What are QR codes?
QR stands for ‘quick response’. A QR code is essentially a two-dimensional optical label containing information about an item that can be scanned in a split second using a mobile device with a special scanner. Most modern smartphones come with integrated QR code readers already installed.
Each QR code can store up to 7089 digits, or 4296 characters. They are most often used to store internet addresses, and either send data to a specific destination or redirect users to a landing page, data capture form, or other kind of digital asset.
There are two types of QR codes: static and dynamic. Static codes are fixed and cannot be changed once they have been generated, whereas dynamic codes can be edited multiple times, making them the more flexible choice for businesses.
How are QR codes used in retail?
In a retail capacity, you’ll often find QR codes scattered across garment labels, custom swing tickets (including clothing swing tags), and even larger collateral, like leaflets, flyers, banners, and POS graphics.
They provide contemporary retailers with a quick, easy and extremely cost-effective way of connecting consumers with different brand assets and marketing incentives. What’s more, they can be tracked, which means retail companies can store and interpret tonnes more behavioural data that can help to inform their future marketing efforts.
Struggling to think of ways you could include QR codes in your branding and merchandising strategy? Take a look at the ideas below or get in touch with the team here at Hallmark for even more advice and inspiration!
You could use your QR codes to:
Drive traffic to your website (or a particular landing page)
It’s much easier to scan a QR code than enter a web address into a browser app, after all.
Connect the user with your social media
You can send the customer straight through to your profiles to encourage them to follow your accounts and begin engaging with your content.
Support an online checkout process
Embracing the trend for multi-channel shopping, QR codes can allow your shoppers to browse in-store, then purchase the products they like online and get them delivered directly to their home.
Send the customer straight through to customer service
If a customer has a question about one of our items or wants to chat with a member of your team, you can set up your QR code so it sends them straight through to a contact form or another means of getting in touch with your business. These kinds of codes are especially useful when they’re included on the printed swings tags inside your garments, as your customers will be able to find and access them long after they have left your store.
Deliver discounts and deals
You can, of course, still use traditional printed materials to advertise your special offers. But if your deals change regularly, it’s much easier to ensure your customers can access the most up to date offers straight from one of your dynamic QR codes.
Sign the user up to a loyalty programme
Forget taking your customers’ details at the till or getting them to go to an online form – you can increase sign-ups by allowing them to join your loyalty scheme directly from their mobiles.
Encourage app downloads
Got an ecommerce app? Make it easy for your customers to get their hands on it by advertising a QR code that takes them straight to your platform in their preferred app store.
Have some fun!
Some retailers – and many other B2C businesses, in fact – are assigning games, quizzes and other interactive content to their QR codes to entertain their customers and deepen their connections with the people who buy from them.