Barcode Ordering System FAQ


My products don’t have barcodes. Is that a problem?

No.  Your products don’t need to already have barcodes on them.  FairScan will setup and train you to print your own barcodes for your sample items.

I don’t know how barcodes work. Is that going to be a problem?

No.  You don’t need to have any barcode experience at all.  FairScan will teach you everything you need to know about barcodes including how to set them up and how to print them yourself.

Do all my products arriving from my supplier need to have barcodes on them?

No.  Only your sample products at the fair need to have a barcode on them.  It doesn’t matter if your supplier doesn’t barcode any of your items.  In fact even if they do provide a barcode, you will most likely want to print your own barcode for each sample item (see point below).

As my products already have barcodes on them, do I still need to print my own barcode for these items?

It is up to you but most exhibitors print their own barcode so they can display other relevant wholesale information about that item including wholesale price and minimum order quantities.

Also important to note that in some cases the barcode is printed on the packaging of the item from your supplier and then you may remove the packaging to display the item at a fair.  Therefore having a barcode printed is a very good idea.

What happens if a barcode falls off at the fair?

If you have a laptop or printer at the fair you can print another one.  Or if you have a spare copy of printed barcodes you can use that.  Or alternatively if someone wants to order a product without a barcode, you can either enter the code into the handheld and order it that way or do a search on the handheld based on the code/sku or description.

Do I need to use GS1/EAN barcodes?

No, GS1/EAN barcodes aren’t needed to use FairScan.  These types of barcodes are primarily used at retail level and therefore are only recommended to be used if you want to supply barcodes on all your products for your retail customers.

Do I need to pay for barcodes?

No.  You don’t need to pay for barcodes if you are going to use them just for FairScan.  If you decide that you want to supply your products with barcodes to your retail customers, then it is recommended you then pay for GS1/EAN barcodes and then have your supplier print the barcodes when the item leaves the factory (if possible).

My products already have barcodes on them. Can I use those?

Yes.  As long as you either have the barcode numbers loaded against each item in your Accounting System, or you have an Excel (or similar) document which lists which barcodes are for which products, then those barcodes can be scanned by FairScan.

Do I need a special barcode printer to print barcodes?

No.  The only time we have set our customers up with a special barcode printer is when they sell super small Jewellery that then requires a very small (1.5cm x 1.5cm) barcode label.  The only time a barcode printer is needed is if you wanted to print a barcode that wraps around a chain (or similar) and sticks back on itself.  Only a barcode printer can print on that type of dumbbell label.

I have really small items that where a barcode won’t fit. What can I do?

If your items are so small they can’t have a barcode attached, or if you think a barcode will detract from the visual of the item and therefore don’t want to attach a barcode, then you can either have a ‘cheat sheet’ of barcodes printed that you can scan from.  So if you were selling small Jewellery rings, you could have a piece of cardboard next to the rings so that when someone wants to order a ring you pick up the cardboard and scan the relevant barcode.  This is similar to when you go to Bunnings and buy an item with no barcode, they find that item in a folder and scan that barcode.

Alternatively you can do a search on the handheld and add the item to the order that way instead of scanning a barcode.  Obviously you wouldn’t want to be doing this too regularly as it would slow you down but it is there as an option.

I have some items that come in multiple colours/sizes but I don’t display them all at a fair. What can I do?

A good solution for this is to put multiple barcodes on the one item and then scan the appropriate barcode when the customer is placing their order.  For example a vase may come in 3 sizes; small, medium, large, but only one of them is on display at the fair.  If possible if 3 barcodes are then put on or near the vase, then the order taker can scan the relevant barcode that represents the size that the customer wants to order. 

This is common on clothing when swing tags are used.  If the clothing item comes in 6 sizes then 6 barcodes are attached to the swing tag and then scanned when required.

What can I display on the barcode label?

Anything that fits!  All barcode labels are uniquely designed so we usually start by giving you a list of available label sizes and getting you to select the appropriate size.  Once selected you can then select what information is to go on the label and also font size and position etc.  This is also easy to adjust in the future if you wish to make the price field a bit bigger or remove it completely.  You will be shown how to make such adjustments if required.

