Laurie Ann's Coupon Tracker

 

office (205) 467-7427
Springville, Alabama USA

Scanning Coupons

With the NEW Version v2.0.02, 06/22/2015 - You can now scan new coupons into la Coupon-Tracker during Coupon File Maintenance if you have a Barcode Reader. NOT ALL Barcode Readers Will Work! So you should READ this complete page before purchasing any Barcode Reader.

What Information Will Scan Into la Coupon-Tracker?

  • Coupon Value (dollar amount of coupon value)
  • Is Coupon based on Dollar or Percentage? (Type I Setting)
  • Purchase Qty Requirement (Type II Setting - Single, Any 2, Any 3 , Any 4 or B1G1, B2G1 etc...)
  • Coupon Expire Date (if encoded in Barcode, some vendors do not include expire date in barcode)
  • ** Each Coupon is recorded in the Products Table for future scans so Catalog, Name Brand and Description can be loaded.

What Information Requires User Input?

  • Name Brand (** unless it has not already been scanned before)
  • Description (** unless it has not already been scanned before)
  • Coupon Count (number of coupons)
  • Reference


The basic information input is on the Barcode Reader Input Screen.

How Does The Barcode Reader Work?

From the Coupon File Maintenance Screen you will find a new Command called Scan at the bottom of the screen...

You can still select Add to add new coupons in the same way you've added them before, the new Scan will take you to another Screen called Read Barcode... (image below)

At this point the system is waiting on you to scan the coupon, obviously you must have a barcode reader in order to scan coupons into la Coupon-Tracker. For now lets assume a coupon has been scanned... (While in Scan Mode (Read Barcode) the system will LOOP back to Read Barcode until you Exit by clicking the Red X in the top right corner)

After scanning a Band-Aid coupon for $1.50 off on any (2) Band-Aid first aid products, the user must input the Name Brand and Description, (if this coupon had been previously scanned, the Name Brand and Description would have been populated for you) then input the Coupon Count and Reference. Select Cancel to re-scan coupon or scan another. Press the Red X to Exit the Scan Mode Loop. After selecting Apply, the system will return back to the Coupon File Maintenance screen and will auto add this new coupon defaulting the Cursor on the Apply button. (image below)

Notice the Cursor has defaulted to the Apply button, so you can easily press the Enter key to continue adding this new coupon that was just scanned by the Read Barcode function. You could make changes before Applying if needed.


At this point, just like adding coupons manually you will need to assign this new product to a Catalog
if it does not already exist in your Products Table.

The new Barcode Reader feature will keep track of the Last Catalog and Name Brand selected that becomes the defaults on the next scanned coupon. So when working in Scan Mode (Read Barcode) if you scan your coupons in Name Brand order, you would only have to change each time the Name Brand changes. The system loops back to the Read Barcode for another scan by default until you Exit.

What Type Of Barcode Reader Do I Need?

First and Most Important, the Barcode Reader Must be able to decode the GS1 DataBar Expanded (Stacked) barcode that has been adopted by the Coupon Industry.


As of 2011 all Manufacturer's or anyone issuing Coupons in North American should be using this coupon standard format.
Some Manufacturer's will still put the older barcodes along side the new GS1 DataBar standard, because some vendors worry
that not all retailers have upgraded there POS software to match the new GS1 DataBar Standard. 

What Should I Look For In A Barcode Reader?

Basic Reader Features:
  • la Coupon-Tracker will only decode the GS1 Databar Expanded (Stacked) Standard.
  • SO; Make sure GS1 DataBar is listed as one of the decoding Symbologies for that Reader. (see samples below)
  • I recommend using the USB Port Interface over any other options, most offer USB, PS2 (keyboard wedge), Wireless, RS232 and many others. I've tested using USB (Set to Keyboard) I'm sure most any other interface should work fine with la Coupon-Tracker as long as it is setup as Keyboard Input.
  • Lower end Readers (price wise) are referred to as Touch Scanners, in which you have to touch or be within 1 to 3 inches of barcode to read it. While mid-range to higher end readers are Laser and can be within 6 to 10 inches away from barcode.
  • Make sure the Interface Cables are included with the Barcode Reader (depending on the interface you decide on)
Optional Features:
  • Because la Coupon-Tracker will require some basic input from you for each scanned coupon, it's best to get an Auto type scanner.
  • Do you want an Automatic or a Trigger Only Reader?
  • All Automatic or Auto Sense Readers would require a Stand and most will come with one.
  • Scan Method - Single Line Laser, CCD Scanner, Bi-directional Laser and many others.
  • Some can be set in Automatic Scanning Mode with beam running while others are set in Auto Sense Mode like the Voyager.

The price range could be anywhere from $35.00 to $250.00 depending on the options that you choose, but keep in mind that any reader should work with la Coupon-Tracker as long as it can decode GS1 DataBar.

Samples when Looking for GS1 DataBar Symbologies


If the GS1 Databar is not listed, call the manufacture and ask them, as you can see from the sample above, their are many barcode symbologies and some manufactures will simply say "standard 1D barcodes", because all of the ones listed above are 1D barcodes. Do you know what a 2D barcode is? It's that square looking barcode on products that you scan into your smart phone.

Sample Barcode Readers:

You can find many Barcode Readers on the Internet, just Google "low volume barcode readers" or one the models below to get started.

 

UniTech MS250 (Touch, Trigger Only, USB Cable) Priced $49.00

DataLogic QuickScan 2330 (Laser, Auto Sense or Trigger with Stand, USB Cable) Priced $123.00

Honeywell Eclipse MS5145 (Laser, Trigger Only, USB Cable) Priced $105.00

Honeywell Voyager 9520 (Auto Sense or Trigger with Stand, USB Cable) Priced $149.00

Honeywell Voyager 1250g (Auto Sense or Trigger with Stand, USB Cable) Priced $67-$85..
This is the model scanner that my wife (Laurie Ann) uses and is the model that I used for development, it was so simple to plug and play without any programming or installing drivers... It works with la Coupon-Tracker out-of-the-box.