In this competitive world, establishing a small profitable business is a difficult mission. Unlawful activities have considerably increased which gives a tough time, especially for small entities, to survive in the competitive market. Apparel retail businesses have increased on a large scale, and so has the need for surveillance.
Shoplifting negatively impacts the profitability and smooth running of a business and is a common problem faced by retail companies. The apparel retail stores buy garments from the manufacturers or wholesalers and then sell it to the end users. The profit earned by them is the difference between the buying cost and the selling rate. However, if there is a loss incurred due to shoplifting or other thefts or errors, it becomes difficult for the retailers to continue the business as they have liability to pay towards the cost incurred for setting the business. Expenses like rent, wages to employees, security and other miscellaneous expenses have to been borne by the retailer whether or not they earn profit.
According to the 2009 study conducted by the National Retail Federation, about 35% of shrinkage was due to shoplifting and the total amount of shrinkage was 1.44% of total retail sales. 'Shrinkage' means the difference between the amount of inventory a retailer had and the actual stock he has in the store.
The 'Associated Press' reported that Wal-mart stores in New York had lost about $3billion a year due to thefts. According to the annual global retail theft barometer report published by the Centre for Retail Research (CRR) in 2009, it was found that there was rise in shrink in all the regions surveyed. The highest increase was in North America with 8.1%. The increase in Middle East Africa was 7.5% and Europe was 4.7%. Moreover, the highest shrinkage losses were found in apparel and tailored clothing with 3.64% of profits, accessories being 3.85% of profits.
Apparel stores have to bear huge losses due to theft all over the world. It is not easy to quantify how much lose has incurred due to shoplifting. Stores lose profit for reasons other than shoplifting like theft by employees, vendors, delivery staff, storehouse keepers, etc. Hence nowadays, for retailers it has become mandatory to use accurate EAS (Electronic Article Surveillance) systems. Apparel retailers have realized that they need to increase surveillance to get rid of shoplifting.
The top retailers all over the world now use powerful EAS systems to curb shoplifting, organized theft. At the same time, making sure that it is simple for the employees to use it. EAS is a technological method to fight against shoplifting from retail shops, libraries and other stores where commodities are kept on display. Sensor tags or labels are fixed to the products on sale. A detection system like alarm is put up at the exit of the store.