Learning to Love QR Codes

Cary, NC – Ever see those little boxes with a bunch of jaggy patterns in them? They’re called QR codes and they connect the world of print to the internet. This represents a significant opportunity for businesses and entrepreneurs.

QR Codes

QR codes are becoming common around Cary. You’ll see (or notice) more and more of them because they are a helpful little bit of technology for everyday life. QR stands for “Quick Response.”

Let’s say you see a sign or an ad in a magazine that offers a coupon. Imagine 20% off at your favorite restaurant. But how are you supposed to take action? Take the sign? Rip out the ad?

If the printed material contains a QR Code, you can scan it with your smartphone and it will take you to a webpage containing the coupon.

Realtors are using QR Codes on their for-sale signs, linking people to more information about the property online. People are putting them on business cards.

Think of QR Codes as a bridge between printed materials and the web.

QR Code Smartphone Readers

Lots of QR Code Readers are available for all different smartphones – iPhone, Android and Windows. Many of the apps are free.

They all use the smartphone’s built-in camera as the scanner. Just tap on the app and it loads up the camera with a scanner going across the screen. Hold it over the QR Code. Shazzam – you’re redirected to a web page. You can usually save it or bookmark it or send it to yourself as an email.

I like QR Reader from Tap Media for the iPhone. It’s free and works well. An upgrade is available for 99¢ but I haven’t felt the need.

QR Code Generators

So where can you get a QR code for your business? Simple: a QR code generator!

Lots of QR generators are available online. Some are better than others. A few want to charge you for usage. As they say in New York, fuggedaboutit.

My favorite QR code generator is GoQR.me. It’s simple, quick, free and easy. It generates a big QR code that works anywhere.

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Hal Goodtree is the Publisher of CaryCitizen and more than 25 other blogs. He is a resident member of Cary Innovation Center. This article was adapted from CaryCitizen.com.