Of the average $40 billion in U.S. retail theft annually, a significant share of that is unfortunately stuffed into stockings and swept out the door during the holidays.
As your team is gearing up for the holiday rush, it’s important to remember that great customer service is far and away the best way to deter retail theft. Consider having increased employee presence on the sales floor to greet and offer assistance to every member and customer.
You might also consider having a greeter at the front door during those really busy times welcoming people to your store and wishing folks a happy holiday. The simple act of making contact and removing that sense of anonymity can often deter theft before it happens.
Reminding your staff to look out for shoplifters, also reminds them that you’re looking out as well; if your staff know you’re being extra vigilant, they’ll be less likely to steal themselves.
Front End Frenzy
Your Front End is exceedingly vulnerable when it’s crammed with shoppers and overflowing carts. Remind your Front End staff what to look out for and who to contact should they see anything suspicious.
- Keep an extra eye out for anyone bypassing the registers and heading straight for the door.
- Always check the bottom of baskets and carts, and look inside all bulk purchases.
- Take your time, don’t get flustered.
You should also make sure you have enough registers open to accommodate your increased traffic, and have baggers working those busy hours to keep things flowing smoothly.
Festivus for the Rest of Us!
With all those distinctive holiday gifts, decorations, and specialty items cheering up your aisles and end-caps, remember to maintain a clean, well-organized sales floor, and remind your staff to take note if they’re re-stocking any specific products more frequently than they may have otherwise.
Keep small, specialty, commonly stolen items in plain view, merchandising especially targeted items in the front of your store, near the registers, or in another highly visible area.
While there may be no way to completely protect your store against shoplifting, stepping up security and awareness during the holidays certainly can’t hurt. That said, the holidays are about joy and rejoicing with your community, so that, should be your number one priority.
Grab and Go Solutions is a resource from CDS Consulting Co-op to provide easy to implement solutions to common issues facing food co-ops. Watch for future releases tackling a wide variety of topics including HR, governance, member engagement, safety, store and growth.
Brought to you by the CDS Consulting Co-op Safety & Security consultants