Recently I watched as a clerk in a local convenience store was stocking his shelves with liquor bottles in an area much too close to the door. I asked him if he had suffered any losses and he related to me just the other day how some guys kept him busy at the front of the store while two guys helped themselves to five bottles of hard liquor and left the store. He said it was not that uncommon and he was researching what to do about it. I told him I had seen a good solution for bottle security in a liquor store across town—the same solution I will share with you.
Grab and runs were not that uncommon when I was a law enforcement officer so I always noted the displays and how the store tried to provide liquor bottle security. Many used bottle locks such as the ones developed by Alpha security. In today’s store environment you not only have to contend with the juvenile trying to get out of your store with a liquor bottle but the organized retail criminal who is trying to get multiples of your product for resale. Any solution has to deal with both threats.
Alpha security developed a bottle lock that meets those challenges posed by both classes of shoplifters. The bottle lock fits over the cap of the bottle and locks in place with a special Alpha key. When someone tries to leave with a bottle it is going to active your EAS system or if they are fortunate to get out of your store, they are still stuck with a bottle they cannot open. They have to have the special key to remove the lock that your cashier has so he or she can remove the lock when the customer BUYS the bottle. They are more likely to break the bottle than open it.
This denial-of-service capability makes both the juvenile offender and the experienced criminal think about the return-on-investment of their time in taking your merchandise. They go through the same process unthinkingly as we do as business professionals. Is the reward worth the risk? In most cases, they will determine it isn’t and meander down the street to a softer target—your competitor.
These relatively inexpensive bottle locks fit over the cap in a way that the product label is still visible and the product can still be handled by your customer. Combined with an electronic article surveillance system (EAS) they make a strong deterrent for any shoplifter. Not too long ago I saw a report where a juvenile had stolen a bottle of vodka from the local convenience store that did not have EAS installed but did have liquor bottle security. It seems that the juvenile got home and couldn’t figure out how to open the vodka and get the lock off the bottle. He called his friend, who happened to be the son of a deputy sheriff. The deputy overheard their conversation and he went to the juvenile’s house and confronted the boy, who confessed to the shoplifting and returned the liquor to the store with an apology as one of his terms of juvenile diversion.
It is even more frustrating for the experienced criminal who is getting the liquor for resale. Just exactly how is he going to sell bottles of liquor to someone when the bottle has a bottle lock on it? That might make for some interesting conversation between reseller and customer.
Going back to the original clerk in the convenience store I was at, you now know the advice that I gave him. Protect you valuable liquor products in the same way I recommended to him. Get bottle security from Alpha security and keep the liquor in your bottle and in your store until it is in the hands of your paying customer!
For more information about bottle locks contact us or call 1-770-426-0547 or at www.bottlelock.net