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Retail Greatness Blog

Is It Worth It?: How to Calculate Your Return on Investment (ROI) of a new Software Platform

When deciding on a new in-store execution software, one of the most important steps you need to take is to calculate your return on investment (ROI). Because, in the end, after you've done all of the research, spoken to stakeholders, clarified your needs, and dreamed big about where this new platform could take your business, it will still come down to one, simple question: Is it worth it?

Topics: calculating ROI choosing an in-store execution platform calculating return on investment

Why You Should Embrace - Not Fear - Mobile Data Collection Software


The older we get, the harder it is to agree to make a change. We like things the way they are. If it ain't broke, don't fix it, right? So the idea of mobile data collection software probably sounds like Frankenstein's monster in that you want to stay far, far away from it at all costs. Maybe it's just the idea of trying something new. Or, if you're a field rep, maybe you're apprehensive of your managers securing this kind of software because you fear they will abuse it in order to micro-manage everything that you do. 

Topics: mobile data collection

What is the Best Mobile App for Merchandising Field Service and Retail Sales?

The best mobile application for workforce task management and retail sales is the one that will most consistently drive the most perfect stores.  Tremendous thought, field-battle-testing, and listening to the people who actually use the application is required to create and maintain the best app.  This post will describe what goes into making the best app, why each part of it is important, and what you should be thinking about in terms of what is best for your business.  Along the way I will call out 'best app features' to honor the title of this blog entry.

Note: click these links if you want to learn about the best dashboards, and best field data review system.

Topics: best mobile app best workforce task management app best merchandising application best field sales app

3 Suggestions for Optimal Product Placement


When stocking your shelves, it's not enough to have an ample amount of products on the shelf - though that is incredibly important - but you also have to put the right products in the right spots, else they'll never budge from that shelf. Case in point: how often do you honestly bend down and check out the products on the very bottom shelf? Probably not that often.

Topics: product placement

4 Things Your Customers are Loving Right Now


A great way to stay ahead of the competition is to take note of and analyze any trends that might pop up in the marketplace. What follows are four trends that are popular right now among those in your customer base.

Topics: omnichannel processes brick and mortar mobile shopping

3 Tips to Help Field Reps Remain Accountable


Field reps often have a lot of balls up in the air that they have to juggle, and when you're working by yourself in the field, it is very easy (and perhaps too tempting) to let your accountability slide. Who's going to notice, right? No one's there in person to supervise you. But the truth is that in time, everyone will notice, and you don't want to put your job in jeopardy while hurting the company that you work for when it's so easy to prevent both from happening.

Topics: Field Rep Greatness accountability

5 Ways You're Failing Your Field Reps


You may just be trying to be the best dang field manager in the industry, but as it turns out, your day-to-day practices may be more of a disservice to your reps than a benefit.

Topics: Field Manager Greatness

5 of the Biggest Drains on a Field Rep's Productivity


Field reps have tight schedules that are packed with plenty of tasks to keep them busy. So it is incredibly frustrating when something comes up that takes any of their time away from the task at hand.

Topics: Field Manager Greatness Field Executive Greatness unproductive time increase productivity

7 Ways to Be a Fantastic Field Manager


Field managers have a hard job. They are responsible for a team of field reps whom they don't even see on a daily basis, and yet they must be able to communicate instructions to their reps clearly enough over digital channels to ensure that their reps know exactly what to do and where to do it.  

Topics: Field Manager Greatness Field Executive Greatness

Why It is So Important to Be Able to Trust Your Staff


Would you give your all to a manager who you know doesn't trust you? Probably not. You'd probably do the bare minimum in order to not get fired. This is one of the most important reasons why a manager should be able to trust - and properly convey that he trusts - his staff. Morale, productivity, mood - everything suffers when there is a feeling of mistrust afoot.

