In the last few years, retailers have faced several facts that have left them wondering if they should go the way of the internet. Online shopping has taken a great number of customers away from the brick and mortar retailer. Retailers are having to spend more and more money on loss prevention specialists and teams. Retailers are also finding it necessary to look for new ways to advertise. Drawing a customer has become increasingly challenging. Giving them a pleasant shopping experience to ensure that they keep returning is also a challenge. Face recognition technology can help. Let’s take a look at face recognition software and its importance to retailers.
Retail Stores Need Better Security
Retailers all over the world are facing security issues that only seem to be getting worse, according to Retail Touch Points. Despite the fact that security and loss prevention teams are in place, shoplifters and those who commit product return fraud are getting the upper hand and costing retailers millions of dollars over time. And those losses are sadly passed down to the customer. Smart retail store owners are looking at ways that face recognition can help cut down these risks to inventory, profits, customers, and employees.
Catching the Thief is Not Enough
Most retail stores already have security cameras in place to record customers and employees as they shop and work. These cameras can be useful in the event that something is stolen because police can go back after the fact and prove who committed the crime – if the person is caught. In many cases, sadly, the thief is not caught, however, and in most cases, the merchandise is never recovered.
Face Recognition Can Greatly Improve Security
This solution only goes to work once the crime has been committed. By adding facial recognition, retailers could prevent the crime from ever being committed. Cameras which are connected to face recognition software would begin scanning a person’s face the moment that they enter the store. Their face would automatically be compared to those in a database of known shoplifters, thieves, disgruntled ex-employees, etc. If a threatening person entered the store personnel would be alerted to either watch the person carefully, escort them out of the door, or call the police, depending on the threat level.
Face Recognition Software Can Also Help Combat Return Fraud
Along with shoplifting, return fraud is another common way that thieves are costing retailers money. A person will shoplift an item, and then return it to the store as a return. In stores where a receipt is not needed to return an item, the shoplifter can actually get money back for an item that they stole. If face detection technology had been monitoring the person when they stole the item, even if the loss prevention team did not catch them at the time that the item was stolen, the team could be alerted when the person tried to return the item.
Security is just one way that facial recognition is helping store owners. In next week’s article, we will look deeper into face recognition and its importance to retailers.