With the rise in online shopping the retail market is more competitive than ever before. As such attracting and engaging with shoppers is crucial for retailers to ensure that every shopping experience is a positive one. Shopping centres remain an important part of the retail experience for consumers, offering the right environment for shoppers to spend time and money.
For centre managers, the task of encouraging more shoppers to their centre is key to keeping retail stores busy and prosperous. Safer shopping centres will be more successful in attracting visitors and retailers will reap the rewards.
Planning your security strategy
Understanding your business aims as a centre manager is important when defining a security strategy for your shopping centre. Utilizing an experienced security consultant who appreciates these aims and has the knowledge and experience to work with you to develop a holistic security plan will help centre managers achieve their goals.
A clever balance of the right security technology with onsite manned security teams will result in a bespoke, subtle but effective security solution that will enhance customer service and provide a secure environment for shoppers and retailers alike.
Smart security technology
With smart use of security technology there are ways that centre managers can enable better decision making to manage shopping centres more efficiently, ensuring an all-round positive shopping experience whilst keeping shopping centres safe.
Most shopping centres will have at the very least a basic CCTV system in place to monitor mall areas and car parks. The use of CCTV has moved beyond just surveillance and now most digital systems will offer analytics as a key feature. With inbuilt technology, video footage that is captured can be analysed in real-time or historically and is very useful in aiding security teams to manage security operations and incidents.
The information from CCTV cameras can also be used to monitor visitor numbers with people counting features and heat maps can be used to determine most/least popular areas in the mall. This data offers invaluable insights to centre managers to aid day-to-day management tasks as well as marketing campaigns and reporting.
Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras can be used in car parking areas for 24 hour surveillance as well as to aid car park management. The technology will read number plates automatically which is extremely useful to manage paid parking areas or to enforce any time limits in place and to manage restricted access.
As with any security solution, it is important to ensure systems are well designed, installed and maintained so that the system works well and is fit for purpose. CCTV systems must also comply with industry regulations and relevant legislation regarding privacy of recorded footage. It’s vital that security staff are fully trained in the operation of security systems and aware of legislation regarding the use of recordings. Regular system user training and refresher training for all staff will ensure staff training is up-to-date.
Safe, secure, successful shopping centres
There are many advantages to using independent security consultants to assist with security planning in shopping centres. A good reliable security system is not just essential for security but will also assist centre managers with decision making to ensure their shopping centres are managed efficiently, offering a safe and secure environment where shoppers will be happy to return frequently to spend time and money in their stores.