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What is E-Commerce Insurance?

E-commerce businesses may not have the same risk exposure as traditional businesses that have brick-and-mortar locations, but that doesn’t mean online businesses are completely risk-free. Data breaches, product liability risks, mistaken advice and losses of income are just some of the risks that online businesses in Massachusetts may face depending on how they operate. E-commerce insurance helps these businesses protect themselves from many covered risks that they’re exposed to.

E-commerce insurance is a specialized form of commercial insurance that’s designed to meet the unique needs of online businesses. In order to provide robust protection against an array of risks, policies are usually underwritten as package policies that combine several coverages together. Most policies let businesses select the combination of coverages that they want.

What Businesses in Massachusetts Need E-Commerce Business Insurance?

The vast majority of Massachusetts businesses that offer goods or services online should consider the protections that e-commerce business insurance offers. This generally includes online stores, businesses that sell through third-party platforms and service-based online businesses. 

Moreover, both small and large online businesses may need an insurance policy. While large businesses tend to have greater risk exposure than small ones, even small businesses can have property damaged or be named in a liability lawsuit.

In some cases, businesses’ operations might extend beyond selling only online. For example, many stores sell both online and in brick-and-mortar locations. E-commerce business insurance may not meet all of the insurance needs that such multi-faceted businesses have, but these businesses generally should still include e-commerce coverage within their broader commercial insurance policies.

E-Commerce Insurance Massachusetts

What Coverages Does E-Commerce Business Insurance Provide?

While the exact coverages that any one e-commerce business policy offers can vary, most policies make an array of coverages available to businesses that purchase the policies. Many of these coverages offer property or liability protections, but some shield businesses from risk in other ways.
Some of the more commonly needed property coverages include:

     • Commercial Building Coverage, which may cover a business’ physical facility
     • Commercial Contents Coverage, which may cover products, supplies and equipment kept at a facility
     • Ocean Cargo Coverage, which may cover products that are shipped between continents
     • Inland Marine Coverage, which may cover products that are shipped within continents
     • Intellectual Property Coverage, which may cover intangible property (e.g. software, data, etc.)

Some of the more commonly needed liability coverages are:

     • General Liability Coverage, which might cover common accidents, false advertising claims and defamation claims
     • Product Liability Coverage, which might cover property damage and injuries caused by sold products
     • Errors and Omissions Coverage, which might cover mistakes made in advice that’s given to customers
     • Cyber Liability Coverage, which might cover data breaches, DDOS attacks and website hacks
     • Employment Practices Liability Coverage, which might cover discrimination claims filed by employees
     • Directors and Officers Coverage, which might cover a business’ leaders against certain lawsuits and claims

Business interruption coverage, hired and non-owned auto coverage, and commercial crime coverage are a few of the other protections that e-commerce businesses may want. An insurance agent who specializes in this type of commercial policy can help businesses determine which protections make the most sense for them.

How Much Do E-Commerce Policies Cost?

E-commerce policies’ premiums are based on many different factors and frequently vary. Broadly speaking, premiums tend to be affordable -- and almost certainly more affordable than what recovering from a catastrophic incident or lawsuit could cost.

Businesses can get a more precise understanding of how much insurance will cost them by talking with an independent insurance agent. Independent agents are able to request policy quotes from several insurance companies, and help businesses compare each policy’s coverages and rates.

E-Commerce Insurance Massachusetts

How Can Businesses in Massachusetts Get E-Commerce Insurance?

For help insuring an e-commerce business that has operations in Massachusetts, contact the independent insurance agents of John P. Russell Insurance. Our team has worked with many online businesses in the state, and we’re ready to assist your business with its e-commerce insurance needs

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