Whether you run a local shop, department store, or an entire shopping centre, shoplifting should be one of your biggest retail security worries. Why’s that? Because people nicking stuff from your place accounts for a whopping 70% of all retail crime.
The most important part of a retail loss prevention plan is understanding how to prevent shoplifting. It costs our important retail sector $2 billion a year – Prevent shoplifting and you avoid it costing you where it hurts the most (the till). Luckily, there are things both you AND your staff can do to keep your retail outlet safe and sound – and there are also ways to secure your establishment so that it’s a shoplifter’s worst nightmare but still enticing to genuine customers.
Let’s get straight into it …
What can YOU do to prevent shoplifting?
1. Light it up
If your store is dark, shoplifters will love not being in the spotlight – and any CCTV security footage may be too poor to be useful.
2. Scare them off
It has been shown that simply putting up some signs can be enough to put would-be shoplifters off. One sign could warn that bags will be checked, and another might say police will be called no matter what the shoplifting excuse or the value of the loot is.
3. Lock it up
Among the most commonly stolen items are those that are easily hidden, not fixed down, and valuable – so review your stock items and if they tick these boxes consider locking them up in a cabinet or displaying them behind the cash register.
What can YOUR STAFF do to prevent shoplifting?
1. Have enough on duty
Firstly, if your shop is understaffed, shoplifters are more likely to be able to steal without detection while staff are busy and distracted.
Staff should try to greet each and every visitor – just to let them know you’ve noticed them.
3. Be vigilant
Once in the store, potential customers should be well looked after. The honest ones will love the attention, and the dishonest ones will feel watched like a hawk.
How can you secure your retail outlet?
Just like a carpenter needs a good hammer and a hairdresser needs great scissors, your shop needs the best possible retail security systems in place to ward off the shoplifter’s curse.
Before we get into putting all the right security gear into action, it’s important to embrace that all-important human element. That’s because while technology is great, there’s nothing like a trained set of human eyes on a business. Larger stores should consider a commercial security guard, not only a visual deterrent to shoplifters but also trained to spot them.
The next best thing after a set of hawkish human eyes is a state of the art CCTV security camera system. The most modern systems are individually tailored so they’re perfect for your shop – they pan, tilt and zoom, they work at night, and they hook into your other alarm, monitoring and access control systems.
Electronic surveillance tags use sensors that trip alarms or damage the goods when items off the shelf are removed without them being paid for. They also work as a great deterrent, with the mere sight of a tag enough to put off the more casual of shoplifters.
4. Access control
It’s an unfortunate stat, but more than 40% of all retail theft is carried out by the hands of people on the payroll. A way to fix that is by having a modern access control system in place. This not only keeps out the bad guys, but lets you limit access to certain parts of your establishment, and track which staff members may be up to no good.
Taking action on retail security
Shoplifters come in many shapes and sizes. By being a smart manager with vigilant staff and the right retail security systems in place, you’ll have the best possible net to deter and if possible catch the bad guys red-handed. Citiguard provides security services in Sydney not only for domestic and government purposes but also the business and retail sector – so get in touch to start scaring off shoplifters today!