Why do businesses need insurance?
Because it helps cover the costs associated with property damage and liability claims. If a business doesn’t have insurance, it’s owner or owners may have to pay out-of-pocket for damages and legal claims against their organization.
Depending on what happened, the costs related to an incident could force a business to close down because it becomes insolvent.
Companies that offer business insurance become large and successful because millions of small businesses need insurance and the larger providers offer something unique that makes them attractive to different types of companies.
In this article, we’ll provide information about the 10 largest business insurance companies by market share in the United States and the things that make them unique and attractive to business owners. We also answer common questions people have about business insurance.
- Top 10 business insurance companies by market share in the U.S.
- What is business insurance?
- Why do I need business insurance?
- What does business insurance cover?
- What types of business insurance are available?
- How much does business insurance cost?
- How do I find cheap business insurance coverage?
Top 10 business insurance companies by market share in the U.S.
We researched the top ten business insurers by market share in the United States to determine what makes each one unique and attractive to small business owners.
Before we review the list of the top 10 business insurance companies in the US, we want to add a caveat that if you want to look for the best and the cheapest business insurance policy, you may want to start with a digital broker like CoverWallet. They work with several top business insurers on this list and are able to provide you with quotes from these companies so that you can compare them in one place conveniently.
- CoverWallet: Best for comparing several quotes online
- Chubb: Best for businesses that have industry-specific insurance needs
- Travelers: Best for companies that want coverage from an industry leader
- Liberty Mutual: Best for dynamic growing businesses
- Zurich: Best for businesses in certain industry segments
- AIG: Best for specialized coverages
- Berkshire Hathaway: Best for businesses that want choices when it comes to their coverage
- CNA: Best for small businesses in certain industries
- The Hartford: Best for businesses looking for a sound and ethical insurer
- Nationwide: Best for construction and contracting companies
- Tokio Marine: Best for companies looking for a financially sound insurance provider
CoverWallet: Best for comparing several quotes online
CoverWallet is a digital broker, specializing in business insurance. They work with several insurers in the top 10 list below. Once you fill out your application, which takes less than 10 minutes, they will present you with several quotes from the companies they partner with. That will make it easy and convenient for you to compare several quotes online.
CoverWallet is a subsidiary of Aon, one of the leading business insurance brokerages. That should make you feel comfortable to do business with. They also earn a good customer satisfaction review (A) from BBB.
Chubb: Best for businesses that have industry-specific insurance needs
Chubb, with 5.5% market share in business insurance industry, is not just the largest business insurer in the United States, it’s also the biggest publicly traded property and casualty insurance company in the world.
Chubb focuses on understanding the unique risks faced by businesses in different industries including technology, healthcare and real estate. That means you can choose an insurance package from Chubb (the company has more than 30 of them) to protect against the risks of any small business in virtually any industry.
Because the experts at Chubb have such a deep understanding of the risks faced by different types of businesses, they have programs — and are able to offer advice — on how to reduce risks in the workplace. Not only is lowering risk levels the right thing to do, it can help reduce overall business insurance costs, as well.
Bottom line: If your business is in an industry that has unique risks, it’s likely the Chubb will be able to protect against them.
Travelers: Best for companies that want coverage from an industry leader
Travelers may be the number two business insurer on our list with 5.3% market share, but it’s an industry powerhouse.
The company has been in continuous operation for more than 165 years and is the only property casualty company in the Dow Jones Industrial Average. Travelers is known for leveraging the extensive experience of its more than 30,000 employees to help businesses reduce risk, which typically results in lower premium costs.
Travelers is known for its:
- Flexible solutions. It has insurance packages tailored to different industries that can be customized for individual businesses.
- Responsive and reliable service. An experienced professional is always available to answer your questions about business coverage or to help you with a claim.
- Innovation. Even though Travelers has been around for a long time, it’s known as a leading innovator in the insurance industry.
Bottom line: Travelers offers quality insurance protection for businesses in many industries. You owe it to yourself to see if this industry leader could be the right provider for your business.