I want to use a different size barcode label for different products. Is this possible?

Yes.  Some of our customers have big items (furniture) and therefore wish to use a big label, and then they might sell smaller items (lamp shades) that use a smaller label.
You can have as many sized labels as required but to keep things simple we normally recommend keeping the number of labels sizes between 1-3 different sizes.

My customers (retailers) want me to supply my products with barcodes. Can FairScan help with this?

FairScan can give you some guidance on this.  The way that barcodes are printed for FairScan can easily be modified for the barcodes for your retailers.


I wish to use FairScan for the first time at an upcoming fair. How can this happen?

These days initial training is mostly done remotely over the phone and remote access.  We send you a handheld device loaded with data and then talk you through how to use it to take an order.  You can then practice with the handheld and get familiar with how to take an order as that is the most important process of using the system (also the easiest!).

Then before your next fair we will meet you at your stand on one of the setup days to go back over the system and answer any questions that you have.

My business is located in another state. How will training take place?

Most businesses are initially trained remotely over the phone so your location doesn’t really matter.  Then before you use the system for the first time we like to visit your stand and make sure you are ready and answer any questions you may have.

I have new workers working for me at an upcoming fair. How can they be trained?

We suggest that you train them at the fair once the stand is setup.  We can train them on your behalf but that is considered a ‘FairScan Extra’ and will be charged outside the standard support plan.

I am not very good with computers. Will I be able to use the FairScan system?

Yes.  As long as you think you can do it, and have an open mind, then you can do it.  Using the handheld to take an order is like using a mobile phone.  It is very easy to pick up and most people only need about 5-10 minutes of training to be able to take an order.

I would like someone from FairScan to setup my system at each fair. Is this possible?

This is possible, but is considered a ‘FairScan Extra’.  We like to train someone within your business to do all the setup but for whatever reason (don’t want to, can’t, unavailable) then FairScan has options to do it on your behalf.  Note that FairScan Extras are considered outside the standard support agreement and are quoted and charged for.

If I require further training in the future, what options do I have?

In depth additional training can be provided as a ‘FairScan Extra’.  We are happy to answer your questions and show you some functionality as part of the standard support plan, but if the person we are training is new and had no in-house training, then we will insist upon in-depth training that is part of the FairScan Extras.


What is included when I purchase the FairScan System?

Setup, training and 12 months of support is provided when users buy the FairScan System outright.  During this time you will receive unlimited support and the required training to have you fully self-sufficient.  You will also receive all software updates that are available.

I have a specific report/feature that I require. Can this be provided?

We will try and accommodate any such requests but will need to assess on a case by case situation as the complexity of the report/feature will need to be considered.

How often does FairScan update its software?

The FairScan Software usually has an update every 6 months that all customers on a support plan are entitled to download and install.  Many of these updates are only ‘recommended’ whilst if there is an ‘essential’ update then you will be notified and instructed to install/update.

Can I run the FairScan software on a Mac computer?

No.  The FairScan software is Windows based and must be run on a Windows PC/laptop/server.  FairScan can run in the cloud (see below) which runs on a Windows Server that can then be accessed by a Mac computer.

Can FairScan run ‘in the cloud’?

Yes.  In a Fair environment, the most common setup is to run FairScan on a Windows laptop so that order printing is fast and automatic.  Alternately FairScan can be run in the cloud at a fair which then means customers will receive an email copy of their order instead of a print out.  Ultimately it comes down to your preference as to which you would like to run.

If the FairScan system is used by reps/agents on the road, then the FairScan software is run in the cloud.


I have an item that comes in multiple sizes. Do I need a separate code for each variety/option?

It is highly recommended that you have a unique, separate code/sku for each item variation that you sell.  If you don’t then you need to make a note each time you order that product indicating which variation is required.  So although this isn’t the end of the world, it will slow the ordering process down and reduce your efficiency.  Therefore it is recommended that each product variation has a unique code.

My prices aren’t confirmed until the day or two before a fair. Is this a problem?

It isn’t a problem as there is an easy process to follow to update your pricing/items right before the fair.  We normally recommend that you load your items and data about 2 weeks prior to the fair as practice and then ask FairScan any questions that you may have.  Then repeat the process as close to the fair as possible once pricing has been finalized.

