How To Deter Shoplifting In Retail Apparel Stores

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Shoplifting is something that all retail apparel stores must deal with. According to a recent Global Retail Theft Barometer, shoplifting and employee/supplier fraud cost retail businesses more than $128 billion last year ($42 billion in the U.S.). That's roughly 1.29% of all retail sales, attesting to the growing problem of shoplifting.

Thankfully, there are several steps apparel store owners can take to discourage shoplifting, one of which is the use of video surveillance equipment. Some business owners view this as an unnecessary cost that doesn't provide any real benefit, but this statement couldn't be further from the truth. A video surveillance system will allow you to watch over your store 24/7. If a product goes missing, you can review footage to determine exactly what happened.

Even if you don't have the necessary funds to spend on a full-scale video surveillance system, you can always install security mirrors in the ceiling to watch over shoppers. Just the sight of a security mirror will often deter a would-be shoplifter, making this a cost-effective form of security.

It's not something most store owners want to think about, by employee theft is a real concern. In fact, it's estimated that 75% of all U.S. employees have stolen from their employer at least once and 37.5% have stolen at least twice (source). You can reduce the risk of employee theft by taking the time to hire the right employees. Don''t just hire the first job applicant who submits an application, but instead take the time to perform follow-up interviews, check the applicant's background, and compare them to other potential candidates.

Installing security tags on high-dollar products may also reduce the risk of shoplifting. There are literally dozens of different types of security tags designed specifically for use on garments, some of which contain electronic sensors that trigger alarms, whereas others contain ink that may splatter and ruin the garment when the individual attempts to remove it. Regardless of which one you decide to use in your store, you can rest assured knowing that it will help prevent shoplifting.

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  • George Blitzer
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