Topics: Field Rep Greatness Field Executive Greatness hiring a field rep

3 Ways to Make the Work Environment More Friendly for Your Employees


Managers often associate their staff's having fun with goofing off, but making the workplace a friendlier one is actually incredibly important to an employee's morale. An unfriendly work environment is one of the major reasons why productivity drops - if an employee feels like their workplace is draining, droll, and like there's an overall scent in the air of management being uncaring, then employees may stop engaging with the company and with each other. And a lack of engagement leads to a host of other problems. 


Topics: Field Manager Greatness Field Executive Greatness

3 Tips to Help You Enjoy Clearer Communication with Your Field Reps


We say it all the time, and it deserves to be said over and over again because some field managers and field reps just don't get it: communication is one of the most important parts of any relationship, including business relationships. Without clear communication, how is a manager supposed to know when and where an issue exists? And, in turn, without clear communication, how is a rep supposed to know what to do to fix the issue?

Topics: Field Manager Greatness

4 Tips to Help Reps Battle Complacency and Boost a Sense of Urgency


Maintaining the status quo is the fastest way for a company to end up dead in the water. You don't ever want to be happy with complacency. You want to constantly strive for better, for more, for a higher level than you're on at the moment.

Topics: Field Manager Greatness

3 Mistakes Companies Make During Retail Audits


It's incredibly expensive to conduct a retail audit.  Want to know what's more expensive?  Conducting an audit that doesn't benefit your company.  Follow this guide to avoid 5 huge mistakes in retail audits.

Topics: retail audit field audit conducting an audit

Why Your Mobile Solution Should Be As User-Friendly as Possible


Field reps and their managers may be the best at what they do, but they may not be too technically savvy. That is perfectly okay, so long as the mobile solution that they are working with is as user-friendly as possible so that teams don't have to waste otherwise valuable time waiting on their already overwhelmed tech support team when they can just fix the issue themselves and move on with their day.

Topics: field force software user friendly

Mobile Software: The Key to Making Every Store Perfect


Everybody says they want to create perfect stores, and everyone in the Consumer Goods Industry knows that most stores are only perfect on opening day.  Keeping even your section of a store perfect day-in and day-out is simply not possible without awesome technology.  Here's how having awesome technology will help you to get and keep every store perfect.

Topics: every store perfect

Why Companies are Turning More and More Toward Pre-Built Mobile Apps


In 1989 when we started our company, so little software existed for the Retail Industry that companies -- even huge companies -- flocked to buy what we (and our competitors) built to gain a competitive advantage.  Once those huge companies saw how much value a retail merchandising software application could provide they quickly hungered for more -- yet as an industry we were not meeting the demands of those enterprise-application-hungry companies and some looked inward to gain the enterprise level features they craved.

Now the pendulum is swinging back again, and we see billion dollar companies switching back to vendor supplied applications.  Here's why...

Topics: pre-built mobile apps mobile apps

4 Features of Field Mobile Software that Ensure Your Reps are Always Provided with the Most Up-to-Date Information


Fewer scenarios could be worse for a field rep. Thinking that s/he has the most up-to-date information about a product, s/he spreads the word about the amazing sale that's going on right now, and informs any customer within earshot about how that customer needs to jump on the bandwagon, else the product will be sold out in no time.

Except...the information the rep was given is actually old information, the rep, manufacturer, store, and retail chain are now losing face and possibly lifelong customers.

Topics: Field Rep Greatness promotional materials sales materials

5 Features to Help You Choose the Right Mobile Device (Phone or Tablet) for Your Team's Needs


If your team has not yet been outfitted with mobile devices, or - better yet - if everyone is due for an upgrade, then you want to be sure that the mobile devices you choose for your reps are equipped with the capabilities they will need in order to ensure a smooth and efficient performance and that will help them get done what they need to get done with minimal fanfare.

Topics: mobile device mobile solution mobile shopping

3 Tips to Help Make Your In-Store Execution More Effective

In today's technologically advanced world, it is more important than ever to be on top of your game at all times, especially if your business depends on brick-and-mortar stores. If things aren't displayed perfectly, and if prices aren't adjusted (and reflected) accordingly, then your customers are going to flock to your online competitors faster than your store's doors can close behind them as they leave your location.