Accounting Systems

I plan to change Accounting System in the future. Is that going to be a problem?

FairScan supports multiple different Accounting Systems so if you are changing to one that we already support, then all we need do is change a setting and maybe adjust the barcode label.  Standard support covers such situations.  If you are moving to a system that FairScan doesn’t currently support, then we will research our options then advise you of what is required. 

It is recommended that you check with FairScan prior to deciding to change to see what is possible.  That way there are no surprises.

My Accounting System isn’t listed on the Integration page. Can FairScan import to my system?

You will need to contact FairScan and provide the name of the system you are moving to so that we can investigate further.  Most modern Accounting Systems have a built in import process that FairScan can then integrate with.  Each case needs to be investigated separately.

We are running a really old version of MYOB. Can FairScan import to that?

FairScan have been importing to MYOB since the early 2000’s so as long as it is part of the MYOB AccountRight family of products (Premier, Plus, Standard, Enterprise) then we can import orders to it.  If in doubt let us know the exact version you are running and we can advise accordingly.

I don’t want my FairScan orders imported to my Accounting System. Is that a problem?

No that isn’t a problem.  We recommend you import orders to your Accounting System as it is easy and will save you a lot of time, but if you don’t want to and prefer to key your orders in, then that is fine.

What happens if/when my Accounting System is updated? Will FairScan still be able to import?

FairScan will always update our software to support common Accounting Systems such as MYOB, Xero, Cin7 etc.  Such updates are provided free of charge to customers on support plans.

I don’t have an Accounting System. Can I still use FairScan?

You can, although it is strongly recommend that you get an Accounting System first, and then link FairScan to that.  This isn’t essential and we have had many new businesses use FairScan before they had an Accounting System setup as they were still able to scan orders and provide copies to customers in the same way as other businesses.  So there is still significant benefit to using FairScan even if an Accounting System isn’t ready yet.


How long do handhelds usually last for?

The handhelds that we use are of commercial quality and last for 10+ years.  We have some customers still using their original handhelds purchased in the early 2000’s!  If they aren’t used everyday, then you can expect them to last 10+ years.  If used by reps and agents on the road then around 6 years is the general life span.

What if a new model handheld is released?

Like any technology there will always be new, more expensive model released.  They may be faster and have a few new features but there is no need to upgrade your hardware if you are happy with the job that they are performing.

A good example is a calculator; new models have come out over the years with new features (solar, scientific functions) but if you only use it for the basic functions (addition, subtraction, multiplication and division) then chances are the original calculator will suit your needs and be able to be used for many years to come.

Can I mix and match handhelds?

Yes you can mix and match handhelds, but not that each handheld generally has its own cradle/charger so therefore it is recommended to try and keep to the same models, but there is no problem with mixing and matching handhelds.

What warranty is provided with handhelds?

12 months.

Is there any need to have my handhelds serviced in the future?

Only if something isn’t working as expected.  Over time the battery may not last as long as normal or the screen might get a bit worn out in areas and harder to tap so therefore the device can be serviced and these parts replaced.  All handhelds are ‘modular’ meaning that if one aspect fails then it can easily be replaced or repaired.

How long will handheld batteries last at the fair and how many years will batteries last for?

It is very important to have handhelds as close to 100% charge at the start of a fair.  If they are then they could be used for a couple of days without charging again (of course this depends on the number of orders and how many items are scanned for each order).  We recommend topping them up throughout the day so they never go flat during a fair.

All handhelds come with a replaceable battery which can easily be clicked out and replaced with a new/replacement one.  Batteries usually last around 6-8 years of fair use or 3-4 years of on road use.

I have a problem with a handheld. How can it be repaired?

FairScan can repair all handhelds that we sell.  If you have a problem you let us know and we can then give you an idea of time and cost (if outside warranty) for that repair.

It may also be possible to repair a handheld mid fair as we carry parts and can provide an overnight service in many situations.

Do I need to have a laptop at the fair?

No.  If you want to provide print outs at the fair for your customers, then it is recommended to have a laptop.  But if you prefer to have orders automatically emailed to customers then the FairScan software can run in the cloud on a server and no laptop is therefore needed at the fair.

