Shoplifting and Employee Theft Take a Heavy Toll on Retail Businesses
In 2015, shoplifting accounted for well over a third of all inventory losses in retail environments. This staggering figure significantly cuts into the profit margins of all retail businesses, although smaller companies are often hit harder than larger ones. Retail security systems offer many advantages to retail businesses and are highly likely to minimize inventory losses, increase profits, and decrease insurance rates. In order to achieve the maximum benefits in retail store security, cameras must be located in particular locations and are available in a number of styles to meet the needs of all retail locations.
Estimates indicate that over $13 billion in product inventory is lost to shoplifting each year. Add to that figure the amount of employee theft and "sweethearting" (a term describing unauthorized discounts given to friends or family members of an employee) that occurs in many establishments and it becomes easy to see how retail store security and shop security systems are so critical to maximize profits. While it is still important to greet every customer that comes into your store, make frequent eye contact, carefully monitor items that are taken into dressing rooms and warn potential shoplifters that your company prosecutes shoplifting with one or more signs, retail security systems add an element of protection that cannot be matched by other means alone.
Different Types of Retail Security Systems
A number of different styles of retail and shop security systems are available to meet the needs in your specific location. You may or may not need day/night visibility and/or high definition features included in your retail store security, for example. Indoor/outdoor enclosures give greater flexibility in camera mounting locations while vandal-proof cameras are encased in a protective housing that is designed to withstand damage or abuse. You'll also be able to select the camera body style that best fits with your store environment; dome cameras are considered more aesthetically pleasing and discreet while bullet, box, or vandal dome cameras serve as a bolder visual deterrent to potential shoplifters.
If you own a small or growing business, or have multiple locations, there are highly advanced surveillance systems available now that have robust cloud applications that give you real time alerts to your mobile devices and collect data that can be used for tracking events, employee movement and access, and many more factors. These analytics can be used for many purposes, such as determining where to place certain merchandise for higher sales or reduced shrinkage and much more.
Important Locations to Install Cameras
Regardless of the specifics of your store, retail security systems should include cameras focused on specific locations, including:
- All entrance(s) and exit(s). Obtaining a clear image of all customers as they enter and exit the store is critical in identifying suspected shoplifters and can be provided as evidence to local authorities when needed.
- Directly above all cash registers. Store owners and managers only have one way to know for sure if an employee is offering unauthorized discounts or pocketing a portion of the cash they handle; by installing cameras directly above all cash registers and focusing on the scanner itself if applicable, employee theft can be identified and corrected.
- In the parking lot. For retail stores with their own parking lot, installing an outdoor camera offers a critical aspect of retail store security, as many break-ins occur with vehicles belonging to customers and employees alike.
- On the sales floor. Depending on the size of your retail environment, you'll need one or more cameras focused on the sales floor. Retail store security is further enhanced when cameras specifically target poorly lit areas or other difficult to observe zones.
- In the warehouse. Warehouses, docks, and loading trucks are surprisingly vulnerable to retail theft. Shop security systems that include one or more cameras in the warehouse will reduce losses.
Increase Your Profits in More Ways than One
In addition to the reduced inventory loss that installing retail security systems provides, your business is also likely to benefit from lowered insurance premiums and a safer work environment. Employees often maintain a higher level of care and awareness when they realize they are being recorded; they have even been shown to reduce the number of false worker's compensation claims. Overall, investing in retail security systems is an excellent move for your business.
If you own or manage a business in the Spokane, Portland, or Seattle regions, Allied provides some of the most advanced retail security systems tailored to the needs of your business. Click here to schedule a free security survey to ensure your business is assessed for all vulnerabilities and security needs.