Would you believe that one single shoplifter caused over $15,000 in loss between just 3 of my stores? It’s true. Two years ago I was running some audits of inventory data for a group of stores all located in the same metropolitan area. I noticed that all 3 were reporting heavy losses on a particular NFL jersey. These retail for $150 each, so I immediately suspected we had a theft problem. I paid a visit to those stores the next week and realized that we had these jerseys in a secluded section of the store. Furthermore, they were unprotected for such a high dollar item. We needed to make some changes and that included utilizing different types of clothing security products.
I had a budget, like most people do. I knew exactly how much profit each jersey gave the store, so I had to find a product that was inexpensive, but was also effective. Spending too much would start to erode my profits, spending too little would not give me the security I felt we needed. At the time, I figured that anyone who wanted one of these jerseys were just helping themselves. Boy, was I way off. I quickly learned that there were hundreds of products out there and each one promised to stop my losses. I went with a simple, inexpensive ink tag. This particular brand matched the de-activation equipment already in use in my stores and the ink wouldn’t really explode… it was a deterrent. I wanted to get the most for my budget dollars and only purchased enough to cover the stock at store that reported the highest loss. I thought this would also give me a better idea of where the loss was stemming from.
A month went by after the tags were installed and I asked for an inventory to be conducted on the jerseys. As I expected, the store with the clothing security devices installed reported $0 loss on those jerseys. I was elated. Elated until I saw the other two store’s inventory data. It seemed like I just pushed the loss to the two unprotected stores. I immediately had tags shipped to those other two locations. At least I knew my investment was effective. I also began to investigate the losses. I knew I was in those stores on a certain date, and I knew when the losses had occurred by (the inventory date). I went back and reviewed the store’s camera system and after a couple of hours of review, I saw the same shoplifter come into the store anywhere between 2 and 3 times a day. Everyday. Each time, he would take one jersey into the fitting room. I assume he concealed in on his person in the stall, since he would exit the fitting room and head straight to the front door. I looked at the store that had the tags deployed and again saw the same shoplifter. The difference? He was deterred by the clothing security device.
We were able to make a case and found that this one individual was responsible for over $15,000 in loss. What could my stores have done with those extra sales? What could your stores do with that much in extra sales? Shoplifters will take advantage of any business, no matter the size. Don’t fall victim to someone who doesn’t want to work for a living.
For more information, contact us at Clothing Security, or call 1.770.426.0547