Liberty Mutual: Best for dynamic growing businesses
Small businesses change over time, and because of that, their insurance needs evolve. Liberty Mutual is uniquely able to serve their changing business protection requirements.
Liberty Mutual, with 4.8% market share, offers one of the most comprehensive ranges of business coverages of any insurer. They are able to customize policies to meet the needs of almost any type of organization. In addition to this, their experts are always looking ahead to identify new business risks and find efficient ways to cover them.
Also, Liberty Mutual is known for its workplace safety programs. By implementing them, you may be able to save on your business insurance premium costs over time.
Bottom line: Liberty Mutual is a Fortune 100 company and one of the largest insurance firms in the United States and across the globe. You can feel confident knowing that Liberty Mutual will have the funds to cover any claim you make. They could be the right insurer for your business now and as it changes and grows in the years ahead.
Zurich: Best for businesses in certain industry segments
Zurich is a leading property-casualty insurance provider serving businesses of all sizes across the globe, including small and mid-sized ones in the United States. The company has been in business for almost 150 years, including 100 in the U.S. Like most leading insurers, Zurich is committed to reducing business risk and providing top level customer service.
Zurich makes it easy to shop for coverage, offering programs for different business segments.
- Retail program for businesses primarily engaged in the retail trade and selling of products
- Wholesale program for operations that specialize in the wholesale trade of goods
- Service program for businesses primarily involved in service trades
- Office program that covers office buildings and personal property contained in them
- Manufacturing program for companies engaged in the manufacturing of electrical equipment and metal goods
- Institutional program developed for businesses engaged in religion, education, social services and cultural services
- Builders risk program offers specialized coverage for residential and commercial builders.
- Trade contractors insurance program developed for a range of both commercial and residential trade contractors.
Bottom line: If your operation is in any of these industry segments, it could be worth checking out Zurich for your business insurance needs.
AIG: Best for specialized coverages
If your company has specialized insurance needs, AIG could be the ideal business insurer for you. Some of the coverages they offer include:
- Accident and health: These insurance products can be customized to meet the needs of almost any small business.
- Aerospace: AIG is one of the few firms that has a team of aviation professionals to help develop coverage for businesses in the aerospace industry.
- Casualty: AIG’s casualty coverage goes above and beyond by helping companies reduce risk.
- Cyber: The company’s cyber solutions help businesses manage data-related risks, prevent losses and resolve breaches when they happen.
- Directors and officers: Helps protect company directors and officers agains claims by competitors, shareholders, regulators and government agencies.
- Energy: Covers businesses in the sector against risks like unexpected interruptions, changing regulations and market shifts.
- Environmental: Helps protect businesses against exposures related to the environment and causing damage to it.
- Financial institutions: AIG offers coverage against the risks faced by financial companies of all sizes.
- Fronting and captive services: The insurer has more than 50 years experience offering these unique solutions.
- Kidnap and ransom: AIG offers coverage for risks like business related kidnappings, extortion, assault and more.
- Management liability: AIG provides solutions that can help protect companies from a wide array of board-level risks.
- Marine: Helps cover the risks faced by oceangoing and inland marine service businesses.
- Mergers and acquisitions: Covers the risks businesses face when going through these unique types of deals.
- Multinational: Helps protect companies doing business in two or more countries.
- Political risk: Helps mitigate perils faced by businesses engaged in or financing cross-border trade.
- Professional liability: Protects businesses and the people who work for them against legal action related to the services they provide.
- Property: AIG offers flexible solutions to protect company assets from things like physical damage, business interruptions and terrorist attacks.
- Surety: AIG supplies bonds to organizations that help mitigate threats like project delays and cost overruns.
- Surplus lines: AIG is the leading provider of coverage for large, unique and emerging risks.
- Trade credit: Helps protect against the risks of customer default against credit terms.
- Warranty: Helps protect your customers when they purchase something from you and it doesn’t work as intended or promised.
Bottom line: If you have specialized business insurance requirements, you owe it to yourself to find out if AIG could supply you with the coverage you need.
