Convenience store robberies have increased in recent years, with research showing that these crimes account for 6% of all reported robberies. But just why are convenience stores easy targets for robbery?
Increased robbery and crime rates mean that it’s imperative to prioritize convenience store security and safety. This article will highlight convenience store robbery statistics, how to increase safety for you and your employees, and safety technology you can implement at your store.
Keep your business protected with strategies to improve convenience store safety and security.
Convenience Store Robberies: What Makes Them an Easy Target
Unfortunately, convenience stores have increased chances of getting robbed compared to other retail businesses. A convenience store robbery may happen for many reasons, such as:
- Long hours of operation
- Size of the store
- Amounts of cash on hand
- Poor security measures
- Less staff at certain times
Robberies are traumatizing for employees and bystanders alike. Store robberies can also incur thousands of dollars in damage, potentially leading owners to increase their operating expenses to offset the damages.
Finding ways to help keep your store and employees safe can deter future robberies from happening, but it’s important to first understand the extent of what factors may be making gas station crime statistics rise. This can also help you determine what safety measures you can implement.
Convenience Store Location
Location has a large effect on how a convenience store may be the target of a robbery. For example, highly populated areas can expect more foot traffic to their stores, which makes them less likely to be targeted for robberies. In contrast, rural areas may be more of a target due to the decreased chance of witnesses or police getting to the store quickly.
And if you’re wondering how many robberies go unsolved, it’s an astounding 70%. Even if your store is located in a rural area, installing security technology like smart safes and security cameras can give police the evidence they need in case a robbery does occur.
Hours of Operation
The hours of operation of your convenience store may also contribute to overall store robbery rates. Convenience statistics prove that stores that are open for longer periods of time are more likely to be robbed. With longer hours of operation, especially if the store is open for 24 hours, there will naturally be times when the store has less staff on-site, making the chances of someone robbing a store more probable.
The size of the convenience store may have an impact on robbery rates. Smaller stores that are independently owned are at a higher chance of being robbed compared to larger, chain stores or franchises.
Furthermore, the layout of the store can also contribute to robberies. If safes are visible to customers, this may make them more likely to ransack the store. Blind spots, low visibility, and bad lighting can affect robbery statistics as well.
High Amounts of Cash on Hand
Cash handling procedures and how much money is left in the till can also have an effect on someone potentially robbing stores. Installing safety measures like a smart convenience store safe or ensuring less cash is kept on hand can help reduce crime rates.
Look into how much a convenience store makes in a day and then adjust your cash flow to only keep what is necessary on hand.
ICL’s software-first CashSimple™ solution streamlines everything from change orders to tracking deposits.
Impact of Convenience Store Robberies
There are many ways that robberies can affect a convenience store. For example, the psychological effects of being robbed can cause PTSD or other emotional trauma for workers, other customers, and managers as well. Beyond the psychological effects, there can be physical damage to the property and stolen cash. The impacts of a convenience store being robbed include:
- Inventory and Revenue: Depending on what the person stole, your inventory, cash, and revenue may be impacted. This can lead to issues with keeping your store afloat, especially if robberies happen frequently.
- Property Damage: While many robberies consist of the criminal trying to get in and out as quickly as possible, this isn’t always what happens. Frequently during robberies, property damage can be just as costly as the inventory or cash that’s stolen. This can include damage to inventory, broken windows or doors, damaged safes and cash registers, and other areas of the store.
- Employee Safety and Well-Being: Going through a robbery is a traumatic experience, and your employees may not feel safe coming to work for a while. It’s important to put safety measures in place to hopefully prevent any robberies from happening at all. If one does occur, support your employees in any way you can.
- Community: The community can also feel the impact of a robbery. Not only can it put community members on edge and cause them to feel safe, but it can damage community rapport. If a convenience store needs to close temporarily or permanently, it can mean access to a source of supplies or food is cut from the community. All of these risks can impact community members and support which could lead to a loss in revenue.
5 Dangerous Convenience Store Robberies of 2023
The factors mentioned above all make convenience stores more likely targets for robberies. Some important statistics to keep in mind for why this may occur include:
- Convenience stores account for 3% of all violent crimes reported, while gas stations account for 2%
- Convenience stores are the 4th most likely location for violent crime
- Collectively, victims of property crimes suffered over $17.5 billion in 2020
These statistics show just how prevalent robberies and property damage are in convenience stores. Most notably, the below instances are some of the worst-case scenarios for robbery and showcase just how important safety measures are.
West Oakland Store Robbed 4 Times in 3 Months
In Oakland, California, Ahmed Abdullah’s convenience store was robbed four times in just three months. The robbers caused property damage and stole cash, liquor, and even his ATM and safe. While no one was reported as harmed, Abdullah is understandably shaken and fed up by the string of burglaries.
Florida Man Robs 10 Convenience Stores in 3 Days
A man in Florida who robbed 10 convenience stores in just three days earlier this year was finally arrested. No one was harmed during the spree. Each of the stores was robbed in the exact same pattern, making it easier to apprehend the burglar.
Mandatory 50 Years in Prison for Man Convicted of Robbery and More
In Washington, a man robbed multiple convenience stores, and gas stations, and also engaged in carjacking at gunpoint. This left multiple store employees and bystanders traumatized and terrified following the incidents. The man was finally charged with over 50 years for his crimes.
For any business, strategic and effective business cash management is the key to business growth.
Multiple 7/11 Convenience Stores Robbed at Gunpoint on Same Night
In Los Angeles, California, two men robbed several 7/11 convenience stores at gunpoint on the same night. The robbers took cash and cigarettes from each store, and one worker talked about how the store’s later hours may have been a contributing factor to the robberies.
Robberies in 3 States Leads to 22-Year Sentencing
A Georgia man was sentenced to 22 years for his robberies of various convenience stores over three separate states. Each robbery either caused property damage, stolen cash, or trauma to employees, as he held all of them at gunpoint. He was federally charged for his crimes.
How to Improve Security For Employees and Customers
There are multiple ways to help increase security and safety for your convenience store. Some of the best practices to implement include:
- Changing your store’s hours of operation if possible
- Installing smart safe technology
- Investing in security cameras and other safety measures
- Minimize blind spots
- Train employees on best safety practices
These security measures help ensure that you, your employees, and your store are kept safe from potential theft and robberies.
Keep Your Convenience Store Safe and Protected with Help From Integrated Cash Logistics
Integrated Cash Logistics is here to help you keep your store and employees safe with our cash capture technology. Our safes prioritize a single point of contact for all of your needs, and we immediately buy any cash that you put into it. This helps lessen liability on your end and minimizes the amount of cash your store will have on hand at any given time.