What are QR codes and how to use them!


QR (Quick Response Code) is a specific barcode (two-dimensional code) that is machine-readable and designed to be read by smartphones. The code consists of black sections arranged in a square pattern on a white background. The encrypted information can be text, URLs, or other data.

In Japan, where it was created by Toyota Denso Wave subsidiary in 1994, the QR code is one of the most popular types of two-dimensional barcodes. The QR code was intended to allow its content to be decoded at high speed. (Source: Wikipedia)
You can see an image of the QR code here.


eyewide_QR Code

Basically, a QR code is a sophisticated bar code. So what makes QR codes different from the standard codes you see on food and other items?

Standard barcodes have a linear one-dimensional display and can only hold up to 20 digits, while QR codes are two-dimensional (2D) barcodes that can hold thousands of alphanumeric characters of information. In fact, it is their ability to hold significantly more information, as well as the user-friendliness that makes QR codes practical for individuals and businesses of all sizes.

QR codes can be scanned and read by a smartphone-enabled machine through software already installed on your phone, or with a downloaded application such as Lynkee Reader or i-NIGMA Reader, which is compatible with a wide variety of modern smartphones such as iPhone, Blackberry, Sony Ericsson, HTC, Motorola and Nokia. Smartphone readers / scanners allow users to read a QR code without special equipment. For example, you can walk into a store, use your smartphone to scan a QR code, and have instant access to information. QR codes, based on open-source technology, can also be created and scanned using a variety of mobile applications, giving you much more flexibility.

Popular for many years in Japan, QR codes in the last year have begun to gain ground in the US. In fact, according to a report by Mobio Indentity Systems, the use of QR codes increased by about 4,600 percent from 2010 to 2011 in the US. This really is a huge leap!

But let's take a look at how you can use QR codes to promote your business:

1. Increase sales on your corporate website .

Did you know that QR codes can lead to specific URLs on your site? You can create QR codes that are specific to certain products within your website. For example, you can promote your new products or products that have low sales.

2. Create email lists .

You can collect emails by creating a link that leads to an email registration form. Just make sure you give users an important reason to sign up for your newsletter or promotions.

3. Business cards.

Instead of burdening your business card with a lot of information, you can create a QR code that leads customers / partners to your contact information as well as your Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn pages.

4. Contests, discounts, raffles and prizes.

This is an innovative way to promote various smart marketing actions by creating QR codes. For example, you can create bids that are specific to QR codes. You can put these codes in your ad or post them on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, where users can scan them to see your marketing energy live.

5. Direct mail.

If you use direct mail then QR codes are a good way to promote your business.

6. Brochures.

Yes, people still use brochures to promote their business. For example, suppose you have a restaurant. You could create a QR code that goes directly to a URL (website) that gives a discount on a meal and directions to your restaurant.

7. Free downloads .

If you promote e-books or software for your business, you could use QR codes to spread the word. When users scan the code, you can give them a free ebook or the ability to download the software. You could also give your customers the opportunity to receive special offers by subscribing to your newsletter.

8. Customer service assistance.

You could use QR codes to give customers more information about your product or service. Create a QR code that leads to a FAQ page where customers can get answers to their questions via email or live chat. You can also provide customers with a "heads up" for future products.

9. Make phone calls or send SMS .

Using QR codes you could send phone calls to specific parts of your business or SMS messages.

10. Street ads.

Do not waste huge amounts on large ads on the streets or at airports. Use QR codes in such entries spending much less money because of the size and "say" more because of the information the codes store.