We see the use of QR codes more and more in advertising. They’re popping up in magazines, on public signs and on products. I even saw one on the door of the post office today. But are people really using them? A recent study says yes, especially as people are learning more about the new technology. In 2011 almost 4,500 of these black interactive symbols appeared in ads and on editorial pages. If you look across the year, January began with 3.6% of ads containing codes and December ended with 8%.
Despite this growth, however, research shows there is still room to improve. First, it seems consumers are not so quick to scan. Perhaps because it takes a little extra effort, users don’t know what’s in it for them, or they just don’t know what a QR code is. Well advertisers found when they describe the benefit the user will receive (free content, coupons, etc.) they have more success.
Second, not enough advertisers are using them.The study found that the more QR codes there are in one publication, the more likely they are to be used. The theory being once your phone is out, you’ll continue to use it as you read and scanning becomes a pattern as you flip pages.
It will be interesting to see this technology continue to grow as more people catch up to it. Whether it’s a deal, a link to a product page or something new to learn, next time you see a QR code, scan it!