In the retail industry, no matter the size of the store, there are a few common concerns: profit, stock management, hiring, firing, managing… But one that everyone deals with and wishes they didn’t is Loss Prevention. Some retail outlets have their own Loss Prevention departments with managers, assistants, agents and more for every store. Some outlets aren’t big enough to do that. So what do you do if your establishment doesn’t have dedicated loss prevention personnel but you want to do what you can to prevent theft? One answer is simple: GET your customers.
So what does it mean to GET your customers? GET is an acronym. It stands for:
Simple, right? It is indeed but it can have a big impact if used correctly by ALL of your employees and management staff.
GREET: Have each of your employees who works at the front register greet each customer who comes through the door OR have an employee working near the front do so if the front register is too busy to do so without being rude to those being rung out. A simple “Good morning,” “Good afternoon,” or “Good evening,” is sufficient. Just a few words directed at that individual, or group thereof, coming through the front door into your establishment.
ENGAGE: While your customers are shopping, we’ve all seen those who look like they’re shopping for something specific… yet they keep wandering from section to section and keep looking to see who’s around or who can see them. Engage them. Approach them and offer assistance in finding whatever they need. You’re just being polite and demonstrating a great customer-service oriented attitude, but you’re also showing them that they’re being seen (if not watched). You’re making them aware that they are being observed closely enough that you or one of your employees noticed they seemed to need help.
THANK: As the customers are finishing up their purchases and settling their bill or if they’re leaving the store without having made a purchase, saying “Thank you. Please come again,” is a very polite and easy way to let them know:
- You genuinely appreciate their business and will appreciate it when they come back, and
- You see them leaving (if they haven’t made a purchase), just like you saw them come in and the combined message is that you’ll notice them the next time they come through the door.
Such an approach seems to basic… so simple… but it can have a big impact on your loss, or more specifically in making sure it’s reduced. It is easy to teach, reasonably easy to implement and makes for the appearance of great customer service. How many loss prevention strategies can accomplish so many things at once? With zero attached cost?
So have that talk with your employees if you’re a small operation. Have it with your Loss Prevention personnel if you’re a larger operation. Make sure that everyone who works in your store G.E.T.s your customers. It will help you reduce theft and increase customer service experience.