One of my favorite online people, Tim Arthur, posted about his recent visit to Walmart. Basically he went in and bought some poster board. The poster board wasn't put into a bag because of the size. He was stopped on his way out by the Greeter. She asked him to show her his receipt.
And this is when you really should go and read the post yourself, before going any further. I promise it's a short post.
I started to leave a comment, but my comment ended up looking like a blog post all on its own. So here's my reply to his post. I told you, you should've read his post first. Go and come back, if you haven't read it yet. I'm not going anywhere.
If they don't have in place, a policy allowing them to request your receipt going out the door, then they shouldn't have require proof of purchase for any item returned for a cash refund, right?
If I were a shoplifter, I would totally have your back on this one. I would be behind you 100%.
If I were a shoplifter, I would suggest we tell Sams and Costco (neither of which offer bags for groceries) to stop making everyone show their receipts on their way out the door.
At the Exit doors:
Just take my word for it – I purchased everything in the cart – no need for you to see my receipt.
At the Customer Service Desk:
Yep. I bought that toaster oven here two days ago. I don't have a receipt, because [insert excuse here] the cashier didn't give me one. But give me a cash refund for it anyway.
Shoplifters are sneaky, and most aren't rookies. Statistics show that habitual shoplifters steal an average of 1.6 times per week, and they're only caught once out of every 48 times they do.
It's unfortunate that there is such a thing as loss prevention. Even with cameras, store security, and yes…Greeters checking receipts at the door, theft is a serious problem. Take a look at some more statistics:
- More than $13 billion worth of goods are stolen from retailers each year. That's more than $35 million per day.
- There are approximately 27 million shoplifters (or 1 in 11 people) in our nation today.
- Shoplifting affects more than the offender. It overburdens the police and the courts, adds to a store's security expenses, costs consumers more for goods, costs communities lost dollars in sales taxes and hurts children and families.
- Shoplifters steal from all types of stores including department stores, specialty shops, supermarkets, drug stores, discounters, music stores, convenience stores and thrift shops.
- Many shoplifters buy and steal merchandise in the same visit. Shoplifters commonly steal from $2 to $200 per incident depending upon the type of store and item(s) chosen.
[Note to self: Someone really needs to make an infographic with these stats]
I know there are many people feel the same about being asked for proof of purchase and understandably so. It's inconvenient. But think about those statistics. It's insane! Imagine the savings that would be passed down to all of us if theft wasn't a problem at all.
I understand having to show your receipt to someone upon exiting can be a little annoying. Unfortunately, it's a small, but neccessary inconvenience. The Greeter was doing you and all Walmart shoppers a great service.
[Image via Svadilfari]
 Information and statistics provided by the National Association for Shoplifting Prevention (NASP) a nonprofit organization providing research-based shoplifting prevention initiatives including education, prevention, justice and rehabilitation programs. Contact NASP: Click here to email us