A story from Media Post Marketing Daily this week reminds us that when the going gets tough, some people just start grabbing stuff. According to the article, 78% of retailers report an increase in opportunistic and amateur shoplifting.
Implications: If you’re in the business of selling things of value, shrinkage is always a concern; even more so when times are tough. While the recovery may be underway for some, others are still feeling the deep effects of recession, so this problem is likely to be pervasive for a while.
Like anything else, loss prevention is not as simple as it used to be. These days, simple shoplifting is only part of the problem, aggravated by things like organized theft rings, internal theft, returns fraud, and high-tech “fencing” (easily selling stolen goods on various websites, such as Craig’s List or e-Bay).
How long has it been since you considered the fundamental security of your inventory? Countermeasures such as (conspicuous) surveillance cameras, RFID-enabled anti-theft systems, and basic security training for store personnel might help preserve profits.