Best Practise – Using QR Codes with Success

Best Practise – Using QR Codes with Success

Here are 10 simple guidelines to insure success when using QR codes

  1.  Make the QR code large enough and placed in a prime area of your ad or web page so it will be easily spotted by your QR Codeaudience. People will either –
    1. see it,  know what it is and scan it OR
    2. see it, not know what it is and ask about it
  2. Be sure to inform your staff (or anyone who may be asked about it) what a QR Code is, how to use it and the data that your QR code contains. One hotel chain spent several hundred dollars on print advertising that contained a QR code for a complimentary dinner, as a way to generate leads for future marketing.  When guests noticed it on the signage and asked the front desk clerk about it, she shook her head and said ‘I dunno. Looks like an ink blotch from the printer”. There is nothing worse than seeing thousands of dollars in well thought out marketing strategies go down the toilet because the team wasn’t kept up to speed.
  3. Remember, the key to your vital information contained in the QR Code is – less is more. Keep the QR Code data succinct and to the point. The more information you put in, the bigger and more complex the image, the longer it takes to load on someone’s smart phone and the higher the risk that some of your vital information may not transfer in the scan. Not that errors happens all the time but when they do, it is usually at the fault of the business that generated it. Your QR Code should not contain the first 2 chapters of your novel, just the Title of your book with a link to the Amazon page where it can be downloaded or read on screen. Remember brevity – keep it short and sweet.
  4. When placing your QR code on your website or ad, use a good amount of white space all around it. There should be enough blank space around the QR code that a smart phone can easily scan it without picking up any text or other images on the same page. Otherwise, it won’t be able to read the code properly.
  5. Bold Contrast.  The QR Code generator allows you to choose a custom colour for your QR Code. While this may tempt your creative side to go all crazy with the design element, you want to insure there is a strong colour contrast between the QR Code and the background it is being applied to. This way, the reader will pick up all the image details in the code. For example, do not use a yellow QR Code on a green or beige background because there is not much contrast between these colours and the code reader may have problems reading it. In fact, we recommend that you avoid light colours altogether. The best combination is a black QR Code on a white page (or visa versa).
  6. Always include a call to action, like “SCAN THIS CODE”, which gives people specific instructions on what to do with your QR Code, such as – “Scan the code to LIKE our Facebook page”, or “Scan this code to get a free dessert”, or even “Scan this code to get the team schedule”. It doesn’t always have to be a free giveaway but whatever the purpose of your QR Code, do not assume that people will know what to do.
  7. If the QR Code is taking the reader to a website, you will want to include the URL in type as well, so as not to prevent non-smart phone users from getting in on the promotion. Since you are sending people to a website through their smart phone, be sure your website is smart phone friendly or re-directs visitors to a mobile version of your website.
    1. (Need a quick, affordable mobile website to compliment your main website, contact me for more information)
  8. Make the offer compelling enough that people will want to scan it.  Don’t make it too long or use a lot of conditions, like – “Scan this code for 25% off when you spend $500 or more..bla bla bla” Remember the KISS principal (Keep It Simple Sweetie). A direct offer like “Scan Here for your free dessert” is perfect!
  9. When deciding how and where to use QR Codes, be creative. There is no limit to how many QR Codes you can create or the number of places it can be used to generate leads, promote your business, increase visitor traffic to landing pages on your website and gain higher sales. Place them on all your printed signage, business cards and online to connect your websites and social media channels. The sky is the limit!
  10. TEST! Before you spend time and effort on printing or promotions, be sure to test your QR Code to be sure it is reading correctly. If you plan to use a QR code in any print ads and your printer is low in ink or has a glitch, it may not print the QR Code properly or pick up all the details. If you don’t have a smart phone to test your new QR Code, find someone that does. Testing beforehand could potentially save you a lot of time, money and embarrassment later.

Before you begin, be sure to read our full article “QR Codes – what is a QR code and how to use a QR Code” then you will be ready to generate your own QR Codes.



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