According to the National Retail Federation’s 2012 survey, retail theft continues to plague the industry, with billions of dollars of merchandise walking out of stores every year. If you’re one of the many small storeowners considering whether security cameras might help the situation, here are some questions to ask yourself:
One of the key points to keep in mind with the installation of security cameras is that they can come with some risk of privacy infringement. Research the legalities involved before putting cameras in your store.
Some insurance companies offer discounts for strategies that reduce liabilities, and installing security cameras may qualify you. Talk with your insurance agent and be sure to mention other strategies you’re employing to reduce shrinkage (like employee training) to see if you can get even lower rates.
How customers walk through a store is crucial, and a camera might catch how they bypass high-ticket items because of improper product placement or poor store layout. Examining customer traffic through the course of a day or a week can provide vital information on how to adjust your store’s layout in order to change traffic patterns.
In general, stores may get security benefits without extensive systems, especially in small shops where security mirrors and motion detectors can reduce theft and loss without much investment.
If you’re weary of potential privacy issues or you’re just not looking to invest in security cameras yet, you may want to try out low-tech or even no-tech approaches like better store layout, stapling bags closed at checkout and employee training. And if it turns out a camera system is exactly what you need? You’ll find plenty of options available to help keep your retail small business safe.