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Mistakes to Avoid When Using QR Codes

QR Code Scanner
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QR codes are useful because their unique, scannable patterns can be visualized and translated to a desired link or webpage.

Mistakes to Avoid When Using QR Codes 

First invented in 1994, QR (quick response) codes have remained popular thanks to their value in modern marketing and online businesses. Their unique, scannable designs make it easier for people to navigate web pages and discrete URLs with just the QR code scanners on their phones.

QR codes aren’t perfect though, and if used incorrectly might be useless to those who need them to spread their links as far and wide as possible. This can be an issue for brands that need to make their content as widely and immediately accessible as possible.

To avoid such issues, steer clear of the following when using QR codes to share your necessary information.

  1. Design faults

QR codes are useful because their unique, scannable patterns can be visualized and translated to a desired link or webpage. This process relies on a QR code scanner being able to clearly detect the distinctive bicolored pattern of little squares or modules.

If this doesn’t occur, the code will not be accepted, or it might lead to the wrong URL. There are a few things to check in your code before using it to prevent these issues.

  • Size your code properly. QR codes come in several sizes, each containing a certain equal number of rows and columns of modules. Ensure that your code is small enough to occupy limited space but large enough to be scanned from a slight distance.
  • Make sure that the modules are in contrasting colors. If the two colors look similar, the scanner will not be able to differentiate between them, even if they differ in the tones.
  • Don’t make the codes transparent. If a QR code is placed on a window or other see-through surface, making it transparent as well can hamper its detectability if the background is as dark or light as the opaque parts.
  • Avoid printing on glossy surfaces. Add your QR code on a surface that doesn’t reflect too much light, as even the slightest bright spot can ruin your code or interfere with the scanner’s software.
  • Avoid rounded or uneven surfaces. QR code scanners can only detect 2D entities, so make sure that your code is on as flat a surface as possible.
  1. Being too creative

Adding logos or images to QR codes is a helpful feature for companies to customize their codes for promotional purposes while enhancing the uniqueness of their barcode. But while doing so, make sure that the image is not obstructing any of the modules.

Plus, avoid placing your codes in places where they couldn’t be scanned in an effort to flex your company’s reach and resources. No one wants to stop in the middle of a highway to scan a billboard, nor should they have to pause a TV ad where you’ve advertised your code.

  1. Improper usage

QR code scanning software is generally phone-based and has to redirect the user to an online site or page, which requires a working internet connection. If your links are only functional for desktop use, or you’ve circulated your code in an area with no online access, it will be useless.

Make sure to 

  1. a) only add links to websites that are mobile-friendly, and 
  2. b) that the area where the code is available to your target audience has access to Wi-Fi facilities.
  1. Not double-checking

When using QR codes for marketing, the success of your campaign relies on the code successfully and universally redirecting users to your page through any scanning app. For that reason, make sure to check for yourself if that is the case.

If you send out your code without following this step and it turns out that either the link is wrong or the code isn’t working for some reason, consider your campaign in ruin. So double-check for this issue beforehand and replace faulty codes with new ones.

  1. Ignoring dead links

URLs can be subject to deletion, unavailability, or domain changes, and if your website has to garner enough traffic, you must regularly check if the links are dead or need updating. Not ensuring this step can be a roadblock in your marketing expedition.

If you cannot regularly monitor each link, supplement your code with a helpline to contact in the event of a dead link.

Best of luck

QR codes are a massive help to corporations as well as individuals who know how to use them. But in marketing as with other things, your brand is only as strong as your weakest link. Similarly, QR codes aren’t foolproof, and simple mistakes like the ones we’ve discussed can be a significant chink in the armor.

Nonetheless, with proper consideration, fixes, and hindsight, most of these issues can be easily solved, and you can still make your content available to anyone and everyone armed with a QR code scanner.

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