A QR Code (stands for “Quick Response”) and is a mobile phone readable barcode that’s been big in Japan forever, broke into Europe a while back, and is now getting traction in USA, Australia and around the world.
What is a QR Code?
A QR Code can contain a wide range of information and is being used by businesses all over the world as a marketing tool.
As a QR Code provider, I have also seen QR Codes used in many different industries for many different purposes. I have seen them provide information on wine bottles, care instructions on mattresses and other manufactured products, installation instructions on spare parts, product information for mechanical oils, fruit juices plus many more uses.
Scanning A QR Code
If you have a smart phone, and have one of the many free QR Code reading apps installed, simply take a picture of a QR Code and the app will redirected you to a mobile enabled site, Facebook or Youtube site. Alternatively the QR Code may redirect you to a app installation or provide some text such as contact information.
Multi platform Reader: http://www.i-nigma.com/Downloadi-nigmaReader.html
So lets get really simple.
A QR Code is a graphic (jpg, SVG, PDF) which is created by a generator. Because it is a graphic it can be printed on pretty well any surface and any size. By scanning a QR Code with an QR Code App on a mobile device the scanner then either sends you to a website or displays the information.
QR Code Creation
QR Codes are created by using a generator that are mostly based online. There are free QR Code generators online and then there are paid services that allow you to make changes and do certain amounts of decoration.
Static QR Code:
The actual destination website URL or information is placed directly into the QR code and can’t be modified. Little to no tracking is available except through a statistic program by using dedicated web pages.
Dynamic QR Code:
The information is added to the QR Code and works exactly the same as the static QR Code however you can change this information at a latter date. Usually provides additional tools. Full tracking available.
Dynamic QR codes greatly extend the useful life of a single QR code since, once published, where it sends the user to can be changed at will without having to create a new QR code. A single QR code image can be deployed permanently in the wild and then simply re-tasked as and when required – link it to your own website this week, a YouTube video next week, your Facebook page the week after that, etc, etc.
It could also be directed to different offers or coupon pages on your own website as each new promotional program is released over time.
QR Code Tracking
QR Code Tracking is usually a paid service which provides a range of different metrics for each code. One of the best services is QR Codes Australia http://qrcodesaustralia.com.au which is based in Australia however provides dynamic codes for businesses globally.
QR Code Decorating
You can create a QR Code Graphic then decorate with any graphics program. You can add graphics, colour and even distort the QR Code to some degree.
When doing this there are some key parts of the code that should not be touched. You can find this simply with a google search.
The important thing is when you make any changes that you test it before releasing it. Many of the services around these days allow you to do some of this right in the program to create the QR Code. There are also some companies that specialize in decorating the Code however most graphic artists can do it.
QR Codes can be created free or through a service. They can be static or dynamic. They are scanned on a mobile device so should redirect to a mobile enabled site. For a business they can generate new traffic, provide technical or support information while providing a bit of theater.