QR Codes: What Are They and Are They For You?

You’ve probably heard us (and the world) mention QR codes for some time now, and usually in reference to larger companies. The quick of it is this: QR codes (“Quick Response codes”) are bar codes, but they can be read vertically and horizontally, which allows them to hold much more information. The code can be read by a dedicated QR scanner–but if you don’t walk around with one of those, you can also use an easy-to-get app on your smartphone (phew!). The code itself has an encoded web address, text, or some other extra, often QR-specific feature. It’s an off-line way to get to unique online content.

Though QR codes have been active in Japan for over a decade, the technology has only recently reached the US and is trickling down to the small business sphere as well. So what we’ve done here is collected some articles to introduce you to QR codes, what they can do for you, and how effective they are. And of course, examples.


What Are They?

In A Nutshell, What Are QR Codes. This is a very clear and concise intro to QR codes and some basic applications.

What Is a QR Code and Why Do You Need One? A little bit of repeat here, but gives you some bulleted ideas on how QR codes are practical and to whom they might cater.



How QR Codes Can Grow Your Business. Sneak peak: Sharing, Community, Calls to action, SEO.

5 Ways Small Business Can Use QR Codes: This article’s more “how” based and offers keen strategy–ever thought about a QR on you business card?

Who’s really scanning QR Codes? This survey puts QR codes to the test. How many people are using QR codes? What operating systems are they using to scan? How has usage grown? In neato graphic form too!



5 Unique Uses For QR Codes. More in the “how to do it” department. None of these ideas are up in the articles above, showcasing the vast possibilities for this kind of technology. In other words, don’t count it out just yet.

Best Buy Mood QR Codes Best Buy has done something interest and used QR codes internally for HR purposes–”how do you feel today?”. In addition, there’s a way cool video showing real time customer QR code scans for all Best Buy stores across the country.


Convinced? Do it.

QR Code Generator. This is one of many different QR generators, but try it out and tell us how it works for you.

Finding a QR Code Generator. A review of a few generators, as well as some really crucial tips in what type of content to encode and where to throw your QR codes.


The Next Generation, iQR Codes

iQR Codes. Unfortunately, in the technology world things move at a fast pace. iQR codes have a higher data capacity, can be rectangular, and can be printed even smaller. Though currently not used for marketing purposes, the development of iQR codes (or Intelligent Quick Response) might be something to keep an eye on over the next few years.




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