Friday, November 3, 2017

How to Speed up Store Audit Checklist Reports

Store audits are a must-have in any retail business. Many aspects of the store might have to be checked on a regular basis, from merchandising to adherence to corporate standards and safety, so it is mandatory for management to have an efficient auditing system in place.

However, the old pen-and-paper store audit checklist way of performing inspections has many shortfalls. First, it generates a huge amount of paperwork that has then to be transcribed so the data can be properly analyzed. Also, the transcription process itself is normally far from smooth, being extremely time-demanding and error-prone – especially when we consider any hand-written notes. Finally, access to historical data can be challenging.

While the inefficiency of traditional store audit checklists is the main reason for the success of retail audit software packages, their reporting capabilities are why their use have become so quickly widespread.

Why? Because retail audit software allows for real-time audit reporting: as soon as an audit is complete in the auditors mobile device, the captured data will be available for reporting and analyzing. Moreover, store audit checklists can be customized to fit the individual business needs, and can be as short or as extensive as needed, without the size constraints imposed by paper and by data transcription.

VisitBasis retail audit software provides more than streamlined reporting. It is a complete system for creating custom store audit checklists with various multiple data formats, from free text to single/multiple choice, photos and even signatures. VisitBasis also allows managers to GPS verify the locations where the audits were performed, as well as setup follow-up audits directly from photo reports.

Interested in learning more? Schedule a demo or sign up for a free trial!


Monday, October 2, 2017

How Software Used in Merchandising is Transforming Supermarkets

Supermarkets in general tend to reflect the customer base they serve. From store layout to product offerings, there is a great deal of customization when it comes to chain, regional, and even local parameters and preferences.

A lot of transformation, though, is going on in supermarkets these days, and many causes of such transformation can be traced to software used in merchandising.

While there is pressure for customization from the parameters and preferences listed above, there are also undeniably never-surrendering forces advocating for increased standardization. Standardization in retail decreases CPG development, production, shipment, and marketing costs, among others, and with software used in merchandising, there can be more centralized oversight of in-store activities.

Standardization should not be seen as a total elimination of customization, though. In reality, some standard elements in supermarkets can further reinforce and tailor strategies for customization, and retail audit software used in merchandising is the ideal tool to track these elements, that include:
  • Promotions
  • Product availability
  • Product placement throughout stores
  • Planogram compliance
  • Brand consistency
  • Package integrity
  • Safety and cleanliness
  • Seasonal displays
  • Competitor strategies
  • Others

VisitBasis is a comprehensive retail audit software used in merchandising businesses of all sizes. VisitBasis allows creating customized task templates for everything that needs to be checked at the retail location, providing a budget-friendly and easy-to-use system that helps management have full oversight of retail audits at the point-of-sale.

Sign up today at www.visitbasis.com for a free trial, or book a free online demo to see how it works.



Thursday, September 28, 2017

Retail Planogram Compliance Checks Made Easier

The information generated by auditing merchandising in many stores grows exponentially with every SKU added to the product mix. Therefore, retail planogram compliance checks tend to overwhelm category and merchandising managers with data.

But mobile technology has brought merchandising software solutions that make it much easier to plan and manage retail planogram compliance checks.

With a mobile merchandising solution, smartphones and tablets not only replace the old pen-and-paper method – virtually eliminating cumbersome data transcription – but also become de-facto merchandising auditing tools that provide managers real time access to retail planogram compliance check results.

The quality of information captured with mobile devices is also more relevant than on pen-and-paper: Pictures naturally provide a much more palpable view of store shelves, for instance, than any description could ever do.

VisitBasis is a mobile merchandising software that make retail planogram compliance checks a breeze. It provides managers an easy-to-use setup and management interface that allows them to:
  • Create custom audit forms and checklists,
  • automatically set mandatory tasks for each location,
  • customize must-stock-lists by store or chain,
  • track in real time the location and activities of field reps,
  • run visit reports as soon as the visits are finished.
See how VisitBasis can take your retail planogram compliance checks to the next level: Sign up today for a free trial at www.visitbasis.com.



Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Eliminate Data Transcription with a Retail Store Audit App

Retail store audits are considered a necessary evil for CPG companies. While they provide priceless information on product availability and presentation, the amount of data generated by many reps visiting several stores can be overwhelming when it comes to transcribing and analyzing.

Mobile technology has brought relief to merchandising manager: With a retail store audit app, field reps and auditors can fill in forms and checklists on their mobile devices and the data is then, upon synchronizing, transferred to the Cloud, where it can then be accessed for monitoring and reporting purposes. As we can see, retail store audit app literally eliminates the tedious process of data transcription in merchandising.