Berkshire Hathaway: Best for businesses that want choices when it comes to their coverage
Berkshire Hathaway, a holding company headed by well-known investor Warren Buffett, offers business insurance through four different subsidiaries. No matter which you select, you can rest assured knowing your working with a firm that has millions of satisfied customers and that’s been insuring people and businesses for more than 75 years.
Guard distinguishes itself from other Berkshire Hathaway business insurance providers because it offers coverage for some unique industries including artisan contractors, auto services, hotels and motels and more. It offers many value-added services including up-front loss control measures to identify and correct workplace hazards. It’s also known for its highly responsive claims process.
Guard also has a competitive, multi-tier pricing structure because it’s able to access coverage through a range of affiliated carriers. It also offers discounts for things like maintaining a drug-free workplace and implementing a formal safety program.
Berkshire Hathaway Homestate Companies (BHHC)
BHHC is made up of six insurance carriers that are part of the Berkshire Hathaway group of insurance companies. It offers coverage for some of the top risks faced by small businesses including commercial property, commercial auto and workers compensation coverage. It has a superior rating from A.M. Best, an insurance company rating service.
biBERK is Berkshire Hathaway’s low-cost business insurance provider. Despite saving money on your coverage, you can rest assured knowing you’re still getting quality protection for your business. biBERK is able to lower insurance costs by almost 20 percent because it insures small businesses directly, without the added costs of having to work through a middleman or insurance broker.
If you prefer a single source for all your business insurance coverage, THREE could be the solution for you. It protects all aspects of a business, including people, property and operations, in a single comprehensive business insurance policy. THREE makes protecting a business easy.
Bottom line: No matter which Berkshire Hathaway provider you choose, it’s likely you’ll have a good experience.
CNA: Best for small businesses in certain industries
CNA offers business insurance for companies in many industries including construction, finance, healthcare, legal, life sciences, manufacturing, professional services, real estate and technology. The company offers a complete array of coverages including professional liability, business auto, cyber liability, workers’ compensation, management liability, umbrella and more.
The firm, which has been in business for more than 50 years, is known for its attentive service and risk management solutions that help prevent accidents in the workplace.
Bottom Line: CNA is a quality business insurance provider that could be the perfect choice for small businesses in some industry segments.
The Hartford: Best for businesses looking for a sound and ethical insurer
The Hartford is one of the oldest companies of any kind in the United States. It’s been offering insurance solutions for more than 200 years and has helped one million plus businesses with their insurance needs. The company takes pride in the fact that the Ethisphere Institute named The Hartford a World’s Most Ethical Company twelve times. The Hartford’s longevity and focus on ethical business practices makes it a company that you can feel good about doing business with.
The Hartford’s dedicated and highly experienced small business team is available to help company owners explore their business insurance options.
Bottom Line: If you decide to purchase insurance from The Hartford, you can rest assured knowing you’re entrusting your business to a strong, stable, knowledgeable and ethical provider.
Nationwide: Our top choice for construction and contracting companies
Nationwide is one of the largest insurance companies in the United States. It offers business insurance for small and large companies in many industries, but is best known for its packaged options designed for construction and contracting businesses, which can be challenging to insure. These packaged solutions make it easy to bundle different types of business insurance, including professional liability, business vehicle, contractor equipment insurance, workers’ compensation coverage and more.
How committed is Nationwide to businesses in the construction and contracting industry? It has developed a suite of business resources that help companies in these risky industries run their operations more safely and effectively. The suite, which is made available for free to Nationwide customers, includes fleet safety information, courses on preventing slips and falls and tips on handling payroll and taxes.
Nationwide has been around since 1926. It has a solid reputation and is known for its high level of customer satisfaction.
Bottom line: If you own a construction or contracting business, you should consider Nationwide as your business insurance provider.
Tokio Marine: Best for companies looking for a financially sound insurance provider
Tokio Marine has been conducting business in the United States for a one hundred years. It has the highest financial strength rating from A.M. Best, an insurance rating agency.
