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QR codes may be widely recognized in the mobile marketing world as having a tremendous amount of potential – the majority of which hasn’t even been identified yet – but at the same time, the future of these two dimensional barcodes is becoming shaky, and it may only continue to decline unless the right action is taken to rescue them.

Over the last few years, QR codes have made some headway into popularity, including the use by large corporations such as Google, which is highly involved in mobile. However, the painful truth is that they have not been adopted nearly as quickly as predicted on the consumer side of things.

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There are three primary reasons that this has failed to occur, and these must be resolved if QR codes are to make it into the future.

  • Every barcode requires the download of a different app software, depending on the type of code. For example, more traditional QR codes are different from Microsoft Tags (even though Microsoft has embraced QR codes now) and other variations. A standard is required in the industry so that a single app can be used to scan all of them. It will be even more advantageous if this app would be preloaded onto the phone.
  • Businesses should be more aware of what the code is linking to. For example, linking to a site that is not mobile optimized is a situation for failure. Most industry professionals recommend linking to a mobile coupon to have a higher conversion rate.
  • Many consumers are finding the codes confusing due to there are too many variations of the barcodes.  This does more harm than good due to the public is having a hard time recognizing them which hurts the ability to feel comfortable with scanning.

Some might even throw in that the barcode is sometimes too difficult to scan due to size or a steady hand. This consumer has never had a problem scanning a code due to this but have found that some businesses have placed them in areas that make it more difficult to even see, like a billboard or behind some obstruction. This problem seems to lie more in placement and should be thought out before putting money into.

With these simple corrections businesses will see higher conversion rates with QR Code marketing.

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