Is There a Best Way to Prevent Shoplifting?

Actually, there is no one best way to prevent shoplifting.  Wherever merchandise is displayed there will be shoplifters, like flies around honey.

The best approach is to use a combination of shoplifting prevention methods that are customized for your customer base, location, and merchandise mix.  Although shoplifters will steal most anything, there are particular groups and types of merchandise that need extra attention.  These are the items that are “high theft/high value”.

Some of the more common strategies used by retailers to prevent shoplifting are:

· CCTV is good deterrent, but much more useful if there is staff available to watch the real time; otherwise they can only prove an event occurred.  Added value is to disprove slip and fall claims.

· Trained plainclothes store detectives are a great for large businesses with the budget to support them. Word gets out fast that a store is arresting and prosecuting shoplifters.

· Uniformed Police or Security Guards are also a budget buster, but necessary in some areas where shoplifting is rampant and violence is a threat.  These are more of a robbery deterrent than a way to prevent shoplifting.

· Placing merchandise in lockable display cabinets is secure, but will it reduce sales, or take too much of the staff’s time to unlock and relock?  And will they remember to do it?

· Posted signs that indicate shoplifters will be prosecuted may prevent some impulse thieves, but it may be a turn-off to legitimate shoppers.

· Arranging merchandise to keep high theft items near an occupied wrap stand, raise the cashier area for better viewing, and eliminate hidden areas are low cost avenues to prevent shoplifting.

· Training staff in shoplifting awareness policies and procedures will show them how to act or react when they see or suspect a shoplifter in the store.  This is another low cost/high value activity.

· Increase staffing when shoplifters are likely to hit.  Opening, closing, and after school are prime times for some stores.

· Every customer should be greeted soon after entering the store, so they are aware that someone knows they are there.  This is also a great customer service strategy.

· Retail anti theft devices (EAS) such as Checkpoint Security Systems. Checkpoint Security Systems electronic theft detection systems are designed to detect merchandise that has active Checkpoint Security Tags attached and emit an alarm as the shoplifter leaves the store.  Checkpoint security tags can only be removed by the cashier at the point of sale.

The retailer who wants to prevent shoplifting at his place of business should consider combining several of the methods that apply to his situation.

To see the latest in Checkpoint Security Systems and Checkpoint Security tags, visit our Online Loss Prevention Store.

Call 866-914-2567 to speak with an expert about Checkpoint Security Systems, Checkpoint Security tags, and other ways to prevent shoplifting, or click here for more information.