Shop Lifting

If you own a store of any size, odds are that you’ll need to deal with shoplifters. Even the smallest stores in the most remote places can be affected by the theft. Shoplifting can harm your store’s bottom line – after all, you’re losing out on merchandise that you paid for. Dealing with shoplifters isn’t an impossible task.

In fact, there are ten things that you can do to make it practically impossible for anyone to steal from your store.

1) Place mirrors in the corners of your store.

A few well-placed mirrors make it easy to see what everyone in the store is doing all of the time. Once shoplifters know that you can see them, they’ll be less likely to try to steal something from your store. And if they do try, then you’ll have gotten a good look at them and will be able to describe them to authorities.

2) Hire an additional employee or two.

Studies have shown that an extra employee per shift is enough to keep most shoplifters at bay. After all, it’s tougher to make a clean getaway when there are more eyes watching them. You don’t have to hire a whole bunch of new employees – just a couple – and schedule them when your store is most likely to be targeted.

3) Call the police every time you catch a shoplifter.

It sounds counterintuitive to call the police for every little offense, especially if the item that was stolen costs less than $5.00. However, doing this will make it known that you don’t mess around when it comes to the security of your goods. Having a lackadaisical approach to theft makes it seem like you don’t care and in response, the shoplifters will appear in droves.

4) Keep your store neat and clean.

A messy store makes it hard for shoppers, but it’s a shoplifters dream. If you – and your employees – don’t know what’s on the shelves, then you won’t realize what’s missing until after the thief walks out. The shoplifter might also have access to expensive items that should be on higher shelves, thanks to your messy arrangements of goods.

5) Arrange your checkout line at the front of the store.

Most stores are set up this way these days because it makes it tougher for a shoplifter to just walk out the door. After all, they have to walk past the employee manning the register as well as any other customers. If your store has the registers and checkouts at the back, near the inventory, you should consider moving it to the front.

6) Set up some security cameras out in the open.

While it makes sense to have hidden security cameras – and you can still have a few placed where no one can find them – you also need to have some that are incredibly visible. Shoplifters will see them and be less likely to steal because they know that they’re being recorded. A combination of hidden and obvious cameras works best.

Alternatively, you can even opt for surveillance systems that protect your store from any form of intrusion. There’re a plethora of wireless video surveillance systems available that offer advance features like facial detection, dynamic wide range etc.

7) Make shoppers put their bags in lockers.

While this shows that you don’t trust your shopper and may deter a few, it will make it infinitely harder for shoplifters. Many carry large bags, some lined with foil in order to fool the security tag detectors, and sneak items into them while “shopping.” If they don’t have access to their bags, then they can’t steal what they stashed in them.

8) Arrange the shelves so that easily stolen things are out of reach.

Some items are targeted by shoplifters more than others. If you know what’s most likely to be stolen from your store, then you can make those things harder to get to. Some stores lock these items up in cabinets, place them behind the register, or just set them on high shelves. Your regular shoppers won’t mind the inconvenience because they’ll understand the purpose of your arrangements.

9) Befriend your employees.

It’s a proven fact that your employees are your first line of defense. While you should train them not to be a hero or do anything dangerous to stop a shoplifter, knowing that they’re on your side will help. In fact, some employees might even be the shoplifters! The better your relationship with them, the more they know that you trust them. As a result, they’ll go out of their way to prevent thieves from walking out with your merchandise.

10)  Know the schedule that shoplifters operate on.

There isn’t a set time of the day for shoplifters, but many area stores are hit on a certain schedule. If you know that your store is most likely to be robbed during weekend evenings, then you can have an extra employee or even a security guard on hand to stop them. Knowing this schedule is key.