With the growth of Amazon and the increasing popularity of e-readers, bookstores in general have seen a steady decline in sales in recent years. But religious bookstores remain a bright spot in the publishing industry, even while some large chains have closed stores nationwide.
According to the Association of American Publishers, from 2017 to 2018 religious publishers saw an 8.1% increase in sales, while the overall industry saw a 3.2% drop in sales.
This is great news for owners of religious bookstores. And because your store is the culmination of years of hard work and a tremendous financial investment, keeping it afloat even in the face of challenges is your top priority.
Whether you own a single religious bookstore or you operate a small local chain, an independent insurance agent in your city can help you find customized business insurance that helps you protect your livelihood.
Why Do You Need Religious Bookstore Insurance?
Consider all of the things that could go wrong (and result in serious repair costs, loss of income, or a lawsuit) during the course of your workday.
Religious bookstore insurance should cover physical damage to your building or property, as well as your responsibility to financially compensate any customers or members of the public who get injured on your property or as a result of buying something from you. You might host events with religious figures, inviting large numbers of people on to your premises at one time.
A wide variety of costly problems can occur, including:
- Accidents, such as trips and falls in the store or parking lot
- Shopping carts or store fixtures causing injury or property damage in the store or parking lot
- Damage to your inventory (books, collectibles, small religious items or gifts, and other highly flammable or moisture-sensitive items due to some catastrophic or unexpected event (fire, smoke, weather), careless shoppers (a customer knocks down and destroys a display case), or vandalism
- Damage to your building, computer systems, fixtures, and furniture due to fire, smoke, water, or weather
- Loss of income due to a catastrophic or unexpected event (a fire damages part of your store, forcing you to close while repairs are made)
- Employee theft of cash or inventory
- Employee lawsuits related to discrimination or other claims
- Employee injuries (falling off a ladder, back injury due to heavy lifting)
- Cyber breaches (data breach of your online store)
If an unexpected event causes some kind of damage to your business, your religious bookstore insurance is there to help you recover.
What Does Religious Bookstore Insurance Cover?
Religious bookstore insurance should cover physical damage to your building or property, as well as your responsibility to financially compensate any customers or members of the public that get injured on your property or as a result of buying something from you.
In order to get the comprehensive coverage you need, you’ll likely need to purchase several basic policies as well as a few customized endorsements (add-ons to basic policies) or additional policies that fill any gaps in your basic coverage.
Commercial property insurance: This helps you rebuild or make repairs when an unexpected event — like a fire, a flood, hail, lightning, or a tornado — destroys your merchandise and your physical space (structure). It helps you replace, rebuild, or repair computers, cash registers, inventory, equipment, specialized furniture and fixtures, and more after a covered event.
Commercial property insurance is especially important to protect your inventory. Most of what you sell is made of paper and is highly vulnerable to fire, water, and smoke damage. A single event can wipe out your entire inventory, so it’s important to discuss your commercial property coverage needs with your independent insurance agent.
Business interruption coverage: This compensates for lost business income and pays for operating expenses if you must temporarily close after a covered loss (e.g., a fire damages your stockroom and part of the sales floor, and you must close your store during the rebuilding process).
Commercial general liability (CGL) coverage: This covers claims against your business due to negligence on the part of you or your employees. If someone is injured on your premises or as a result of your operations, your CGL policy pays for medical expenses or repair bills for the injured party. For example, if a customer sustains a deep laceration from a sharp edge on a bookshelf, your CGL policy would pay for related medical expenses.
Or if an employee collecting shopping carts in the parking lot accidentally hits a customer’s car and causes damage, your CGL policy would pay for any related repair bills.
If you are sued, liability insurance pays for your legal defense, court costs, and any settlements or judgments that you must pay.
You may be able to bundle your basic property and liability coverage together into a packaged policy (business owners policy, or BOP) designed for small business owners.
Other Important Religious Bookstore Store Insurance to Consider
You’ll probably need additional endorsements (add-ons) to your business insurance policies or additional stand-alone policies that offer coverage for situations that are excluded from coverage or that are not sufficiently covered under your basic property and liability policies.
- Commercial umbrella insurance provides excess liability protection to any of several other policies you might have. If a customer injury in your store leads to an expensive lawsuit that exceeds the limits of your commercial general liability policy, your commercial umbrella policy kicks in with higher coverage limits.
