Using QR Codes for Your Business

If you have products to sell, using QR codes can help sales.
Although QR Codes (“Quick Response Codes”) have been around for over 20 years and have become popular in other countries, the U.S. is slowly starting to utilize them. If you’re a business owner and are curious of how to exploit their use, or are simply curious what they can do for you, read on.

What they are.
Pre-QR Codes: We’re all familiar with bar codes. Bar codes have become part of our American life since the mid 70’s. Compared to keyboard input at point-of-sale (supermarkets, for example), the UPC (Universal Product Code) has allowed point-of-sales be to extremely accurate, instantaneous, and efficient.

Bar codes have allowed businesses to quickly identify fast or slow selling items for more efficient inventory control. Bar codes have also been utilized for industry specific uses, such as ISBN numbers. However, as with all technology, it does have its downsides. One is that it’s limited in what it can do.
Note: The QR Code on the right will take you to Creative Pen Treasures.
If you don’t have a smart phone, see below how you can read the QRC.

QR Codes are scanned too, yet they contain much more information than traditional barcodes. QR Codes are considered two-dimensional, or a square matrix compared to “one-dimensional” barcodes. Although I doubt A. Square of Flatland would agree with the one-dimensional analogy.

How easily can QR Codes be created?
It couldn’t be easier, and you can create one within a minute since you have access to a computer. Here’s how:
1. Just input “QR Code Generator” in your search engine.
My example for a static QRC: https://www.the-qrcode-generator.com/
2. Under “Enter text to share here”: place a URL.
3. Save.
Follow directions if you want to add more detail. (Another site: https://webqr.com)

Is there a limitation to the number of QR Codes that can be created?
Probably not in your lifetime. Facetious as it may to sound, it’s pretty much true. Over the years, people had a harder time finding appropriate URL’s for their website. There’s a finite combination of words/numbers using the most popular extension (com), and a reasonable URL length that people will want to bother with deciding on a URL for their site. Unlike a URL, you have broader possibilities with QR Codes, and the number of QRC’s you can generate are practically limitless.

For a simpler answer by Anders Borg: “QR codes are not in themselves supposed to be unique. You make them unique by encoding unique data.” (“Is it possible to run out of QR codes?”)  So, no need to rush to get a QR Code. They’ll always be available.

What can QR Codes Do for You?
This list is not complete by any means, but merely covers basic benefits that sellers would have when using a QR Code.

  • It provides a convenience. Unlike years ago, when people would have to input a URL to visit a website, scanning a QRC takes the user directly to a landing page, a mobile website, an advertisement (video), shows a static document (phone number/address, for example), a map with directions, promotions, or other information.
    They cost nothing to make. As smart phones are gaining popularity, QR Code Apps are easy to access and don’t require additional add-ons.
  • They can be read from a computer/TV screen, or business card, as easily as from a realtor’s FOR SALE sign (for example), which will take interested parties to a webpage for more information.
  • They can be integrated with web analytics.
  • Once a QRC is created, it can be left on display, and simply update the content on the targeted web page (or video) when needed.
  • You don’t necessarily need a smart phone w/app to read a QRC. Use your web cam to read it.

You get the idea…. For those that haven’t used QR Codes, now is a good time to think about how they can help promote your business.

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