There is a fine line between keeping your merchandise secure, and inconveniencing your customer. You want to keep the customers happy, but also prevent shoplifting from occurring at the same time. There is a good balance you can attain, and it starts with policy and training. If you have a policy regarding lock up merchandise, make sure that every member of your team knows and understands the reasons behind the policy, so there are no exceptions.
You may want to keep your some of your merchandise locked up, but not all of it. Start with the most valuable merchandise, and consider locking it in a display cabinet, so your customers can still see the item. If this doesn’t work for your business or merchandise, there are several products from Alpha Security that will fit your needs, such as the Alpha Spider Wrap. This is a versatile device that can fit many different types of merchandise. It allows you to keep your products out on the shelf, while still securing the item to prevent shoplifting.
I recall a shopping trip I took to a major retailer a few years ago, when the employees didn’t quite understand the concept of lockup security. I walked into the store looking to purchase a new video game, so I went straight toward the electronics department. When I got to the electronics department, no one was around anywhere. I finally found an employee and I asked them for a game that was in a lockup cabinet. The employee responded by telling me that they didn’t have the keys, and they would have to call someone else to help me get the game. So the employee called for help, and about fifteen minutes later someone finally arrived to the department. I told the employee which game I wanted, and they retrieved the game out of the showcase. The next thing that happened was almost unbelievable. After waiting all that time for the employee to get the game out of the showcase, they just handed me the game and said, “Here you go,” and began walking away. I then asked the employee if I had to pay for this in the electronics department, and they said that I could pay for it up front.
I don’t think the employees in this store understood the reasons for locking up expensive and high theft items. If merchandise is locked up in some way, the employee shouldn’t just be handing it to the customer to walk around the store. That defeats the entire purpose of having the items locked in the showcase. The merchandise should have been rung up right in the electronics department, or held for me until I was finished with my other shopping, and then walked to a register. If I was a dishonest person, I may have seized the opportunity that the employee created for me, by not following company policies.
The only inconvenience that I experienced in this situation was not from the merchandise being locked up, but instead it was a customer service issue. Making your customers wait a long time to make a purchase is never a good idea. If merchandise is locked up, your team should be responding immediately for any requests. You can achieve the balance you are seeking with lockup security and keeping your customers happy. All you have to do is ensure they are fully trained on policy and how to properly use any retail anti-theft devices that your store. Fast customer service should be priority one, regardless of whether or not the merchandise is secured.
For more information contact us: Prevent Shoplifting or call 1.770.426.0547