According to many studies, it’s probably more than you think.
The National Retail Federation said store theft, fraud, and other types of loss — collectively known as “shrink” — totaled $61.7 billion in 2019, which was $11 billion more than the estimated figures for 2018.
Small, easily concealed items can be especially attractive to thieves, since they can be quickly slipped into a coat or pants pocket.
Fortunately, there are many things store owners can do to reduce the chances of becoming a victim of retail theft. Here are five simple ways to fight back.
- Get organized. A clean, uncluttered store is less enticing to shoplifters and easier to keep an eye on. Ensure shelves are organized so that you’ll quickly notice if anything is missing.
- Keep merchandise within your line of sight. For small items like 5-hour ENERGY®, keeping them on the counter and close to the register not only encourages impulse sales, it also allows you to keep an eye on stock, discouraging theft.
- Develop a positive workplace atmosphere. Frequently praise your employees’ good work. Employees are less likely to steal when they feel valued. Consider offering a discount on employee purchases to create even more goodwill.
- Train employees to spot potential shoplifters. Watch for customers wearing unusually bulky clothing (a heavy coat during warm weather) or a large group standing unnaturally close together.
- Promptly greet every customer. Making verbal and eye contact lets would-be shoplifters know that store staff is watching.
Hopefully these tips will help you “shrink” the chances of becoming a victim of theft.