Tokio Marine offers insurance through agents and other intermediaries to companies in the following industries:
- Electronics, communications and technology
- Auto and auto parts manufacturing
- Pharmaceutical and life sciences
- Chemical manufacturing
- Food and beverage
- Real estate companies and office parks
- Industrial and manufacturing companies
- Wholesale and retail businesses.
Tokio Marine offers 24 / 7 claims reporting and an app that makes doing business with the company simple.
Bottom line: Even though Tokio Marine is the last insurer on our list, it’s still a leading insurance provider for small businesses across the U.S.
What is business insurance?
Business insurance, also known as commercial insurance, helps protect business owners from unexpected losses.
There are many types of business insurance options to help cover your operation for property damage, legal liability and employee-related risks.
Why do I need business insurance?
In most states, your business needs certain coverages in order to operate, such as workers’ compensation insurance. Workers’ comp provides your employees with benefits to help them recover from a work-related injury or illness.
Liability insurance is another important type of coverage because it helps pay legal fees and other costs related to lawsuits filed against your business. If you don’t have adequate coverage to protect your business, you’ll have to pay these costs out of pocket, along with ones related to business property damage, theft and other losses related to your business. These expenses are often so significant they put smaller operations out of business.
An insurance agent or representative at a company specializing in business insurance can advise you on the coverages you need.
What does business insurance cover?
Depending on the specific type of business insurance policy, it covers different liabilities and losses. A common policy for most small business owners is Business Owners Policy (BOP). A BOP policy will help protect your business property, income and financial assets. A BOP typically includes three types of coverage:
- Business property coverage protects the buildings your business operates out of, whether you own or rent them and the equipment used to run your company. This includes your:
- Physical location
- And more.
- General liability insurance covers legal claims against your business related to:
- Bodily injury
- Property damage
- Reputational harm, such as libel and slander.
- Business income insurance, often referred to as business interruption coverage, helps replace lost income if you can’t operate your business because of property damage that’s covered by your business policy. This includes damage from fire, wind, weather events or burglaries.
Depending on the specific needs of your business, you can work with your insurance agent or insurance company rep to figure out what other coverages you may need.
What types of business insurance are available?
Some common specialized business coverages include:
- Workers compensation insurance which provides your employees with benefits that help them recover from work-related injury and illness
- Business auto insurance or commercial auto insurance which helps protect you and your employees when driving for business reasons
- General liability insurance that covers legal claims against your business related to bodily injury, property damage, and reputational harm.
- Data breach insurance if customer, employee or other business related information or data is lost, stolen or compromised
- Professional liability insurance, which is often referred to as errors and omissions coverage, protects you and the people who work for you if sued for making a mistake while providing professional services.
A business insurance expert can advise you on the coverages you need.
How much does business insurance cost?
Business insurance cost varies depending on several factors: the type of business insurance policy you get; the size of your business; the coverage amount; the deductibles; your business location; the insurer where you buy the policy from; etc.
However, the good news is that business insurance isn’t usually expensive. On average, small businesses pay $2,828 a year or $236 a month for business insurance.
Where you buy your business insurance policy also determines how much it costs, be sure to shop around with several companies or with a digital broker like CoverWallet to compare several quotes to get the cheapest one.
How do I find cheap business insurance coverage?
While business coverage is something you don’t want to skimp on, here are some tips to help you find the insurance you need at a fair price:
- Shop around for the best value. Get quotes from a few companies.
- Don’t stop shopping around. Make sure you get new quotes before you renew your policy.
- Take advantage of discounts. If they’re not offered to you when getting a quote, ask about them, whether you’re buying online or through an agent.
- Bundle. If you buy multiple policies from the same company, you usually get a discount of 10% or so. Business owners should consider bundling general liability policies with commercial property, known as a business owners policy. This combination is less expensive than if you were to buy the policies separately.
- Raise your deductible. Raising your deductible can save you some money in montly costs. Just make sure you can meet the deductible if you need it.
- Manage risks: Make sure you provide a safe working environment—no wet floors, no cords lying around, safe lighting in parking lots. This will go a long way to preventing claims in the first place.
Taking these steps will help ensure you’re not paying too much for your business insurance.