The growth of E-commerce has brought about the emergence of a new range of risks that can negatively impact upon retail profitability – a broadening of the retail landscape of loss, requiring those tasked with its management to develop new knowledge, skills, and methods of control.
While there is certainly some overlap with the types of risks found in Bricks and Mortar stores, it is also becoming evident that E-commerce presents some unique challenges and indeed opportunities when it comes to managing those risks.
For instance, the scale of E-commerce and the number of potential bad actors is profoundly different compared with traditional forms of retailing – limitations imposed by geographical proximity and store ‘opening times’ no longer apply – offenders can ‘access’ a retail business both nationally and increasingly internationally, 24/7, significantly increasing the size of the potential offender ‘pool’.
In addition, the nature of the Internet environment and capacity to share information quickly and widely can expose retail businesses – knowledge about scams and loopholes can spread fast, generating significant financial vulnerabilities. For instance, while one or two local thieves may share knowledge about the temporary absence of say a security guard in a local store, offering opportunities for shop theft, the E-commerce equivalent could be the disclosure of a pricing loophole/mistake via social media, which is then read and acted upon by tens, possibly hundreds of thousands of people.
In March 2023, ECR published a typology of ecommerce loss, identifying over 30 different ways losses can be incurred through ecommerce operations. This Innovation Challenge seeks to find news approaches, technologies and techniques that can help monitor, prevent and recover losses, adding incremental profit to the bottom line.
The timeline for the challenge is as follows:
If you would like to be one of our judges, please drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you would like to see ten of the hottest startups pitch online, please register for the Showcase Finale on October 28th
Loss Prevention Leaders Meeting - Going Digital and Beyond October 18th & 19th
Aimee Charlton announced as new ECR Retail Loss board member