I’ve been a retail manager for many years, and I’ve added to my tool chest of Anti-Shoplifting powers. Shoplifting is rampant in our stores and it’s enough to frustrate even the most calm employees, and make them start to become bitter and take it more personally each time. I’ve seen once mild mannered people run out the door after a thief (even though that is very much a policy violation!). I’ve seen managers turn off the front door and stand there waiting for the guy to come up and try to leave with the merchandise. Okay, that time it was actually me. That man literally begged me to let him leave after he handed me back all the name brand pain medicines he had stuffed in his pants. I refused to move from in front of the door and he turned and bolted out the emergency exit. The police got there too late to catch him, but hey, I got my stuff back and I never saw the man again. Those, of course, are the bad examples of Anti-Shoplifting tactics. Even my own stupid antics were years ago, and I’ve definitely learned more efficient and safer ways to keep the bad guys out, or let them know I’m aware of their presence.
I have found that for real results, communication is the key. Make friends in the area. If you’re a small chain, have a plan to contact the others close by and let them know all the details you can about what happened and give a good description of the suspect. If you’re a single specialty business, get to know your competition. If a shoplifter hits you, he or she will likely hit a similar business for similar items. You already keep up with the other store’s prices and selection, so get to know the owners and staff too. You aren’t going to share sales information, but you can certainly help one another stop potential theft. Get to know the big box store’s managers and LP staff in your area as well. These guys have lots of awesome camera equipment and they likely have a huge database of known thieves. You may or may not compete with them for sales and customers, but they can give you names and pictures of people to watch out for in the community. If you are a specialty jewelry shop, and they have a jewelry theft from their counters, they are more apt to call and warn you if you’ve reached out to them already. You need a deep Anti-Shoplifting arsenal. Prevent the theft from happening in the first place, and you save yourself a lot more trouble than if you catch them. If you recognize the thief when they come in the door, you are prepared to give them excellent customer service immediately and make it near impossible to steal from you. It saves you from trying to apprehend them, trying to get your merchandise back without damage, piles of paperwork, and the endless days in court.
On top of all that, you need to have a good relationship with your local police. Know the detectives that normally deal with property crimes. Get their email, and contact them occasionally for any new trends in the area, and new people to watch out for.
You can be well rewarded if you expand your base of business and community friends.
For more information contact us: Antishoplifting.net or call 1.770.426.0547