How to Prevent Theft in Your Smoke/Vape Shop

by Julianne Bautista

How to Prevent Theft in Your Smoke/Vape Shop

Table of Contents

This year is going to be all about protecting your peace—as a smoke shop owner, it’s also all about protecting your piece. Running a smoke shop or vape business involves preventing theft and putting a stop to losing sales. Theft can majorly impact your business and create an unsafe environment for your customers and staff. In this Smoke Shop Blog, learn valuable strategies to help safeguard your shop from theft.

According to an article titled “How Can I Avoid Thefts in My Stores?” by John Lofstock of CStoreDecisions, the National Retail Federation’s survey in 2020 found that 69% of retailers have admitted that shoplifting crime has gone up in the previous year. Loftstock states, “Retailer store owners need to implement tips for shoplifting prevention, especially given that organized retail crime costs retailers more than $700,000 for every $1 billion in sales on average.” In other words, it's crucial for store owners to learn how to prevent theft and protect their businesses. Here’s what you need to do:

The Importance of Employee Training

First things first, choosing the right employees and trusting them is important to preventing shoplifting actions in your smoke shop. The way to master this is to train your staff the right way, whether it is proper cash handling, inventory management, and/or noticing suspicious customer behavior. Make sure your staff are aware of the potential risks and regularly reinforce these practices through refresher courses.

Man monitoring security systems on laptop on office table

Implementing Security Measures

You’re going to need to watch every move inside your store! Install security cameras strategically throughout your shop—covering entrances, exits, and high-traffic areas to view every inch of action. It is highly recommended to put cameras that aren’t too obvious to spot. You might also want to think about putting in an alarm system to make security even better, especially after hours when your store is dark and closed.

Displaying Shoplifting Signs

Based on a retail study by the Loss Prevention Research Council, placing signs up that show you are watching for shoplifters can make a massive difference in preventing theft. The research revealed that over 50% of individuals who have engaged in shoplifting would rather choose to either go to another store or refrain from stealing altogether if they were aware of being under surveillance. Therefore, a simple sign can help you a long way! Another great tactic is to showcase printed images captured by your security cameras of previous thieves on your walls.

Secure At-Risk Products

You should remember where everything is placed in your store. Make sure to limit access to valuable items, such as glass pipes and expensive vaporizers, and use locking display cases for high-value products. A popular go-to product recently are disposable vapes—these products should be placed against your wall and behind your counter. It is recommended to have certain areas in your smoke shop where only employees can enter.

CCTV camera monitoring store shelves

Develop Relationships with Local Authorities

If things get out of hand, establishing connections with local law enforcement agencies is always a good idea. In general, have them visit your shop, discuss security concerns, and provide recommendations for improving safety. In case of an incident, having a positive relationship with local authorities can expedite their response. Let everyone who enters your store space that your store is not an easy target. Involving law enforcement helps spread the word and deters potential thieves.

Beware of Peak Shoplifting Times

Yes, there is a specific time and date when it comes to stealing. It’s known most shoplifters like to take action when the store is at its busiest. Corresponding to the Center for Problem-Oriented Policing, shoplifting incidents tend to rise from Wednesday to Saturday. Shoplifters also tend to be more active before Christmas, Easter, and summertime.

The Idea of Encouraging Vigilance

Let your staff be vigilant and always have them keep a sharp eye on everything. It is best to train your staff to be observant of customers who may seem unsure. Tell your employees that it is best to report any suspicious behavior right away. Consider fulfilling a reward system to motivate employees to actively prevent theft.

Man looking shady putting store product into jacket pocket

An Overview on Preventing Theft

Keep your business safe at all times—you will always need to take charge to prevent theft and shoplifting from your smoke shop. Using strategies like staff training, adding security cameras, securing products, and involving local authorities, you can have a safe environment that satisfies your establishment and customers.

Keep yourself informed about the latest events in the smoke shop industry and gain valuable insights by diving deeper into our Smoke Shop Business Blog. Serving as an invaluable resource, it offers ideas, crucial information, industry trends, and valuable advice to boost the growth and success of your shop. Stay connected and learn with us here at Got Vape Wholesale!

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