It’s finally football season again! It’s been a long, long off season. While, my team completely bombed today, sales for licensed apparel gear across the country have skyrocketed. There is no doubt that team spirit is a huge boost for sales. All those team emblazoned shirts, hats and jerseys can make your profits fly down field. So, what does Jeremy Johnson and stolen jerseys have in common? They both turn over really, really well. So if you’re in the business of selling team apparel, you should have Checkpoint tags in your playbook.
Of many things, my stores carry a large array of both professional and collegiate apparel and I can tell you from personal experience, people are stealing this product every hour of every day. This is especially true as the home teams do even better, since demand gets higher. It I weren’t using clothing security tags, I really don’t think we’d be very profitable.
Last season, I had a particular store who was seeing high shrink in this area of the store. We stepped up the LP presence but it didn’t seem like it was making a difference. Shipments would arrive to the store, the apparel team would apply the checkpoint tags and put the items on the floor. Even with the additional security measures, we were still losing thousands a month. It seemed like every 3rd or 4th shoplifter we were busting was stealing licensed apparel, but again, on paper, we weren’t making a dent. I had to help this store stem the losses, or the season would be a disappointment.
There was a new shipment of product coming in on the next Monday morning. I decided to watch the process (from CCTV) of when the product was received, through the time it was placed on the shelf. I watched as the delivery driver dropped off 4 cases of shirts. The manager signed for the delivery and staged the merchandise in the warehouse. 3 hours later, an associate began applying checkpoint tags, then eventually merchandised them on the sales floor. I went to personally count the inventory and that’s where I found a discrepancy. The driver should’ve dropped off 6 cases. The manager failed to properly account for the delivery and only assumed that it was correct. A little camera work and some digging through invoices showed the same thing had been happening over and over again for months. We’ve now reached the two minute warning. It was time to put this to an end.
I set up surveillance for the following delivery date. I had the invoice faxed to me from the vendor, so I knew that there should be 7 cases dropped to the store. I also talked with our vendor rep and they did me a favor by attaching some clothing security tags to the merchandise with my store’s name on them. So, there in the parking lot of the store at 3:30am, I sat. Right on time, the driver shows up and unloads 5 cases of merchandise. The lackadaisical manager again blindly signs for the shipment and goes on about his day, unaware that this delivery driver is robbing him blind. The driver pulls out of our lot, with me right behind.
A few miles down the road, he makes a stop at a corner store. There, he grabs two boxes from his truck and heads inside. So do I. I grab a cup of coffee and watch and he and the owner of the store exchange two cases of licensed apparel product for a few hundred bucks in cash. They shake hands and the driver says, “I’ll see you next week, buddy!” as he drives off to continue his shift.
I head back to the car and make a phone call to local police. I have an officer meet me at the store where I explain to him what just occurred. We both go inside to meet with the owner who vehemently denies any knowledge of any shipments. I see the boxes behind the counter and ask for them to be opened. There, in plain sight were the jerseys I was missing. I was able to prove beyond any doubt they were mine, as they each had a clothing security tag firmly attached… with my store’s name on it.
For more information about Check Point Tags contact us or call 1.770.426.0547