With beacon and UHF technologies on the rise, many have started to wonder if handheld scanners will continue to have a place in the industry. These scanners require more staff, cost more money and require more overall work than simply attaching a beacon to an attendee’s badge and letting technology do its magic.
However, while passive technologies like beacons and UHF deliver valuable data with little to no attendee disturbance, handheld scanners provide certain insights that cannot be captured without the face-to-face interaction that this technology requires.
Handhelds Scanners for Lead Retrieval
One of the largest use cases for handheld scanners is lead retrieval. Whether using NFC, or scanning a QR code, exhibitors all over the world use handheld devices at events to capture, qualify and follow-up with sales leads.
This has continued to stay a best practice for several reasons. With beacon and UHF technology, you can see how long a visitor was at your booth and which parts of the booth they visited. However, with handheld scanners, you can gather more in-depth data on why the visitor was there, what they were looking for and how you can best follow-up with them to close the deal. Without the valuable information provided by handheld scanners, you are only able to get a superficial look into attendee behavior at your booth.
Handhelds Scanners for Access Control
Another major way in which handheld scanners are used in the events industry is for session & access control. In this scenario, handheld scanners offer several key benefits that beacon and UHF technology do not.
First of all, handheld scanners are able to regulate attendee access into certain areas and sessions, something that passive technologies cannot do. Based on credentials loaded onto the badge before or during the event, these scanners can indicate whether a person is granted access into the event, on the waitlist or denied.
Secondly, handheld scanners are able to take into account the intent of those entering a room and filter them so that data is gathered only on those that are relevant. Passive technologies gather data on every person walking in and out of a room or area. This could include a staff member who is there to restock food and beverages, or an event planner who is simply there to observe. With handheld scanners, however, attendants can regulate who they do and do not scan, which results in more accurate and specific data.
Our Recommendation for Gathering the Best Event Data
As an event organizer, the reason that you spend money on event technology is ultimately to better the attendee experience and get valuable and accurate post-event data that can be used to prove the value of the event and make improvements for next year.
The best way to accomplish this goal is through the magic combination of both passive and active technologies.
While beacon and UHF technologies are able to give you unprecedented data on attendee movement throughout the event, handheld scanners can complete the missing pieces with insight into the intent behind that movement.
By combining these two complimentary technologies you will be able to get the most complete, in-depth and accurate data on each attendee journey at your event.