Shoplifting causes significant losses for retailers. Even if the individual goods value is not particularly high: In total, even small crimes can become an economic burden. Dealers can take countermeasures with effective anti-theft protection. We explain to you what theft prevention in retail can look like. For example, it is important to train employees accordingly. You can also prevent this with the interior design of your shop. Technical aids such as video cameras and special labels also make a contribution.
Shoplifting causes damage of 2.26 billion euros
German retailers had to record inventory losses totaling four billion euros in 2016 alone. This is shown by the EHI study “Inventory Differences in German Retail 2017”. In addition, the dealers put around 1.3 billion euros into measures to prevent theft and secure goods. As a result, the inventory losses result in overall sales losses of 1.3 percent for retailers. With around 2.26 billion euros, shoplifting by customers causes the greatest damage to retailers. On average, every German citizen steals goods worth EUR 27 per year. This is followed by theft by the company’s own employees (820 million euros) and by suppliers (300 million euros). In contrast, losses of around 640 million euros are due to organizational causes. You can get the options here with Merriam Municipal Lawyer.
- Unfortunately, there is no insurance against ordinary shoplifting. As a trader, it is up to you to make life difficult for potential thieves in order to avoid such losses.
The good news: If you invest in a camera surveillance system to prevent theft, for example, it is included in the inventory. And that is covered by the Real Assets and Income module in insurance for retailers.
Retail Theft Prevention: Common Actions
The EHI study also shows what retailers are doing to prevent shoplifting: 96 percent rely on employee training and 90 percent carry out a data analysis of the inventory management system. 83 percent analyze POS data. When it comes to specific measures in business, open camera surveillance is ahead with 78 percent. 62 percent rely on article security and 54 percent use anti-theft sales carriers. Department store detectives without (46 percent) and with camera use (33 percent) are also popular. Uniformed security guards, who are supposed to act as a deterrent, are used by 43 percent of the companies surveyed.
Detect thieves and prevent shoplifting
Employee training is one of the most important measures to protect against theft – as the study shows. Your staff should know exactly how to detect thieves and how to react correctly in the event of shoplifting. Attentive employees act as a deterrent to those with dishonest intentions. But how do you recognize suspicious customers? After all, it is not in your best interest to scare away honest buyers with accusations. These behaviors can betray a thief:
Close observation of the seller
- Restless behavior
- Seemingly aimless walking around
- Frequent look at the exits and possibly existing cameras and mirrors
- Voluminous jackets and open pockets or backpacks
- Items are hand-held, not a basket or shopping cart
- Groups of people covering up each other to disguise shoplifting
When employees become suspicious, they should target suspicious customers. A simple “Can I help you?” Shows the potential thief that he has been noticed and is under surveillance. If the customer is honest, in case of doubt they will be more pleased about the attention and the offer of help.