Australian Newsagency Blog

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Advice on security cameras for newsagents

Mark Fletcher
December 14th, 2018 · 1 Comment

I heard of a newsagent being ripped off recently, paying more than $12,000 for a mediocre security system for their business that is not ideal for the business.

Here is my advice on buying security cameras:

Much has changed in security camera technology over recent years. Whereas in the past best-practice advice was to install a retail specific security system connected to your POS software, that is no longer recommended.

Many domestic camera solutions are better and more cost effective for small business retailers than those pitched specifically at retail businesses.

DVR (the device that records the video) technology is changing rapidly, making it challenging for integrated systems to keep up.

The connection to your POS software is not important, especially when you consider the cost of systems that offer such a connection.

Myadvice is that you start by considering what you want. Usually, the most important need is a record of what went on in-store – so you can see who did what and when and from anywhere including outside the business.

While security will be a key need, cameras will also enable you to track shopper traffic and this this you can make product placement decisions that drive better business outcomes.

Here is what I suggest you cover with cameras:

  1. Shop entrance. See the faces of those entering.
  2. Shop exit. See the faces of those leaving.
  3. The counter. See who presents at the counter and what the purchase. Plus see staff behaviour at the counter.
  4. Shop floor. Do not go overboard. Better quality cameras will cover more areas and allow zooming.
  5. Rear entrance, if you have one.
  6. Back room, if you have one.

As for cameras, don’t go cheap. Resolution o is key. Buy units that you can control remotely. Wireless is best – if you have good stable in-store Wi-Fi. Wi-Fi means you can save on wiring and easily move the cameras as the needs of the business change – but you still need power. Consider how you want night video to be handled.

When it comes to the DVR, it may be more cost effective to get two. It all depends on the prices available at the time. Two smaller units for 6 to 8 cameras may be cheaper than a bigger unit serving 8 cameras.

Install a monitor in-store to show you are recording.

If you are not sure what you want to do, start with two to four cameras in prime locations. This could cost under $1,000.


Category: Newsagency management · theft

1 response so far ↓

  • 1 Glenn // Dec 14, 2018 at 10:05 PM

    One word of warning I got from our security consultant was to be very wary of grey imports. Apparently in China there has to be access for “government officials” to all CCTV systems and therefore there are backdoors into most of the systems out of China via the “grey” channel.

    The same brand purchased via the Australian import channel had these backdoors closed. He told of instances where business networks had been hacked via their security systems. Sadly the grey imports are much cheaper and therefore what lots of people go for without realising the risks.

    The owner of this security company has been a good friend of mine for 20 years and in the security industry a lot longer than that, so I have no reason to suspect that it is just BS to get me to buy the more expensive version.

    If nothing else, do some research before buying.


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