- Commercial auto insurance ensures that you’ll be able to pay for any physical damage or injuries you cause if you are in an auto accident while driving for business purposes. If you have a business-owned vehicle that you use for running errands, making deliveries, or for other business purposes, you will be covered by your commercial auto policy if you cause an accident.
- Workers’ compensation insurance is typically required for any business that has employees. It pays for lost income and medical expenses for employees who are injured on the job. Religious bookstore employees could be injured while stocking shelves, opening boxes with a sharp box cutter, or working with a repetitive motion.
- Sign coverage pays for damage to outdoor signs that are not attached to your building when the damage is caused by weather, vandalism, fire, etc.
- Utility interruption coverage provides income protection if you are unable to operate due to a covered utility (water, electrical) interruption.
- Employment practices liability insurance covers you if an employee sues you for discriminatory employment practices.
- Flood insurance covers damage to your commercial property that is caused by flooding. Books are highly susceptible to water damage. Your other commercial insurance policies don’t cover water damage caused by floods. But you can purchase commercial flood insurance from the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). An independent insurance agent can obtain quotes and help you apply for coverage.
- Valuable papers coverage pays to reproduce valuable papers such as financial documents, ownership records, and authenticity documentation for any vintage or rare religious texts in your possession or available for sale.
Cyber Liability Insurance for Online Religious Bookstores
If you operate an online religious bookstore, you likely need cyber liability insurance.
It’s not just large corporations that are at risk for a cybercrime like fraud, data breach, hacking, viruses, and theft of personal information. Any company that uses, transmits, or stores electronic information is at risk, even if you have appropriate electronic security systems in place.
And these days, that’s just about everyone.
Companies who are hit with a cybercrime can expect to face huge costs in the form of fines, damages, and legal settlements. What’s more, you’ll likely face long-term damage to your brand and reputation. If you simply handle customer credit cards in your brick and mortar store, you’re at risk. If you operate an online store, your risks are even greater.
Cyber liability insurance policies can vary depending on your needs, and typically cover a wide range of problems like data breaches, media or content liability, and more.
If you are sued because of a data breach or some other cybercrime, cyber liability insurance protects your business assets by paying for your investigative expenses, notification expenses (the cost to notify your customers of the breach), future credit card and fraud monitoring services for your customers, your legal defense, settlements and judgments, and even PR and other related expenses.
Be sure to ask a local independent insurance agent about how cyber liability insurance can help you protect your religious bookstore.
Don’t Forget about Crime Coverage
One of the most significant threats to your business is theft of inventory or cash. Nearly every retail store is likely to be the victim of a shoplifter at some point. What’s more, employees all too often steal property, money, and securities owned by their employers.
For a small religious bookstore, even a small cash theft can be difficult to overcome. Crime coverage protects your business from vandalism, shoplifting, and employee theft and dishonesty.
It can be purchased as a stand-alone policy or as an endorsement on another business insurance policy. It covers things like vandalism, theft, and shoplifting, as well as employee acts like forgery, alteration, unauthorized electronic funds transfers, credit card fraud, and more.
How Much Does Religious Bookstore Insurance Cost?
The cost to cover your religious bookstore with a comprehensive business insurance program will vary depending on:
- The size of your store
- Your store’s location
- The number of employees you have
- The types of products you sell
- The value of your inventory
- The types of coverage and the coverage limits that you require
- The crime and weather risk in your city
Find and Compare Quotes
An independent insurance agent can work with you one-on-one to determine the types and amounts of coverage you need. Your agent can get quotes from multiple insurance companies so you can evaluate the cost and coverage options and make the best choice.
Benefits of an Independent Agent
Our agents simplify the search process for finding the right religious bookstore insurance. They’ll walk you through the handpicked policy options and explain the details.
Most importantly, they’ll be there for you when claim time comes. They know the ins and outs of the process and will make sure your claim is handled appropriately.
The Lowdown on Online Quotes
Online quotes can be tempting. They are fast and easy to get — but are they accurate? And are you getting quotes for the right coverage? For business owners, choosing speed over accuracy can cost you.
Online quotes can’t and don’t see the whole picture. They can omit important coverage that will leave you devastated if something unexpected happens. And they can leave out cost-saving opportunities that an agent can help you take advantage of.
Instead of getting an online quote, find an independent insurance agent now, and get one-on-one consultation and affordable options for the best coverage for your unique needs.