When selling data capture solutions, what you are really selling is the value of paperless processes and consolidating digital information for better business intelligence. If you set out to capture data, then the assumption is that the data has some inherent value to the customer. That data will tell them more about their operations in terms of P&L or where they can be more efficient. When you think of data capture in terms of promoting better business intelligence you have more approaches to use when selling data capture solutions.
The definition for data capture is broad. Data capture can mean using barcode scanners or point-of-sale (POS) readers to capture a sale; it can be a document scanner to turn paper into digital files; it can be a handheld scanner to track inventory or packages; or it can be optical character recognition software designed to turn analog data into searchable digital content. No matter what data capture solutions you offer, you are converting data into a digital format that that can be used by the customer.
Here are some of the value-added considerations you should consider using when selling data capture solutions:
Improved operational efficiency – By capturing data in a software-readable format you are supporting business processes to promote greater efficiency. For example, POS solutions such as bar code and credit card readers not only record the actual transaction, they also capture additional data such as the item sold, the customer’s credit card information, address, and other data. All that information can be used to determine sales volume, manage CRM and customer relations, track inventory, and more. Similarly, paper files converted into digital format now become searchable content that can be used for billing, operational report, data auditing, and other purposes.
Improved data security – If securing and archiving information is important to your sales prospect then you have a strong case for adopting data capture systems. Promoting paperless processes allows customers to create a secure central archive for business-critical documents. Using central data storage makes data easier to protect as well as access, including managing access rights and auditing file access. In the event of an audit or to demonstrate file security for regulatory compliance (such as outlined in Sarbanes-Oxley or HIPAA); electronic file management makes it easy to provide an audit trail. And digitizing business documents makes for more secure file storage for disaster recovery.
Remote data access – Using data capture solutions to digitize business documents expands operational reach. By consolidating all business data in digitized form, companies can support remote locations, traveling employees, and remote suppliers. And document data capture solutions provides VARs with an opportunity to sell more data storage and computing resources, either as part of the company network or as cloud resources.
Mobile operations – Increasingly data capture technology is part of a larger mobile networking strategy. Retailers are adopting tablets and smartphones for POS applications. Delivery companies like UPS use handheld scanners to track packages. Warehouses use mobile systems for inventory control. And everyone is looking at wireless applications for secure remote access to files using BYOD and other wireless strategies. Selling data capture platforms could lead to the sale of a bigger mobile infrastructure.
These are just four ways that data capture solutions benefit businesses. If you think of data capture as promoting data access, you can match the business need to the prospect. Every organization is hungry for more data to drive business processes and analytics, so it’s a matter of matching the data capture solutions to the applications.