Ensuring the Christmas period brings retailers good tidings

You may have recently read the news that retailers in the UK are expected to lose £1 billion over the Christmas period, as a result of shoplifting, dishonest employees and vendor distribution losses.

Clearly, that’s a bad situation for retailers, but it’s also bad news for honest shoppers across the country, with research indicating that the losses incurred over this period could add an extra £38.09 to each UK family’s shopping bill.

The study, which was released by the Centre for Retail Research and funded by Checkpoint Systems, also examined the wide range of product categories that are most likely to be stolen, which include alcohol, women’s clothing, fashion accessories, toys, perfume, health and beauty packs, confectionery, toiletries, and watches and jewellery.

With such a wide range of products being targeted by thieves and such significant financial losses as a result, these latest statistics underline the importance of advanced security solutions tailored to different products and packaging.

For instance, moderately priced jewellery, costing between £15 and £150, has consistently been categorised as a high-theft item. Historically, thieves have removed security tags on these items simply by separating the jewellery from its packaging – a vulnerability that has been addressed by a new type of tag that attaches to both the jewellery and the pack.

Similarly, solutions have been developed specifically for small cosmetics items, such as nail varnish and lipstick. For these products, smaller and clear anti-theft labels exist, meaning expensive branding and important allergy warnings are less likely to be obstructed. Thanks to the latest advancements, these smaller labels still continue to offer retailers an excellent detection rate.

Finally, labelling application developments are offering real benefits to retailers. Source tagging, for instance, which involves tagging products during the manufacturing process, ensures items arrive ready to be displayed safely on the shelf.

This means staff are free to concentrate on selling items – and to detect thieves – rather than have to spend time applying security tags, which could prove particularly burdensome over the busy Christmas period.  

The Centre for Retail Research report shows that the festive period can prove challenging to retailers, but with the availability of advanced technology to tackle crime, there can still be cause for Christmas cheer.