New survey data shows small businesses are twice as likely to be fully covered for losses if they buy insurance through a broker rather than buying direct.

About 23% of Vero SME Insurance Index respondents who use brokers say 100% of their last claim was fully covered. Some 13% say only up to half the claim was covered.

For those purchasing direct, 10% say the claim was fully met, while 26% were covered for up to half their loss.

Vero Head of Commercial Intermediaries Anthony Pagano says claims experience can make or break the relationship between SMEs and brokers.

“Brokers know how important claims are, with many believing the ability to manage the process is one of the main benefits they offer their clients,” he said.

“This data shows when SMEs receive expert guidance on their insurance, they are far more likely to be adequately covered.”

The survey also asked business owners about overall claims experience, with 62% who use a broker saying they are very satisfied, compared with 57% of direct buyers.

Vero has released a risk registry tool for brokers, which shows the most common risks for specific occupations and industries.

Mr Pagano says the tool uses data from more than 40,000 claims, allowing brokers to generate highly relevant information for clients, further demonstrating how expert advice can help SMEs buy the right insurance for their needs.