Moreover, merchandising and channel managers can benefit in many other ways when implementing a retail store audit app:

  • Speeding up the detection of mission-critical issues
    No time wasted on data transcription means management becomes aware of mission-critical issues – such as out-of-stocks – a lot faster. 
  • In-system reporting and analytics tools
    Most retail store audit app solutions not only offer data collection capabilities, but also data reporting and analysis, allowing management to produce reports as soon as audits are finished.
  • GPS and time stamps
    One of the greatest advantages of retail store audit apps is that all activity is GPS verified and time-stamped. This means that managers can be sure that reps were where and when they were supposed to be, and even pictures will carry that information. 

VisitBasis retail store audit app provides all the tools necessary to setup and execute retail audits, from custom checklists and questionnaires to real-time access to audit data and GPS verification of visits.

Try VisitBasis retail store audit app today! Sign up for a free trial or schedule an online demo.



Monday, July 31, 2017

Solve the Problem of Out-of-Stocks with Retail Store Audit Software

Out-of-stocks are a major problem for any retail business. When a customer comes in looking for a product and it is not in stock, the sale is already lost and, in the process, the customer might convert to another brand or store.

But how to shorten the time between an out-of-stock and replenishment or, better yet, how to prevent out-of-stocks to happen in the first place?

Retail store audit software has become an ally to manufacturers, distributors, and retail in addressing out-of-stocks.

With a retail store audit software, field reps and store employees use a mobile app to record out-of-stocks (or any other mission-critical situation, for that matter) and then the information is readily available in the Cloud for all the appropriate stakeholders to take immediate action.

This means that, with a retail store audit software in place, the time between the detection of an out-of-stock to the order for product replenishment can be virtually shortened to mere seconds.

Not only is retail store audit software instrumental in reacting to out-of-stocks, but it can also help prevent them as well: Since the audit data is stored in the Cloud, it becomes straightforward for brand managers, demand planners, and purchasing to generate historic reports to better plan product shipments and avoid out-of-stocks altogether.

VisitBasis is a complete retail store audit software solution that offers all the elements needed to perform mobile POS audits and surveys in one package, from data collection to reporting.

The VisitBasis retail store audit app is available at Google Play and App Store and can be downloaded for free for an unlimited number of users.

Want to learn more? Schedule an online demo or sign up today for a free trial!



Wednesday, July 19, 2017

The True Cost of Delayed Reporting – or Why Adopt a Retail Audit Application

VisitBasis retail audit application
Performing regular retail audits are a necessity for any business with a retail footprint, from CPG manufacturers monitoring brand compliance to convenience stores verifying safety checklists.

However, due to delayed reporting, red flags in retail audits can sometimes take a long time to reach the appropriate decision-maker and will easily snowball. In addition to internal communications issues – such as when marketing and operations only talk during quarterly meetings – paper-based audits turn the data transcription and reporting process into a nightmare.

Retail audit applications have changed that. With a retail audit application, field reps and auditors can use their mobile devices to fill in checklists and capture information that include photos and signatures.

The information collected by a retail audit application will be stored on the Cloud, where decision makers can then use the application’s reporting interface to constantly monitor the information coming from the field.

Some retail audit applications have even real-time capabilities, allowing management to be aware of mission-critical issues at the retail outlets – such as out-of-stocks or potential liabilities – as soon as the audit is finished.  State-of-the-art retail audit applications will even provide time and GPS verification, authenticating the time and place where the audit was performed.

VisitBasis is a comprehensive retail audit application for businesses of all sizes. VisitBasis allows creating task templates for everything that needs to be monitored at retail outlets as well as instant access and analysis of the information collected, providing a budget-friendly and easy-to-use system that helps you take full control of store audits.

Ready to take full charge of your retail audits? Sign up today at www.visitbasis.com for a free trial, or book a free online demo to see how it works.



Tuesday, June 27, 2017

How Retail Audit Software Improves Brand Appeal

Visuals can make or break a sale in retail: Customers can get turned off by something as simple as sloppy product placement on a shelf or rack, or damaged packaging. Therefore, enforcing brand consistency and merchandising standards is so important in retail.

However, retail auditing needs do change with the seasons and promotions, and checklists must be revised periodically. This is why paper-based merchandisers are a rare find these days – traditional pen-and-paper data collection is not only clumsy, but also difficult to implement and update.

Retail audit software not only allows merchandising and category managers to easily update checklists but also opens the door for more consistent implementation and audit of visual category and brand standards in retail through the following:

  • Increased monitoring – By letting field reps and merchandisers complete checklists on their mobile devices, retail audit software allows much more intensive monitoring.
  • Up-to-date checklists – Retail audit software makes it easy to make mid-season or even mid-campaign checklist adjustments and updates.  
  • Visual accuracy – The option of capturing photos in retail audit software allows merchandising and brand managers to see exactly what is going on at each retail location.
  • Faster reaction time – One of the biggest problems with paper forms and checklists is the amount of time it takes for the information to go from the field rep to management. Some retail audit software solutions grant access to the captured information as soon as the mobile app is synchronized, allowing stakeholders to view and react to mission-critical situations as soon as they are reported.

