Invest in The Tools, But Use Them Correctly
Owners and managers of small businesses, especially those in retail stores, must have an Anti-Shoplifting plan. That includes customer service, awareness, inventory controls, and even product protection tools. There are many types of these tools your business can invest in. One particular key player in this set of tools is the Checkpoint System. The antennas monitor the foot traffic coming in and out of your doors. They can maintain a customer count for you that is not based solely on sales so you know the actual number of people that entered your store. There are also merchandise tags that work with the antennas. When those tags are placed on the items, they are considered active. When those items are brought to the register for purchase, the tags are deactivated at the counter. If there is an attempt to remove merchandise from the store that still has active tags attached, the alarm will sound.
There are other types of tags sold by Checkpoint. Our store utilizes one that can be very useful. It is a small round clear label that has our logo, company name, and location printed on it. This label has two Anti-Shoplifting benefits. First of all, for the everyday petty thief, this tag is a deterrent because they are obviously placed on the front or top of the package. These tags are not meant to be hidden. The other benefit is that if you have an encounter with a professional shoplifting group wiping out your shelves, these labels give the authorities a better chance of determining exactly where the stolen merchandise came from and give your business a better chance of a recovery.
Two important things you must do with any tools you buy to protect your inventory is keep track of them, and use them consistently. Test your antennas on a regular basis, and make sure they are working properly. Don’t place your rolls of tags near the deactivation pads at the checkout, or they will be rendered useless. And pay attention to the items you have tagged.
The following is an example of “what not to do”. Please control your inevitable laughter at my expense. A couple years ago, I was called to the front to assist a woman that had come in to refund a couple boxes of diet pills with no receipt. They were expensive, so I questioned her about when and where she had purchased them. She claimed she had bought them from one of our other locations about half an hour away about two weeks before. I asked to see her license, and it indicated she lived in a completely different town from where we were and where she said she bought the pills. I refused the return, and told her if she were to successfully refund them, she would need to take them back where she bought them. She took the boxes of pills and exited the store. A few minutes after she left, my cashier came up to me and said she knew the lady was lying anyway. I asked her what gave her that feeling, and she said she saw the stickers on those boxes were ours.
I never even saw them, right on the tops of the packages. And, I am the very person that put the labels on them. Reviewing the video revealed the cashier was absolutely correct. The lady concealed them, walked out the door, and came back in to attempt the refund.
I learned a valuable lesson and I have not made that simple, yet costly, mistake again. Anti-Shoplifting tools can only do their job, not mine or yours.
For more information contact us: Antishoplifting.net or call 1.770.426.0547