Bottle Locks Can Improve Operational Shortage While Preventing Theft.
In my articles I tend to focus a lot on retail theft, both employee theft and theft due to shoplifting. Generally these two areas comprise approximately 80% of all the merchandise shortage experienced by retailers. In fact, according to the 2014-2015 Global Retail Theft Barometer shoplifting accounted for 36% of stock shortage while employee theft caused 45% of losses. This leaves 19% of retail losses in 2014-2015 due to other factors 6% of which are vendor shortage and 13% operational issues. When it comes to liquor stores, this can be a significant issue because of the drain it causes to profits. I want to take this opportunity to discuss how bottle locks can help not only with theft prevention but also operational losses.
Without any protection, liquor and wine bottles can be removed from a store without notice and of course, the person can indulge in drinking the beverage(s). Liquor bottle security deters theft and keeps product from being shoplifted. Liquor bottle security may be in the form of lock up display cases or the use of bottle locks. A bottle lock is attached to the top of a bottle and locked in place preventing access to the contents. Although they come in a variety of styles and designs, Alpha security bottle locks are the optimum in merchandise protection. They are nearly impossible to pry off of a bottle without the proper detachment tool, and if an attempt is made to pry it the result may very well be a broken bottle.
Bottle locks are also the preferred method for liquor bottle security because they are compatible with Electronic Article Surveillance (EAS) antennas. Walking through EAS antennas with a bottle that has a lock on it causes the antenna alarm to sound and lights built in the antennas to flash. This alerts store personnel and the customer that they have merchandise on their person or in a shopping cart that in all probability has not been paid for yet.
How does this impact operational shortage and does it make that big a difference for liquor store owners? Let me address the latter question first, does it make a difference for liquor store owners? Absolutely! In an August 31, 2014 forbes.com article, “The Least Profitable Businesses In The U.S.”, writer Mary Ellen Biery cites a “Sageworks” report that lists beer, wine and liquor stores as having a net profit margin of 1.7% ( rated in a 12 month survey ending on 7/1/14). This was the fifth lowest net profit margin industry in a list of fifteen businesses. That is a pretty thin margin, but if operational issues along with theft could be reduced then needless to say, that margin increases and puts more money to the bottom line.
Now, to address how the use of bottle locks can improve operational shortage. It is not uncommon for shoppers to forget about an item left on the bottom rack of a shopping cart or something that has rolled under the child seat of a buggy and after checking out, go to the vehicle and load the items up. If the cashier overlooks these items and they go out the door, there is a strong possibility the merchandise won’t be brought back in and paid for by the customer. This is a big factor in operation shortage. With their EAS capability, should an item(s) with a bottle lock be overlooked by cashier and customer, the lock will activate the antenna alarm as the bottle(s) is rolled out the door. The error can be corrected at the point of sale and a new transaction rung up to account for the stray merchandise.
Liquor bottle security can be used to prevent theft but by using a bottle lock instead of a locking display case you can empower customers to shop and select merchandise with minimal chances for theft. Accidental losses through operational miscues are prevented and profit margins grow.
Liquor bottle security is important and we can help you with it. Call 1.770.426.0547 and let’s talk.