Developing a new product – insurance for online retailers


Hiscox banner shape mask mobile Hiscox banner shape
November 26th, 2015
Samantha Newman

Samantha Newman is the Regional Manager for Hiscox's Maidenhead office.

It might surprise you to learn that insurance for small businesses which sell products online can be quite hard to come by, especially if you want to work on a small scale.

In the summer of 2014 one of my colleagues pointed this out to me, and it got me thinking. I looked on Google, I contacted various insurers and brokers, and while there are products available for online retailers, nothing seemed purpose-built – or easy, for that matter.

I then made contact through my network with lots of small online retailing businesses and asked them what they wanted. I was taken aback by the feedback.

Some of the things they told me included:

  • Policies are often generic – meaning they were paying for irrelevant cover (e.g. cover for shop windows, cover for food in shop freezers)
  • It was really difficult to find cover for product liability outside the UK – and many of them ship abroad
  • Cover linked to one insured address – but many of them have stock in different locations e.g. third party storage facility
  • Security requirements very stringent, but stock often held in a garden shed or garage that cannot meet those requirements

I put together a proposal for insurance designed to meet the needs of these customers, and took this to Hiscox – and was delighted when they agreed to launch something. 

During 2015, we worked closely with one of our broker partners, PolicyBee, and this summer we launched a new offer together.

At Hiscox, we aim to get to know the sectors we insure really well, so that we can be certain we develop products that are designed to meet their needs. We have a range of products like this – from cover built for IT consultants to insurance for management consultants, recruiters or estate agents.

Now we have a product for online retailers – and I can’t wait to see how we develop that offer going forwards.

To find out more visit the online retailers insurance page.