Topics: in-store execution

A Beginner's Guide to Retail Audits with In-Store Mobile Technology


Retail audits mean different things to different people.  For example, if you're a retail employee an audit may be interested in checking your ability to keep a clean restroom for the retail customers. Or, if you're an employee of a product manufacturer, an audit will be more concerned with how your products are positioned for sale in a given store.  MSO's could be tasked with either type of audit, but regardless, the format for how audits are conducted with in-Store Mobile Technology is the same.

Topics: Field Rep Greatness Field Manager Greatness Field Executive Greatness retail audit retail shelf audit

Using KPIs Effectively

Effective Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) measure a company's productivity and efficiency to determine its overall performance. Remote field teams can especially benefit from this information because KPIs allow field reps to see how their individual accomplishments contribute to the overall success of the company - something that's harder to see when you're out in the field all day.

Topics: field force performance field team accountability relevance kpis timeliness

Field Executives: 5 Tips to Successfully Implement a Retail Data Collection Program


A retail data collection program can be looked at as a kind of camera that takes a "snapshot" of a store's current performance. This "camera" can then monitor that store by taking multiple "snapshots" over an extended period of time to track trends in its performance. So instead of capturing family memories, this "camera" collects and stores retail data. Less fun, maybe, but important nonetheless.

Topics: Field Executive Greatness retail data collection develop software or use saas

4 of the Most Helpful Travel-Related Features of Field Mobile Software Packages


Field mobile software makes everyone's lives a little bit easier, especially those of your field reps. The key to implementing a successful software program is to make sure that it includes the kind of features that would most benefit your team. Travel is a big part of every field rep's day, so you definitely want to secure a software package that includes significant, if not a majority of, travel-related apps.

Topics: field mobile software travel

Understanding and Avoiding Out of Stock Issues (OOS)

It's every field rep's nightmare: the dreaded out-of-stocks (OOS). When you scour a shelf for an item that's supposed to be there and it's not, a host of questions pop up. Was it misplaced? Did it sell out? Was enough even ordered in the first place? And, worst of all: what if a customer comes in looking for that exact item at this exact moment...and you have to turn them away?

Topics: out of stock oos

The Importance of Recognizing When a Field Rep Needs a Boost


One of the most difficult things a field manager faces is trying to establish a structured environment for their reps. Field reps have greater difficulty establishing a routine due to the fact that they are always visiting different stores, depending on the day, and they are constantly on the road. There is no such thing for a field rep as getting to the office, putting your stuff down, and grabbing a cup of joe from the breakroom before settling down in front of a computer until lunch.

Topics: Field Rep Greatness Field Manager Greatness field team accountability

Turning a "No" into a "Yes" through Persuasion

Those who are inexperienced might confuse "persuasion" for "manipulation," but there is an important distinction between the two. Manipulation is when you are the only one who benefits from a situation, whereas persuasion is when you and the other party both enjoy a positive outcome from the experience.

Topics: Field Rep Greatness field sales sales sales persuasion

Territory Management: Helping Your Team Do Their Very Best So They Can Be the Very Best

How does it happen that a manager can have a team of field reps that are good at what they do, yet the company's sales figures and customer satisfaction levels keep dropping? The most common diagnosis is territory mismanagement.

Topics: Field Rep Greatness Field Manager Greatness territory management customer relationship client relationship

10 Ways to Increase Sales and Reduce Costs Via In-Store Execution


Did you know that you can maximize your in-store execution to improve your sales numbers and reduce your overall costs? What follows is a list of 10 ways to help you do just that.

Topics: Field Rep Greatness Field Manager Greatness Field Executive Greatness standards in store execution standards

3 Things Small Businesses Can Do to Increase Their Productivity

Increasing productivity is one of, if not the most, effective way to stay ahead of your competition. This is especially true for smaller businesses, since they typically don't have the resources available to them (like labor, a bigger budget, higher-end mobile devices, etc.) that larger corporations do.

Topics: increase productivity small business