VisitBasis provides a complete retail audit software solution for product manufacturers, distributors, and agencies alike. VisitBasis allows for easy creation and updating of checklists, as well as straightforward audit scheduling and reporting.

See what VisitBasis can do for your retail audits! Go to www.visitbasis.com and request a free online demo!



Wednesday, May 24, 2017

3 Ways in Which Merchandising Apps Forever Changed Retail

Mobile technology revolutionized many industries and retail is no exception. Retail merchandising apps are now a welcome reality for sales and marketing agencies, retailers, and manufacturers alike, since they streamline an old-fashioned, cumbersome process.

But how did merchandising apps changed retail marketing?

  1. No more clipboard-holding merchandisers roaming the stores
    The age of paper in retail marketing is officially over. Merchandising apps make it easy for reps to perform the in-store activities on mobile devices and therefore are a much better alternative than the messy paper-and-clipboard combination.
  2. Solutions to issues come faster 
    Besides being messy, paper is inefficient. When a rep notices an out-of-stock and marks it on his audit form, he will either have to make a call or send an email to notify the office, or someone will have to read through every single store visit report to find the issue. Additionally, the data collected in those forms needs to be transcribed so sales and marketing managers can have access to it. Merchandising apps automatically make the data available to decision makers in supply chain, sales, and marketing, and allow for a much faster resolution of store-level issues in addition to supplying information critical to strategic decision-making.
  3. More brand consistency
    Merchandising apps allow for better communication with reps. Period. Brand consistency is then improved because, not only can merchandising managers supply detailed documents to retail reps, but the whole system allows for a better feedback from the field, as most merchandising apps provide the capability of capturing photos.
VisitBasis was designed by merchandisers, for merchandisers. It is a complete merchandising app solution that allows you to quickly and easily implement a cost-efficient retail data collection system with no need for technical knowledge.

See for yourself how VisitBasis can help with your organization's merchandising: sign up today!


Monday, April 10, 2017

How Software Increases Accuracy of Retail Store Audits

Retail store audits are unavoidable. Besides allowing management to verify compliance with corporate standards, audits are a part of preventive control record-keeping requirements and also a way to safeguard businesses against lawsuits.

Stores, however, have been slow in automating audits and pen and paper checklists are still the norm, raising several concerns especially when it comes to record-keeping.

Retail store audit software brings many benefits to businesses, among them:

  • AccuracyBy using mobile retail store audit software, store staff can perform activities on smartphones and tablets, allowing them to fill in detailed forms as well capture pictures and signatures. Management can then instantly generate a single audit report document with all the elements included as soon as the activity is finished and data is synchronized.
  • Easier record-keeping
    Retail store audit software allows for easy searching and reporting of previous audits, making it much easier for managers to locate historical records.
  • Faster resolution of issues
    By implementing a retail store audit software solution and having the right audit checklists, management and corporate can more easily identify specific issues and address them accordingly, without loosing time in data transcription.

VisitBasis retail store audit software makes it easy and straightforward to manage retail audits. VisitBasis runs in the Cloud, assuring that your retail data is accessible to you at any time, from anywhere. It works on common Android and iOS tablets and smartphones, allowing BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) implementation to reduce hardware costs to your company.

VisitBasis retail audit software is extremely easy to deploy – and you can start up completely free! Just register for a free trial at www.visitbasis.com and  download the free VisitBasis app from Google Play or App Store.


Thursday, March 16, 2017

Preventing Losses with Retail Store Audit Software


Profit margins in retail businesses are known to be razor thin. For instance, according to Sageworks, a financial information company, in 2014 US grocery and related merchant wholesalers were within the least profitable industries, with profit margins at only 2.3%.

These razor-thin margins make loss prevention a priority in retail, since the slightest slip has the potential of negatively impacting a store's bottom-line. Therefore, profit preservation must be a continuous part of every retail store day-to-day operations.

Retail store audit software can help retailers avoid losses and maximize profits by allowing managers to create a culture of awareness among all its employees.

By using retail store audit software to implement recurring inspections, not only is store management able to identify discrepancies in hard parameters, such as shelf inventory numbers, but also to generate regular reports on such inspections and then more quickly spot trends. This more agile reporting provided by retail store audit software - in addition to automatic notifications provided by some solutions - makes it easier for managers to pinpoint areas of the store that are more susceptible to out-of-stocks, shoplifting, slips and falls, or open/damaged items, for instance.

