Secure Your Business Online & Off

The world is changing and with it there also come changes in security threats and how businesses are handling them both online and off. It is important to be mindful of securing both digital and physical business assets to prevent a cyber-attack or theft. Here are a few tips to help secure your business!

Create Strong Passwords

Having password-protected devices and requiring employees to create strong passwords could keep your digital information safer. Strong passwords typically include a mix of letters, numbers and special characters. Additionally, ensuring no password is the same across platforms/accounts and enabling two-factor authentication can help increase your business’s level of online protection.

Use Antivirus/Anti-malware Software

The Small Business Administration reports cyber-attacks are a growing threat for small businesses and the cost of cybercrimes reached $2.7 billion in 2018 alone. Installing antivirus and anti-malware software could help protect your devices in case of phishing attempts or other digital threats. According to the SBA, employees and emails are a leading cause of data breaches, so consider scheduling annual training or sending periodic emails to employees about safe digital practices. 

Backup Data 

Another way to prepare for a data breach or online attack is to back up your business data. Regularly backing up data on an internal network or a cloud-based service is recommended. Critical data could include documents, spreadsheets, databases, files, personal information and more. Regularly backing up data could help you recover quicker if the business does have a breach that corrupts the live data. 

Prepare for Emergencies

Create a plan for different seasonal scenarios, like the possibility of a tornado, fire, snowstorm, flood, power outage, etc. to help keep your business prepared and assets secured. Post the emergency plans and evacuation routes in a visible location inside the business so that employees and customers can see the plans and safely exit or take shelter in the event of an emergency. 

Protect from Liabilities 

Accidents can happen, and one way to prepare your business for accidents is to add liability or umbrella insurance coverage. These coverage options provide protection for your business from potential lawsuits that could arise from accidents with customers or employees. You should also proactively reduce any potential accident risks on the business premises, including removing any tripping or slipping hazards, fixing entry stairs and stair railings, etc. 

Install Security Systems

Another way to help secure a business is to set up security systems. Installing security cameras could help reduce theft and give you the opportunity to monitor inventory. Additionally, installing a burglar alarm and fire alarm could help keep employees and customers safe from potential dangers. Finally, consider using multiple locking mechanisms, including deadbolts for exterior doors. 

Planning for the unexpected could save you time and money. We are here to be your partner in securing your business. Contact your OKFB agent to review your Commercial Insurance policy to ensure it is up-to-date to protect your business.

Make the Most of a Business Slump

With most businesses, there are busy seasons and slow seasons. If your business is seasonal and usually experiences a slower season, don’t let the slump get you down! You can take advantage of the time to prepare and better your business for what is ahead. Check out these ideas for maximizing the slow season: 

Put Time Towards Your Biggest Investment – Your Employees

During a slow down is the perfect time to refresh your employees on training. This could mean adding a new requirement that will boost customer experience or even offering more advanced training for your veteran employees. Putting time towards your employees can help boost productivity, job satisfaction, and morale. 

Interact with Customers/Use Feedback

Your business likely responded to feedback, both positive and negative, in real time, but now with this extra time you can focus on using that feedback to make any necessary improvements. You can also take any positive feedback you received and post it to your social media or website. Lastly, many customers appreciate the personal touch they get from small businesses they work with – now could be a good time to reach out to customers to check in, provide updates, etc.  

Promote Your Business/Sales

This is a good time to assess your marketing strategies from the past year and to see what is working and what isn’t. You can also refresh your website and social media channels. Social media marketing can take a lot of effort, so you could use this time to build up a large bank of content to use for the rest of the year. It may also make sense for you to promote an off-season sale, to help move merchandise during the slump.   

Prepare for the Upcoming Busy Season

Planning ahead now can help ease burdens and stress when things become hectic again in the future. Preparations can look different for each business, but consider checking your inventory and stocking up, planning for future sales and promotions, reviewing your budget and employees’ schedules, etc. This is also a good time to prepare for any hiring you will need to do to be fully staffed during the busy season.

