Shoplifters SUCK

Posted: Tuesday, March 27th, 2012 at 1:30 pm

Shoplifters SUCK Image

As the Experts like to say, “statistics don’t lie” I was thinking about statistics a couple nights ago after having a conversation with both of my managers about a shoplifting incident (or at least a suspected incident).  I had to install theft protection systems at both stores out of necessity and on the recommendation of a number of people when we opened our mall store.  Still 14k later, we have some theft and the statistics tell me it is from a couple of different “groups”.  Everyone thinks its mostly kids, they are  willing to take a big risk for a reward of something they really want but can’t pay for.  Statistically however it is regular Jack and Jill adults that make up 75% of all shoplifting (kids are 25%).  Only a small percentage are considered pros (3%), the rest are “casual”.

It is the casual shoplifter who has me scratching my head, some research suggests that most can easily pay for items but the shoplifter likes the rush, “described as being as addictive as drugs”.  The average shoplifter gets away 48 times before they get caught.

These are people who the statistics say “you least expect them to steal”.

That’s what I have going on now.  The staff has suspected a team of 2 for a number of years.  Cute, related to each other and not what I’d call Sketchy in the classic sense.  I was skeptical as I wanted to believe they would not steal from us, they are good customers.  Well I now am convinced of it, they tend to work as a team, buy some put some on hold and steal some too.  Distract and divide the staff and create the opportunity.  We have found a couple of tags in pockets or tucked behind something in the store, and it correlates to when this twosome is in the store.

We had the discussion about if could we just ban them from coming in?  I said no, not until we catch them, and I would like the satisfaction of catching them.  So we stay vigilant and continue to work harder at better customer service.   Mostly because I want customers to feel like we are attentive to their needs and offer better service than any of our competitors, but also to help alleviate the opportunity to steal from me.

So we do pay attention, and sooner or later we will catch them, the entire staff know who they are maybe the next visit will be the 48th.  It will be uncomfortable for sure, way more uncomfortable for them than me.  Shoplifting SUCKS!