I want to print copies of orders for customers at a fair. What hardware do I need?

Laptop, printer, and a wireless router.  All can be provided, setup and configured for you by FairScan.

If I buy a new laptop for the fair, who and how will load the FairScan software be loaded on it?

This can be done by FairScan via remote access prior to the fair.  We have instructions on how to install the software but we can do it much faster and allow 1 laptop change per year under the standard support plan.

Trade Fairs

What fairs does FairScan supply onsite support for?

Please visit the ‘Trade Fair’ page to see which fairs FairScan currently support.

Is support available prior to a supported fair?

Yes.  At ‘fully supported’ fairs, FairScan is onsite during the setup days to ensure businesses are ready to go once the fair opens.

What time does FairScan provide support at a fair?

As a rough rule it is usually 15min before the fair opens until 15min after the fair closes.  FairScan is onsite all day.

How do I find out about support details for an upcoming fair?

An email is sent out in the weeks leading up to the fair detailing support details for the upcoming fair.  These details are also available on our website.

Do I have to pay for support at Trade Fairs?

When buying FairScan, 12 months of support is included.  After 12 months a ‘per fair’ fee is charged which includes unlimited onsite support at the fair, offsite support in relation to the fair, and all software updates.

Can I use FairScan at a fair that isn’t supported?

Yes.  Many of our customers exhibit at overseas fairs that we don’t support.  There is no charge for this, although if multiple support requests are made then we may need to charge for such support.

I require FairScan to visit my site multiple times each day of a fair. Will I be charged more?

No.  Fair support is generally considered ‘unlimited’ although if one of our customers require significant support at a show, then it will be insisted that they receive additional training (FairScan Extra) prior to their next fair to avoid such a situation. 

I am going to have more than 1 stand at an upcoming fair. How does this impact using FairScan?

There are no additional licensing fees for this, but there may be an additional support fee depending on the location and requirements of the 2nd stand.  This can all be discussed if/when the situation arises.

Use Outside Fairs

Can I use FairScan in my showroom?

Yes.  FairScan can be used anywhere an order can be taken.  Having FairScan setup for when customers visit your showroom is a good idea.

Will it cost me anything to use FairScan in my showroom?

No, as long as you have purchased FairScan.  If you require support in relation to using it in the showroom then that may be charged on our standard hourly rate.

Can my reps/agents use FairScan when they visit shops/customers?

Yes.  Orders can be scanned out of catalogues, off tablet screens, off price lists etc.  Orders are then sent back to the server with the customer receiving an email copy of the order.

Reps and agents have been using FairScan on the road since the early 2000’s.

Annual Support Plan

How much does a FairScan Annual Support plan cost?

The cost of a Support Plan depends on how many ‘fully supported’ fairs that you are exhibiting at.  The more fairs you do, the cheaper the per fair fee is.  FairScan will advise of these costs prior to you purchasing the FairScan System.

What is and isn’t included?

Support Plans cover offsite support in relation to the fair (both prior and after the fair), onsite support (at fully supported fairs) and software updates to the system you have purchased.

FairScan will assist with any questions or problems you have in relation to the FairScan system.

As a general rule FairScan Support covers problems and questions that you may have but doesn’t cover us doing tasks that you are expected to do.  These are covered under ‘FairScan Extras’.

Do I need to go on a Support Plan?

It is written into your contract that ongoing support is required.  This ensures that FairScan is able to provide onsite support at fairs throughout Australia and also to release software updates to the FairScan system.

What happens if I don’t attend a fair that I originally planned to attend but have paid FairScan Support for?

If you are unable to exhibit at a fair for whatever reason then you won’t be charged for support.  You will be credited for that amount or paid back depending on the circumstance and requirements. 


Can I trial FairScan before purchasing it?

Yes.  We offer a rental option and if you decide to purchase FairScan after renting, then you will get your last rental cost back as credit.  That way you aren’t out of pocket and can make sure the FairScan System is suitable to your business’s needs.

Can I pay FairScan off over a period of time?

Yes.  We have interest free options available when purchasing FairScan or additional hardware.