With the holiday rush over, owners of both large and small businesses will be shifting their focus internally. For the first time since October, the consumer experience, product innovation and marketing strategies are being granted creative bandwidth over seasonal sales campaigns. Protection 1 Security Solutions, the second largest security company in the U.S., however, notes that, without addressing fundamental vulnerabilities, the business itself is at risk. According to the FBI, retail crimes will cost American businesses over $30 billion in 2013 alone. With the nature of these crimes constantly diversifying, business owners should educate themselves on the evolving security offerings at their disposal.
Despite what you may have seen in action movies, asset-specific security systems previously were out of the price range of the average business owner. The most realistic option available was to remove valuable products from a display and relocate them to a safe elsewhere in the store. In addition to taking substantial time and people power to move merchandise on a daily basis, there was often the additional risk of the product breaking. Physically relocating merchandise is no longer necessary with the advent of reasonably priced, asset-specific sensors. These sensors can be set to trigger an alarm when a product has been moved for a pre-determined number or seconds or tilted a pre-determined number of degrees. Sensors are discreet and only need to be configured once.
Accessing your security system used to be next to impossible. Retailers could only view the live feed from surveillance cameras if they were on-site, and, even then, it required equipment that was out of the price range of most small and medium-sized business owners. Even making the simplest change to a security system could be as complicated as setting it up in the first place. Today, independents can access their security systems from mobile devices via an application. Many security providers offer live surveillance camera feeds on an on-demand basis and will automatically send you video images if the alarm is activated.
In addition, many security companies offer small business friendly packages that monitor movement around sensitive areas and materials, including computer hard drives, at reasonable prices. The system administrator will be alerted if an unauthorized person trys to access prohibited documents online, and DVR playback allows business owners to review suspicious offline activity and address issues before they get out of hand.
Retail crimes not only place you, your employees and shoppers in harm’s way, but they also greatly decrease your profits and can destroy a company. As all business owners spend the next few months determining how their companies can achieve long-term viability, they must not forget that without a product, there is no business to grow.