Skip to main content

3 Reasons to Stop Using Paper Forms for Retail Data Collection

Mobile technology has significantly transformed many of business processes and retail data collection is not an exception. Yet, many field service-based companies still rely on paper forms to collect retail data because they are not interested in messing with new technologies and time-consuming field reps training.

Although paper forms are considered to be cheap and time-proven tool for retail data capture, it today’s mobile-driven world using paper can cost you much more than that the cost of paper itself. Reduced productivity, increased risk of data errors, and no real-time data access put you at risk of being outdone by more tech-savvy competitors, who use mobile data collection tools with analytic capabilities to develop their marketing strategies. 

There are many advantages that mobile data collection has over paper forms. For field reps, who are permanently on the go, having mobile tools for paperless data collection means making their job less manual and more rewarding. For field team managers, real-time access to corporate data from anywhere and streamlined data workflow are the unique opportunities to manage data collection processes in the most efficient manner. Here are just a few reasons why mobile data capture is the better way. Hope you’ll find your own after finishing this post.
  1. Organize your data in one place – When you don’t have to switch constantly between a bunch of applications and tools, you can work more efficiently. Mobile data collection allows managing data collection processes in one comprehensive system making it easy to access, manage, analyze, transfer and share retail data. To find the right place for your corporate data, look for data collection solutions, which allow managing all the information on customers and products, monitoring of field reps, and field sales operations, organizing retail auditing, merchandising and field marketing activities, and analyzing various types of data to create automatic reports. The more comprehensive data collection solution you have, the more time you can save, when there is no need to constantly move from one data storage system to another.
  2. Get retail data faster – Mobile access to data both for office managers and for field reps and instant reporting capabilities provide real-time data exchange between the office and the field. With mobile data collection solution you retail database is always up-to-date and nobody has to spend hours re-entering manually the data collected by field reps. Mobile data collection allows fast capture data due to automated data entry, barcode scanning, drop down lists, automatic timing and one-click photo reports.
  3. Reduce data-entry mistakes and eliminate fraud – Switching to a mobile app for retail data collection reduces the number of errors costly for your business. Mobile data collection forms consist of required fields required designed in a way field reps submit important information without fail. When they skip any action to be performed, the task is incomplete and they won’t be able to complete the visit and report back. All the data collected by field reps at retail locations, including photos is time-stamped and GPS-confirmed, so the managers know for sure where data collection tasks were performed and how long it took to perform each visit.
VisitBasis data collection software allows creating task templates for everything that needs to be checked and helps you to fully eliminate the chaos of paper forms, Excel spreadsheets and emails, providing a comprehensive field service management solution in one application.

Ready to try the benefits of paperless data collection? Sign up today at for a free trial, or book a free online demo to see how it works.


Popular posts from this blog

Implementing Sustainable Merchandising

In the factory-to-customer cycle, merchandising is one of the most wasteful processes. From the fuel consumed by field reps to the amount of paper used in traditional audits and surveys, on top of promotional and seasonal displays, it is easy to see why merchandising is considered “eco-unfriendly”. A field merchandising app can make a world of difference when it comes to sustainability. By adopting a field merchandising app, CPG and FMCG businesses can expect the following: Virtually eliminate the use of paper in in-store activities such as planogram checks, audits, surveys, and orders, among others. A state-of-the-art field merchandising app will also allow for instant access to the data collected, slashing the time and cost spent on data entry. Considerable savings in rep travel time and fuel thanks to the route optimization functions of field merchandising apps that automatically calculate the shortest store rounds. A cross-platform field merchandising app will all

Cloud for Retail Execution: Make Away with Data Storage Costs

Why Go Paperless? In order to store 2 million paper documents, an organization can expect to spend between $40,000 and $60,000 on filing cabinets alone. Those same files could fit on fewer than ten CD-ROMs (Business Guide to Paper Reduction) . If we assume that a filing cabinet uses from 6 to 20 square feet of space and the office space costs $23 per square foot , the space for a one filing cabinet will cost a company $1656– 5520 per year .   How to Go Paperless? When you choose paperless data collection your data storage costs can be significantly reduced or even brought to zero. Digital data collected using mobile forms require much less space than paper sheets and therefore cost less money. With the development of mobile technology you don’t need CDs or any other data carriers to store and access your data. More and more companies opt for Cloud storage. The price of Cloud storage starts at $0.01 GB per month and the average number of MS Word pages per GB is 64782.

Solving Information Loss in Merchandising Once and For All

Information loss used to be an inevitable consequence of retail merchandising. With many field reps performing a number of tasks on each one of the stores in their individual territories, it is easy to see how the amount of data collected on the field grows exponentially and is, therefore, increasingly difficult to handle and more subject to information loss. Mobile merchandising software  is the ideal solution to information loss in retail merchandising. When businesses implement a mobile merchandising software solution, they prevent information loss in the following stages of data processing: Data collection It is easy to see how information can get lost in traditional pen-and-paper merchandising. With mobile merchandising software, field reps perform tasks such as filling out forms and taking pictures in their mobile devices, leading to less misunderstanding and mix-ups. Data transcription With mobile merchandising software, there is no data transcription. The information goe