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The Hartford Small Business Insurance Review 2021

Choosing the correct small business insurance can be one of the most important decisions you’ll make as a small business owner. Finding the right policies can mean the difference between not having enough coverage and keeping your assets protected in the case of a lawsuit. Below we’ll take a look at the Hartford in terms of the small business insurance types the company offers, the reputation of the company and what it’s like to get a quote online from the company. Read on for our the Hartford Small Business Insurance Review.

Pros

  • The Hartford has a steady history in the market with a strong A+ financial strength rating through A.M. Best. 
  • You can find a wide variety of small business insurance types through the Hartford, like property insurance, liability insurance or workers’ compensation.
  • The Hartford has been identified as the World’s Most Ethical Company 11 times by The Ethisphere Institute.    
  • The digital quote experience was smooth for looking at a hypothetical sole proprietor business consultant operating out of the home with a $35,000 annual revenue. We looked at general liability insurance for a small business. 

>>MORE: General Liability Insurance: Definition and Coverage

Cons

  • The Hartford is a generalist company, covering all types of small businesses. That could be a con if you prefer a type of small business insurance from a company that only works with your industry. 
  • The consumer reviews through the J.D. Power 2019 U.S. Small Commercial Insurance Study are tepid. The company gets the lowest two rating across all metrics. 
  • In 2018, the Hartford had five workers’ compensation complaints and one liability complaint through the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. It had an overall 1.71 complaint index for all insurance types.     

The Hartford Small Business Insurance Review: Small Business Insurance Products Offered

Score: 85/100

The Hartford offers five main types of small business insurance:

  • Business property insurance: This covers your physical location that you own or lease as part of your small business. It also covers equipment, tools and inventory.
  • General liability insurance: This type of insurance covers you if someone files a claim to recoup financial loss from property damage, bodily injury, personal injury claims or advertising injury claims.
  • Business income insurance: This covers lost income when you cannot generate revenue after events like fire or theft.
  • Workers’ compensation insurance: If you employ people, this helps pay employees in the case of a work-related injury or illness. Most states require that you carry this type of insurance if you have employees.  
  • Commercial auto insurance: If you or your employees drive as part of the business, this covers you in the case of auto accidents that happened while driving for work.

To reiterate, the site does not specifically state that the Hartford specializes in certain industries for overall business insurance. The company offers general small business insurance no matter the industry. This is one of the key takeaways of the Hartford Small Business Insurance Review.

>>MORE: How Much does General Liability Insurance Cost?

Financial Strength Rating for the Hartford Small Business Insurance Review

Score: 90/100

If you search The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc. through A.M Best, there are no listings that pop up. However, at the bottom of the Hartford’s site, it states that the insurance is written by Sentinel Insurance Company, Ltd. When you search by that name, a listing with thehartford.com as the web address pops up.

Sentinel Insurance Company has an A+ (Superior) financial strength rating with A.M. Best. The outlook of the company is listed as stable. The initial rating date also goes all the way back to 1958.    

>>MORE: Best General Liability Insurance for Small Businesses

Customer Satisfaction Rating for the Hartford Small Business Insurance Review

Score: 50/100

According to the J.D. Power 2020 U.S. Small Commercial Insurance Study, the Hartford ranks 10th, the last in the top 10 small business insurance companies covered by the study. It asks customers of each company how they would rate that company across key metrics. They had a very similar position in the 2019 study, ranking the second last position.

The study rates companies on a scale from two to five. Five is “among the best,” four is “better than most,” three is “above average” and two is simply labeled “the rest.”  

The Hartford has a two across all metrics. The factors in the study looked at the following attributes: overall satisfaction, interaction (through website, call center, or direct agent), policy offerings, pricing, billing and payment, and claims.

Considering the Hartford has a two across such a diverse field of metrics, you’ll want to check how this company compares with others before you go with this one.

>>MORE: What is Professional Liability Insurance? And Its Cost?

Consumer Complaints Rating for the Hartford Small Business Insurance Review

Score: 60/100

To get a record of consumer complaints for our the Hartford Small Business Insurance Review, we looked at ratings from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. In 2018, the Hartford (30104 company code) had:

  • Five complaints for workers’ compensation 
  • One compliant for liability 

That vast majority of complaints were for auto insurance, at about 99 percent. The fewer small business insurance complaints could be due to small business insurance not being as common to carry as auto insurance, so that’s something to remember as you’re assessing the Hartford for insurance. 

However, the company does have a complaint index of 1.71 for 2018 for all insurance types. That’s higher than the base 1.00 of the National Complaint Index, meaning the Hartford has more complaints than expected for the market. 

When you look at business insurance types, the complaint index breaks down as follows:

  • Commercial liability: 4.84
  • Commercial auto: 0.00
  • Commercial property: 0.00
  • Workers’ compensation: 1.28
  • Medical professional liability: 0.00 

It’s worth noting that commercial liability is quite high, with over four times the expected amount of complaints for the market.    

>>MORE: Best Professional Liability Insurance Companies for Small Business

Digital Experience Rating for the Hartford Small Business Insurance Review 

Score: 90/100

We also got a quote online from this company as part of our the Hartford Small Business Insurance Review. 

Getting an online quote from the Hartford looks pretty easy at first. There’s a large green button you can select on the small business insurance page labeled “quote today.”  

The first page asked for basic information about your business, like the year it started and the zip code it’s located in. We entered a business and management consultant small business in Wisconsin that’s been around for three years with no employees. You can see the first page below: 

The next page allows you to select what type of insurance you want:

To start off, we just selected general liability insurance. Then it asks some basic questions about your business operations:

We selected no for all of them. Next, you need to put in detailed information about your business contact information:

Then, there are some more questions, like whether you rent or own your business location:

Then it asks what level of coverage you want for aggregate and occurrence limits. We kept it at the level detailed in the screenshot:

After you answer all the questions, you get this screen that outlines your monthly payment:

We didn’t do any add-ons, like data breach, and hit continue. The process finishes with this detailed quote page:

Overall, for the type of insurance and business we looked at, the quote process went smoothly. There are quite a few questions to answer about your business and there are quite a few screens to advance through. However, that is normal for getting quotes online for business insurance.  

Plus, the final quote page does a nice job of outlining your liability coverage by each occurrence and aggregate amounts. It’s also easy to see how much you’ll pay monthly and annually for this type of insurance. Overall, it’s a good digital experience.     

Final Thoughts

  • The Hartford offers five main types of business insurance: business property, general liability, business income, workers’ compensation, and commercial auto.
  • To find the financial strength of the Hartford, you need to search for the insurance writer, Sentinel Insurance Company, Ltd. The company has an A+ (Superior) financial strength rating through A.M. Best.
  • Consumer surveys through the J.D. Power 2019 U.S. Small Commercial Insurance Study put the company on the low end of the ratings for factors like pricing, policy offerings, and payments. 
  • Through the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, there were five complaints about workers’ compensation insurance and one about liability in 2018. Overall, the company had a 1.71 complaint index, which is a bit higher than expected for the market. 
  • The digital experience we had while getting a quote for our the Hartford Small Business Insurance Review was smooth and intuitive. You have to answer several pages of detailed questions about your business, but that’s normal for getting small business insurance quotes online.   
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