How to Protect your Business from Opportunistic Thieves

Contributed Post

Most thieves tend to be opportunistic. They see an opportunity and they seize it, without any concern for the hardworking owner who is putting in hours of their time just to keep the store in operation. If you want to protect your store against thieves then there are a few things that you can do about this, and it doesn’t take long for you to implement the below solutions.

Making Changes

The first thing that you need to do is change the layout of your store. It doesn’t matter what type of business you run, because the layout of the store plays a huge part in how easy it is for someone to steal something. You also need to think about where your valuable merchandise is stored, how you construct your aisles and even how traffic moves throughout your store. If you have entry and exit points then these need to be limited. The best layout is to have one entry and exit point and then to have the cashier point right next to it. It also helps to have a very open layout. If you have aisles that are stacked high with products then this will limit visibility across the store and it will cause you major problems. If you are unable to avoid doing this then it’s a good idea for you to have mirrors at the end of every aisle so your team have a complete view of your store at all times.

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Cabinets

If you have really valuable merchandise then it is important that you put this in a cabinet. You can even store them behind the register if you want. The best thing about glass cabinets is that they showcase the merchandise without increasing the chance of theft. If you are not able to put all of your valuables into cabinets, then consider storing your smaller, more expensive items in them instead.

Anti-Theft Policies

An anti-theft policy can act as a deterrent to try and stop people from shoplifting in the first place. You have to make sure that any policies that you have are displayed at the store entrance so that everyone can see them as soon as they walk in. You might also want to check your customer bags as they leave the store, as this will again, stop people from feeling as confident in their thieving ability.

Security Devices

Security devices really are invaluable for a huge number of reasons. If someone does decide to shoplift then you can easily catch them in the act. This also gives you proof that they did steal the item from your store, not to mention that it can also be used as evidence. A lot of store-owners think that security devices are expensive and this may be the case for some of them, but there are plenty of cheaper ones available on the market and when you do explore them, you will soon find something suitable for you. You can find out more about that here.

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Know your Times

Did you know that most items are stolen between Wednesday and Saturday? Thieves also tend to operate in the afternoon and on weekends. By taking this information into account, you can then be sure to find out your own peak times for theft. This will give you the chance to protect yourself more and it also helps you to be more alert as well. Little things like this can make a huge difference to your theft rates and it can also help you to be more proactive in stopping it from happening once and for all.

Keep it Clean

If your store is messy or really unorganised then this will make it much easier for shoplifters to steal from you. This is especially the case if you are not sure what goes where. If you want to increase your security then it is so important that you keep everything super clean and organised. When you do this, you can then feel confident knowing that if something does go missing, you know about it right away so you can deal with it.

Build Relationships

Your customers are a huge part of your business. The more you know them, the less likely they are to try and steal from you. Try and get to know them by name, ask them how they are and enter general conversation. When you do this, you can then build a level of trust. Your customers are also a valuable part of your security as well. If they see someone stealing then they will be much more likely to report it, or even try and stop the thief if they have a good relationship with you.

Build Employee Trust

It’s so important that you let your employees know that they are valued and that they are appreciated. Internal theft can damage your business just as much as shoplifting. If your employees feel as though they are engaged with your business and if they feel as though the work that they are doing has value, then they will be happier and less likely to steal from you. Most employee thefts are also reported by another employee as well, so this is a really important concept for you to take into account.

Loiterers

If you have people who tend to loiter outside your business then this is usually a sign that there may be trouble ahead. It is much easier for a group of people to steal something when compared to a single person. There isn’t much that you can do about this, but if you do have a group of people who hang around your store then it may be worth having security move them on if possible.

Run a Well-Oiled Machine

A well-oiled machine is far easier to steal from when compared to one that is in ruin. Ask your employees to pay attention, run them through the top shoplifters in the area and teach them how to spot potential crime. If your customers know that your team are always watching, they will be far less likely to try and steal from you.