Taking stock for a successful holiday rush

Une vendeuse donne un sac à quelqu'un

Your business has been preparing for the Black Friday rush for several weeks now. This will be immediately followed by crowds of holiday shoppers. Have you considered taking out insurance for protecting your stock during this eagerly awaited period?

More people, more risk

Over the course of a year, the traffic through your store fluctuates. You need to respond to your clients’ needs according to the season, events and holidays.

You stock up on merchandise according to demand. But the more merchandise you have displayed or in inventory, the greater the risk of theft, breakage or loss.

When your merchandise goes snap, crackle, pop

Damaged goods can’t be sold. That doesn’t change, even if you discover who caused the damage. It’s better to avoid the damage in the first place. Be proactive, not reactive.

In storage

The risk of product breakage begins in storage. Before receiving the stock you ordered for Black Friday or the holiday season, tidy up your storage area. In other words, make room for the new stock! The more space you free up, the more items you can safely store.

If that’s not possible, find a safe storage location. A few tips:

  • Avoid stacking items so high that that they could become unbalanced and tip over.
  • Keep one sample of each product according to form and colour readily accessible.
  • Take care that merchandise isn’t stored directly on the ground.
  • Don’t store items close to sources of heat.
  • Verify that your electric devices work and where they are located.

In the store

The shelves are packed to the gills. The aisles between shelves are cluttered. Customers sometimes can’t avoid brushing the shelves when they squeeze their way through. These are the ingredients for a catastrophe. How could breakage be prevented in this scenario?

  • Don’t overload shelves. Restock them as items are sold.
  • Design a safe way to navigate between products.
  • Put up signs telling customers to not touch items.

Your merchandise does a vanishing act     

Theft may occur anywhere. If items disappear from the inventory, the culprit may be a staff member. If it happens where items are on public display, such as display cases, shelves or models, the suspect is more likely a customer. 

Thieves don’t always wear ski masks. There may be a wolf in sheep’s clothing among you! Perhaps a staff member is the culprit. To avoid this situation, it’s best to promptly do a background check of temporary staff you hire for the busy season. 

While you and your team are focused on serving customers, would-be thieves may be waiting for the right time to go into action. Devise strategies and keep your eyes open. A crowd of customers can easily become a distraction or a cover for committing theft.  

Our advice: 

  • Identify and count high-end merchandise.
  • Do random audits of your inventory. 
  • Install surveillance cameras and an alarm system connected to a central monitoring station. 
  • Ask your staff to be vigilant and keep an eye on customers.
  • Hire security guards to discourage theft. 
  • Inform customers of the security policies.
  • Encourage reporting of suspicious behaviour.

When misfortune strikes

Protect your merchandise from fire and water damage. It would be a shame to lose money at the exact moment when you’re counting on earning extra income.

Here’s a few things you can do to avoid disasters during the holiday season:

  • Check your electric system regularly.
  • Prohibit any items for smokers.
  • Install smoke detectors.
  • Install fire extinguishers.
  • Have water sprinklers installed in strategic locations.
  • Buy a generator in the event of a power outage.

The more coverage you have, the better you’re protected

Are you expecting a lot of merchandise to be delivered for the Black Friday mega-sale or holiday shopping? Your shelves are full and people are swarming into your store. It’s time to review your coverage to make sure your inventory is protected.

Re-evaluate your insurance

We insure commercial property, civil liability and loss of commercial income. If you run into problems, you need to have appropriate coverage that is in line with your new inventory.

Stock insurance will:

  • Replace goods (products, furniture, machinery) in the event of theft, fire, vandalism or water damage
  • Cover loss of commercial income, and even profits

How to prepare for more traffic:

  • Evaluate your insurance needs based on the actual quantities of stock.
  • Contact your insurance advisor about the different types of coverage available to you.

Choosing coverage

You have the choice of named perils or all perils coverage. Think about adding coverage for vandalism and water damage such as sewer back-ups or floods.

How can you cover your income and profits? Take out an endorsement that automatically increases the amount of your insurance by 25% during busy periods. Talk to your insurer about this; he or she will help you cover the risks to which your business is exposed.

At the end of the year, when it’s busiest, take precautions to protect your business. You can never be too cautious! By insuring your merchandise, you’re reducing your risk of loss. And you can count on our team for help with claims. Season’s greetings to all local retailers!