Business property insurance: This insurance covers the property you keep inside your store, including your inventory of shoes, shelving, displays, signage, computers and cash registers. Covered events include such hazards as wind and storm damage, fire, theft and vandalism.
- Commercial general liability insurance (CGL): This coverage is nearly always included with commercial insurance policies. It provides your store with coverage for legal defense fees, court costs and financial damages if the business is sued for a covered event. Examples of what is covered under a CGL include injuries or property damage suffered by third-party interests while in your retail establishment (premises liability) and injuries suffered by customers because of faulty products sold in your shoe store (product liability).
- Business income insurance: If a covered disaster forces you to temporarily close your shoe store while repairs are made, this insurance will provide a continuation of income that will enable you to meet your regular monthly expenses until you can reopen. Coverage is typically limited to one year.
- Workers’ compensation insurance: This insurance protects your business from lawsuits related to employee injuries by providing compensation for wage replacement and medical care for job-related injuries. Most states require employers to carry this coverage.
- Cyber liability insurance: This is a new type of insurance that protects your business from financial damage related to hackers accessing customer information such as credit card numbers.
- Employment practices liability insurance: Also known as EPLI, this insurance protects your business if an employee sues for a perceived illegal business practice such as discrimination, harassment or wrongful termination.
Additionally, as a business owner you may need to purchase health insurance, life insurance and policies that can protect your interests if your shoe store business is a partnership. An independent insurance agent can help you find and compare policies for the coverage you need.
Why an Independent Insurance Agent Is Your Best Option
When you purchase insurance for your shoe store, you have three options. You can build your coverage on your own, you can work with an agent who represents a single insurance company or you can work with an independent insurance agent who is free to shop around for coverage. Working on your own, you may end up with unrealized coverage gaps or may have questions about whether certain coverage options are a good idea for your shoe store. Captive agents work for a single insurance company and have limited coverage options. Independent agents, on the other hand, work for you and can save you money by building a competitively priced policy portfolio that meets your coverage needs. Find a Trusted Choice® independent insurance agent near you to learn more.