A Simpler, Less Intrusive Buying Experience:
Loss Prevention Devices for High End Clothes and Accessories
New options prevent theft of designer apparel and accessories, while enabling
hands-on interaction with less clutter
For retailers of high-end apparel and accessories such as purses, clutches, belts, furs, designer gowns, leather jackets, shoes, watches and jewelry, the customer’s retail experience can be just as important as loss prevention. Often the look and feel of the product on display in store, including the customer’s ability to consider how the item complements one’s personal style, can be crucial in the purchasing decision.
While intrusive loss prevention devices cannot be a barrier to consumers during the sales process, retailers cannot let expensive merchandise “walk out the door” due to shoplifting or employee theft. According to the 2016 National Retail Security Survey (NRSS), retailer inventory shrinkage accounted for 1.38 percent of sales – up $1.2 billion from the previous year. In addition, 47 percent of retailers surveyed reported increases in overall inventory shrinkage.
When some high-end items like designer handbags can cost $2,000 each or more, protecting against “grab and run” theft is critical. A single incident that can take only a few minutes can cost a retailer tens of thousands of dollars as an entire rack of merchandise is swept into a bag and out of the store.
The ideal way to display such designer merchandise is with innovative mechanical or electronic loss prevention devices, which may involve cords, sensors, an alarm console and related equipment. With online competition crimping margins and reducing brick-and-mortar retail staffing today, using effective theft deterrent devices is even more important. Now a greater array of options is allowing retailers to prevent theft and showcase merchandise more naturally with less intrusion.
Enhancing Product Presentation and Security
Any loss prevention device – whether a mechanical tether, alarm console or sensor – should not overshadow the product, or be cumbersome or difficult to maintain by employees. To meet this need, innovators in the industry offer a variety of loss prevention devices that secure designer products with minimal visual clutter or intrusiveness.
In the case of a haute couture handbag, for instance, it is essential for shopper to see for herself how it feels on the shoulder, how it rests against the hip, as well as how it opens and how much storage it offers. Yet protecting against grab and run theft is equally important and must not compromise the in-store purchase experience.
Against such theft, companies like Se-Kure Controls, a Franklin Park, Illinois-based manufacturer of retail product security devices, offer small, retractable, lockable cords that allow customers to examine handbags up close. When the shopper returns the handbag, the cord retracts to reduce visual distraction and keep the display area organized.
The company uses a similar approach to prevent the theft of designer belts, which can cost hundreds of dollars each, with a belt lock security device. This allows hands on inspection of the belts but prevents thieves from pilfering many at once, as is the risk using a typical peg hook display.
For securely showcasing luxury apparel and accessories in a way that optimizes customer-product interactivity, a growing number of retailers are also turning to electronic merchandise display security systems.
“Retailers that want to display apparel or accessories have a range of more aesthetic, easier to use options with different sensors and alarms today,” says John Mangiameli, Se-Kure Controls Executive Vice President. “Sensors can clamp, or magnetically close for more delicate materials like silk or mink that a retailer wouldn’t want to put a pin through.”
According to Mangiameli, tilt alarms, brick-like devices that typically detect either horizontal or vertical motion, can be attached to any item to alert employees to any unauthorized movement. “Horizontal tilt alarms, for instance, can be used on countertop jewelry spinners to allow them to be spun, but not picked up and moved without sounding the alarm horn,” he says.
According to Mangiameli, some advanced electronic alarm systems are even designed to protect up to 20 garments at once. These can fit on wall, t-stand, waterfall and rounder displays while improving security, simplifying operation, and still allowing the customer to pick up and try on the garment.
One such system operates with battery life of up to 16 months, and if the alarm is triggered, battery power can sustain a continuous alarm for almost seven days. For greater security, it incorporates a “visual memory” that keeps the system’s LEDs flashing until the tampered sensor is identified and corrected. It also has a “Where-It’s-At” option that flashes a light at the top of the display to help employees locate the source of the alarm.
For high-end items like designer watches or smaller collections that require a display case, security systems are also available that protect up to twelve doors. For instance, with Se-Kure Controls Kontrol Card system for display cases, electronic locks are opened using RFID cards, eliminating the need for traditional locks and keys and if unauthorized access occurs, the alarm horn sounds. The system can be used for display cabinets, storage cabinets and drawers.
With luxury fashion retailers facing greater competition from e-commerce, vendors that enhance the hands on buying experience of their customers, while minimizing theft with more aesthetic loss prevention devices, will gain a competitive edge.
For more info, call 800-250-9260 toll free; fax: 847-288-9999; email firstname.lastname@example.org; visit www.se-kure.com; write to Se-Kure Controls, Inc., 3714 Runge St., Franklin Park, IL 60131, USA.