At the end of the day, all of these efforts tie back to protecting your business for the future. OKFB can be your partner in protection, check out our commercial policies and our newest addition of the businessowners policy, specifically crafted for certain types of small businesses.

Commercial Insurance 101

Owning a business takes dedication and vision, and preparation for the long-term is necessary. No matter the size of your operation, part of preparing for the unexpected means securing protection for your employees and assets with commercial insurance. The right policy could save you money when accidents cause damage to equipment or property. If you’re new to owning a business, or just need a refresher on the basics, here are some coverage options to keep in mind when considering a commercial policy: 

Commercial Property

The property you choose for your business operations is crucial to its overall success. So is the coverage you select to help protect the property and everything inside of it. Things like building structures, inventory, equipment and leased property can be protected under commercial property insurance. This is a great place to start when getting a policy. 

Commercial Auto

From hauling parts to delivering flowers, your company vehicles work as hard as you do. If you have company vehicles, you’ll want to secure commercial auto coverage for them. Features such as auto liability and uninsured motorist will not only protect your vehicle, but will also provide extra coverage for you, your passengers or other drivers of the automobile. 

Commercial Liability

We know small businesses don’t always feel so small. Let us help take one worry off of your mind with a commercial liability policy. Liability claims can be devastating to a small business, so this insurance option can help protect your business from expensive liability lawsuits. Commercial liability coverage ensures that you and your assets are covered in case of an injury or property damage to others that occurs as a result of your operations. 

Commercial Umbrella

Umbrella policies are named for the overarching protection they provide on top of general liability coverage. A commercial umbrella policy can provide additional coverage to your business that may not come with your general liability policy. This will help make sure your business is still covered in a situation where your general liability policy doesn’t fully cover the cost of a lawsuit. 

When it comes to deciding what coverage fits your unique business needs, your agent can help you choose the right policy. Contact an OKFB agent today for more information about how we can help keep your business protected from the unexpected with our Commercial Insurance coverage. 

Top Questions Answered by Insurance Agents

When it comes to shopping for Home, Auto, Life and Commercial Insurance, it can be hard to know where to start. No matter how big or small your questions may be, our agents are here to help! Below are five common questions Oklahomans have when trying to decide what insurance is best for them.

Q: When do I need to update my insurance coverage?

A: Major life events, such as moving out on your own, purchasing a car, getting married or having a baby are good prompts to talk with your agent to discuss your coverage. We recommend setting an annual review with your agent to talk through what changes you’ve experienced in the last year and what you anticipate in the next.

Q: How much life insurance do I need?

A: Everyone’s needs vary when it comes to Life Insurance. There are factors you need to consider, such as the ages of your spouse and/or children, future expenses like mortgage or college and what type of policy you can afford. To get an idea of what might be a good fit for you, check out this Life Insurance calculator.

Q: Does my car insurance cover other drivers?

A: Typically, Auto Insurance follows the vehicle, not the driver. It’s important to consider what your unique coverage entails; for example, if your friend gets into a wreck while driving your car and you’re not insured for collision coverage, they are no more covered than you would have been as the driver. Since policy terms vary, it’s always best to contact your insurance agent before loaning out your car.

Q: What is umbrella insurance?

A: Personal umbrella insurance is a type of insurance designed for when you need extra liability coverage above another insurance policy. It helps supplement items not covered by other policies (such as Home or Commercial Insurance) and could kick in, for example, if you were to be held liable for an amount greater than what one of your other insurance policies covers. Talk to your agent to discuss how much coverage will be right for you, your home or your business.

Q: What type of insurance coverage is a “must” for small business owners?

A: Every business is unique, and insurance agents are trained in knowing what insurance products are most suited to your business, your budget and your goals. Many business owners like to start the conversation with Commercial General Liability Insurance to protect their assets in case of injury or property damage. Talk with your agent to discuss how much coverage is right for you!

You can learn more about the right coverage for your unique needs by contacting an OKFB agent near you.