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March cold snap proves costly for small businesses

The unexpected cold snap in March cost UK-based small businesses around £174 million in lost revenue, a new study has shown.

According to the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), 55 per cent of the nation's less established enterprises were adversely affected by the snow and ice throughout the month.

March 2013 was said to be the coldest for 100 years and the bad weather caused all manner of disruptions.

Indeed, 30 per cent of organisations reported lower customer demand as a direct result of the cold conditions, while one in four businesses were forced to close at some point, with the average downtown being 2.2 days.

Inevitably, companies were also impacted by the difficult road conditions and 27 per cent confirmed that a member of staff had been unable to come into work on at least one occasion.

"While a few businesses have managed to take advantage of the weather many have found it difficult to manage. Not only have they had to cope with a lack of demand for products, but many have had to close," commented FSB national policy chairman Mike Cherry.

In addition to the problems caused by snow and ice, one in five businesses also stated that their firm has been badly affected by the flooding in 2012.

Last year was one of the wettest on record and the storms caused huge amounts of damage up and down the UK.

Clearly, the UK's weather is becoming even more unpredictable and this is why it has become critically important for companies - especially smaller ones - to take out adequate insurance to cover them against any storm or flooding damage.

Business disruption policies are particularly useful, as they will foot the bill for any temporary premises that you may have been forced to use while your own property was being fixed.

The Association of British Insurers recently revealed that more than 1,300 customers who suffered flood damage were helped by insurance providers every single day in 2012.ADNFCR-3408-ID-801572180-ADNFCR

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