When I began researching this short article I was aghast at the number of robberies that occur in Australia every year. Over 15,000 robberies were recorded by the Australian Institute of Crime for 2009. Shoplifting is becoming a major problem for small business however you will find strategies that you could implement to minimise the possibility of someone stealing from you.
The staggering figure is that over half of all small businesses have already been a prey of crime and on average will miss $7,800 a year as a result of shoplifting and burglary. Whilst certain business types and industries are far more susceptible to robberies such as for example corner stores, pharmacies, newsagencies and bottle shops, any small business may be affected by this type of crime.
There are a few simple steps that you could implement to simply help minimise your shop being a shoplifting victim.
The first step is to make sure that you have a clearly articulated policy for shoplifters. The policy should identify how you will deal with a shoplifter and the way you handle them if you catch someone. We all know from research that companies which have a powerful shoplifter policy and a tough prosecution policy is less apt to be a target of shoplifting. Mind you it doesn't guarantee that you won't have a problem.
The best deterrent from theft is to possess staff which are always on the lookout for people who look like they may be around no good. A great camera system is also another great deterrent but the stark reality is that most professional crooks don't care about the cameras. I have observed footage of theft gangs that just don't care should they get caught or are noticed on camera. Surveillance cameras will also be becoming a very important tool in prosecuting the offenders because they give undisputable proof of the offence.
The key with shoplifting is to catch them before they leave your store so having staff travelling the isles and a camera system will give you the very best distinct defence. Other tools that work as well are convex mirrors, two ways mirrors and peepholes at key points and positions in your store. Always ensure there are no dead areas in your store where potential thieves can actually steal the physical products.
As it pertains to staff management ensure that you assign a staff member to different regions of the store and ensure it is their responsibility to protect those areas. Another simple technique is to encourage your staff to greet any visitor to your store. This can often put the potential crook on the rear foot.
There are a few key things to look for when you're monitoring your store:
1. Monitor you customers to see should they maintain eye contact. Quite often a shoplifter could have shaking hands and their eyes will be constantly looking around
2. Watch for customers who simply wander through the store whilst trying to avoid your staffs attention
3. Customers with baggy clothes and particularly hoodies are a major concern especially when the current weather doesn't match their clothes
4. Monitor your colleagues to see if they are distracted whilst certainly one of their accomplices could possibly be doing the theft.
Finally it should be store policy that bags, boxes, purses and cases are susceptible to an assessment just before leaving the store. It's also wise to include anti-shoplifting signs in your store to make sure that everyone knows you take shoplifting seriously and to apply shoplifting class georgia.
Whilst no one of these simple tips will in actuality stop a theft, they'll certainly allow you to in minimising the possibility that the small business would have been a victim of shoplifting.