Shoplifting is a common crime in Australia, which accounts for up to 40% of reported shop losses each year. Customer theft has dramatically increased every year and now accounts for over 50% of lost revenue. Shoplifting is the process of stealing goods from a store and usually involves hiding the item and leaving the store without paying for it. Unfortunately, it is often hard to identify a shoplifter as it is not only done by professionals but also the common person.
The best initial defence against shoplifting is to train your employees to watch out for potential shoplifters. Your employees should be encouraged to greet the customers as they enter the store and offer help where possible as good customer service often deter thieves. Shelves should be regularly tidied so it is easier to spot any item that is stolen. Special attention should be paid to customers who are nervous or trying to hide from security cameras.
It is also important that your employees look out for their personal safety. Your store’s shoplifting policy should be clear about the procedures that should be followed when checking a customer’s bag or catching a shoplifter.
Special attention should be paid to the dressing rooms to minimise the chances of theft as they are often blind spots for security cameras and allow shoplifters to conceal items before leaving. Depending on the activity within the store, a numbered tag system may be an effective solution if staff are trained to use it. We recommend talking to a retail security systems specialist to review the most appropriate security camera positions to deter shoplifters.
A proper retail inventory management system will help track and maintain your store’s inventory which helps identify missing merchandise. Your inventory management along with a well-organised store will deliver a strong message to potential thieves that they might be easily caught if they steal any item.
We strongly recommend retailers implement security tags that are tamper-resistant where possible to discourage forced removal. An increasingly popular trend is source tagging, which is the process of applying security labels at the point of manufacture instead of at the point of sale. This not only frees up time for retail workers to spend on customer engagement but also provides consistent security that meets compliance standards.
Your security system should include a commercial video surveillance system that allows remote security monitoring from anywhere. Surveillance plays an important role in internal and external theft prevention. A security camera will allow you to track suspicious customers and identify people who have committed any criminal activity.
There are various ways to prevent theft and shoplifting within retail stores. Investing in staff training is your first line of security but ultimately your retail security system can prevent theft. If you need to install or upgrade your existing security system, contact Ryalex Security for more information.