Small Business Brief

Safety & Loss Prevention

Secure Your Business: 7 Tips for Preventing Break-Ins

Businesses of any size can experience a break-in, but they’re especially common among small businesses. In fact, nearly 9 percent of businesses experience a break-in each year.

What are you doing to keep your business safe? 

If you haven’t taken steps to secure your business and stop break-ins from happening, now is the time to start.

Not sure where to begin? Keep reading. Listed below are seven great tips on preventing break-ins and keeping your business safe.

1. Install an Alarm System

An alarm system is one of the best tools you can invest in if you want to keep your business safe. This is especially true if you spring for an alarm system that also includes video monitoring.

There are tons of different alarm systems you can purchase, and many of them are quite affordable, so there’s no reason not to purchase on for your business.

Alarms are highly versatile, too. You can use them to protect the perimeter of your business and detect motion or to guard specific, high-value items like your safe.

As a minimum precaution, you ought to use an alarm to protect your safe. That way, if someone tries to break in or steal it, the authorities will be alerted immediately.

2. Be Strategic About Your Inventory Placement

As a small business owner, you know that your inventory matters. You also know that the way you arrange it matters.

Inventory placement has to do with a lot more than just sales, though. Proper inventory placement can also deter burglars. 

Make sure that items that might tempt a burglar are kept in a safe place.

Small items like jewelry or sunglasses might be easy to slip into a bag or coat pocket if they’re displayed in the middle of the store. Try keeping them in a display case or on a rack located close to the checkout counter instead.

3. Replace the Glass in Your Windows

Take a look at your windows and consider how easy it might be for a burglar to break the glass. Could they do it with just a quick strike or two? If so, you may want to consider replacing the glass with something a bit more durable.

Invest in tempered glass or laminated glass for your windows. These types of glass require several strikes before they will break.

If you use either type of glass in your windows, it will make it much harder for a burglar to pull off a typical smash-and-grab job. They’ll make a lot of noise and will likely attract a lot of attention before they can actually get away with anything.

4. Keep Your Safe Near the Front of the Store

At first, it might seem like a good idea to keep your safe at the back of the store. In reality, though, it’s actually safer to store it toward the front of the store. This is especially true if you don’t have any kind of alarm system protecting your safe.

If the safe is kept toward the front of the store, there’s a better chance that someone will notice suspicious activity (i.e., someone trying to steal it) when they’re walking by the store. 

Bolting your safe to the floor is also a good idea. It helps to deter burglars who might case your store during the day.

5. Build a Wall (or a Fence)

If you have a stand-alone business that is not part of a large strip of stores, you might want to consider putting up a wall or building a fence around it.

There are lots of businesses, like this company, that specialize in building secure fences for businesses that want to protect themselves from burglars.

There are lots of benefits that come from having a fence around your business. They allow you to have control over who accesses your building, and they are highly durable, so you won’t have to worry about replacing them every few years.

When they’re designed well, walls and fences can also be very aesthetically pleasing.

There are lots of reasons to consider a fence or a wall for your business. Just keep in mind, though, that you can’t make Mexico pay for it.

6. Keep the Interior and Exterior Well-Lit

Good lighting can make a big difference when it comes to preventing break-ins. What burglar wants to risk being seen?

In order to see the greatest benefits from your security lights, make sure both the interior and exterior of your business are well-lit.

Install lights in areas that might not be in plain view, too. 

Be sure to install your lights inside bulb cages so they cannot be broken easily. And, maintain your lights and replacing them as they burn out. After all, there’s no point in having security lights if they’re never working properly.

7. Get to Know Your Neighbors

Finally, if possible, get to know the people who run other businesses in your area.

If you have a good relationship with these other business owners, they might be more inclined to look out for your business when you close down for the day.

You might even want to consider setting up some kind of community watch program, similar to a neighborhood watch program. This will help to ensure everyone is doing their part looking out for suspicious activity.

If a particular business owner is hesitant to take part in such a program, remind them that everyone benefits from burglary prevention. After all, if one store experiences a break-in, that means other stores in the area might also be vulnerable.

There’s More to Security Than Just Preventing Break-ins

If you take these steps for preventing break-ins, your business will be totally safe, right? Not necessarily. 

These security tips are important for preventing physical break-ins to your business. But, your business could still be at risk of online threats and data breaches. 

Want to learn how to keep your business safe from these kinds of issues? We’ve got resources to help.

Check out the security archives of our blog today for all kinds of helpful articles on preventing theft, monitoring your website, protecting yourself from hackers, and more.