Likewise, retail store audit software can also be management's best friend when it comes to promoting the most profitable products at the store. More than inventory auditing, state-of-the-art retail audit store software allows merchandisers to use mobile devices to perform activities such as visual compliance checks and customer surveys.

VisitBasis is a comprehensive retail store audit software for businesses of all sizes. VisitBasis allows creating task templates for everything that needs to be checked at the retail location as well as instant access and analysis of the information collected, providing a budget-friendly and easy-to-use system that helps managers take full control of store audits.

See how VisitBasis can help your retail business in its loss-prevention efforts - sign up today for a free trial or schedule an online demo!


Thursday, February 23, 2017

Effective Reporting for Retail Audits and Merchandising

reporting for retail audits and merchandising
VisitBasis PDF visit summary reports
Retail-related activities generate a lot of information. However, reporting for retail audits and merchandising can be quite intimidating, and reading through sheets and sheets of data is hardly an effective way to pinpoint in-store issues that might be affecting retail sales. In that scenario, important issues such as frequent out-of-stocks can get lost within the large amount of information coming from different reps and locations.

Therefore, for retail businesses such as CPG manufacturers and sales and marketing agencies, it is imperative to have an effective system in reporting for retail audits and merchandising in addition to data collection. Reporting for retail audits and merchandising can be a powerful tool for any sales organization that wish to have a thorough understanding of their retail channels.

VisitBasis is a complete mobile data collection software solution that offers a state-of-the-art package for retail businesses, and includes:

  • Mobile data collection in Apple and Android smartphones and tablets, with full online/offline capabilities.
  • Full customization of in-store instructions, checklists, and forms, allowing managers to create not only mission-type activities – such as setting up displays, performing audits or customer surveys – but also ad-hoc tasks for mission-critical scenarios, as in the case of out-of-stocks or damaged products.
  • Real-time field activity tracking with map-based dashboards, GPS verification of visits, and instant notification of specific activities.
  • Advanced reporting for retail audits and merchandising activities, with straightforward data filtering options that deliver targeted reports in seconds and produce instant PDF documents for viewing and sharing.

Learn more how VisitBasis can improve your reporting for retail audits and merchandising: sign up for a free trial at www.visitbasis.com or request an online demo!


Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Keeping an Eye on Your Retail Competition with Retail Merchandising Software

In supermarkets, convenience stores, drugstores, etc., competing products can be side-by-side on a shelf. Therefore, for the consumer, it becomes easy to differentiate and the alternative to the original product choice is readily available, just inches away.

This is why in retail, more than in any other industry, it is of utmost importance to know what your competitors are doing at the points-of-sale. 

But how is it possible for merchandising managers in their offices inside corporate headquarters to keep track of region or chain-specific, ever-changing, competitor strategies?

Retail merchandising software is the answer to that question. With retail merchandising software, field reps have the power to - with the help of an app on their smartphones or tablets - capture point-of-sale competitor information, as well as other relevant product and category information.

Once field reps finish their visits, the information they captured will be readily available on the office interface of the retail merchandising software, and merchandising and marketing managers will be able to view and analyze competitor strategies.

In a nutshell, thanks to the access to the competitive intelligence it provides, retail merchandising software leads to informed decision-making when developing retail strategies.

VisitBasis retail merchandising software is the ideal solution for marketing and merchandising managers that are looking for ways to monitor their competition at each point-of-sale. VisitBasis provides a complete solution that includes full customization of the tasks performed by field reps at the stores, as well as real-time access to visit results through web-based dashboards and reports.

Interested in learning more about retail merchandising software? Schedule an online demo or sign up for a free trial!


Thursday, January 5, 2017

Simplifying Merchandising Reporting

Reporting on retail merchandising activities can be challenging. Locating useful information within a large amount of data coming from different sources is tricky so, most times, important information gets un- or underreported on, like recurring out-of-stocks.

Mobile retail merchandising solutions can help CPG businesses to produce timely and relevant reports not only by dramatically speeding up data collection and eliminating transcription, but also by providing merchandising report samples.

These merchandising report samples perform a "pre-filtering" of store data to display information in a way that becomes easier to apply additional filter options, export data to spreadsheet or other reporting software, and to simply generate PDF reports for sharing and emailing.

VisitBasis is a mobile retail merchandising software that allows you to quickly and easily monitor point-of-sale marketing through merchandising report samples, so you can easily access and share POS visit information. VisitBasis allows for straightforward access to data from overall results all the way down to the individual store visit information. This allows for an in-depth merchandising analysis that enables uncovering any holes that could potentially be hindering success.

Besides merchandising report samples, VisitBasis also provides real-time field activity tracking with map-based dashboards, GPS verification of visits, and instant notification of specific actions.

The below video shows some of the available sample merchandising reports available to VisitBasis users. To learn more about VisitBasis, go now to www.visitbasis.com and request an online demo!