The festive season is one of the most profitable for retailers. But, with this upsurge in business comes certain risks. During the festive period, there is an estimated 100% increase in theft. Theft can be devastating for any business, but larger stores and chains generally have allowances and strict procedures in places for theft. For smaller retailers, who have little security and may not have any theft prevention procedures in place, shoplifting can eat into profits and leave businesses in tatters. However, something as simple as changing your shop fittings can not only help prevent theft but make your store more usable and appealing for your customers.
An unbelievable number of stores still leave expensive items out on display
in their premises. This is a magnet for opportunist thieves who will be able to effortlessly walk out with a chunk of your profits, particularly during the festive season when all your members of staff are extremely busy. By putting your most expensive items in a lockable display cabinet, opportunistic theft can be deterred. As an extra layer of security, you can put 'dummy' versions of your goods in the display cabinets, and keep the real things safely locked away in the store room.
As well as acting as a deterrent to theft, they also offer retailers a number of additional benefits. Customers assume items that are locked in display cabinets are extremely valuable. You could use cabinets to alter the perceived value of your goods, making them more desirable. Also, rather than merely taking a product to the till and paying for it, staff have to intervene when a customer enquires about an item in a display cabinet. This will allow staff to explain the benefits and features of your products and hopefully close a deal.
Although you may have invested in lockable display cases, the way that your store is laid out could be creating opportunities for thieves. Instead of filling your shop with dark corners and barely-visible displays, you should design your store layout to discourage shoplifting as much as possible. Avoid displaying products in gloomy or hard to see areas. If you absolutely have to, put your items of lowest value there and use lighting to illuminate it as much as you can. Your till should be positioned where most of the store is visible from. If there are any areas of your shop that are difficult to see, consider using mirrors to make them more visible. Avoid 'overfilling' your store so that it's difficult to see everything and don't put your most valuable items close to exits.
Along with small changes in your shop fittings, there are other measures you can take to prevent theft over the festive period. This can include training your staff in security measures, using signage and security tags and installing a CCTV system. Although statistics say that theft is prevalent during the festive season, taking these small steps could mean that it doesn't affect you.
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