Five Tips to Stop Would-Be Shoplifters Before They Steal

Don’t think shoplifting is a big problem in retail stores today? Think again. According to Time Inc, shoplifting cost businesses $48.9 billion in 2016. That’s nothing to sneeze at. While you may not be able to eliminate shoplifting in your retail businesses completely, there are things you can do to reduce its frequency in your shops, like the five things listed below.

  1. Use Push to Talk Two Way Radios for Retail

Push to talk two-way radios provide your staff the ability to discretely communicate with security personnel if they see suspicious activity or have concerns that shoppers are stealing. This provides prompt attention to the would-be thieves and brings added eyes into the situation to catch them before they’re able to leave with your merchandise.

  1. Install GPS Tracking Tags in High Dollar Items

Shoplifting is often a crime of opportunity from people looking for an “easy” score. GPS tracking devices add new layers of complexity to the steal that will discourage those looking for a convenient steal, often preventing the theft altogether. If theft does occur, it increases the odds of recovering the stolen items.

  1. Optimize Store Layout to Prevent Shoplifting

There’s an old saying about things that are out of sight being out of mind. Arrange merchandise in your stores so that tempting targets for shoplifters are within easy line of vision for retail staff, video cameras, mirrors, and security staff. This will help to remind people in your store that there are eyes everywhere and make it more difficult for them to pull off daring thefts.

  1. Install Security Cameras

These cameras are highly effective at deterring shoplifters who aren’t interested in having evidence of their crimes captured live and in color. The picture clarity on modern surveillance equipment is far superior than in years past and provides invaluable evidence against the thieves if shoplifting does occur.

  1. Educate Your Staff

Train your staff to look for opportunities visitors have to shoplift and the things they can do to prevent it from happening. From early customer engagement, letting visitors know they’ve been seen by staff upon entering the store and being out on the sales floor throughout the shift, to where thieves commonly hide the items they’ve lifted:

  • Baby strollers.
  • Shopping bags.
  • Purses and handbags.

These five things won’t eliminate all shoplifting, but they can go a long way toward reducing shoplifting problems in your retail stores.

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