If you’re not familiar with QR (Quick Response) codes, they’re similar to the barcodes used by retailers to track inventory and price products at the point of sale. The key difference between the two is the amount of data they can hold or share. QR codes are two-dimensional (2D) matrix barcodes that can hold thousands of alphanumeric characters of information.
When you scan or read a QR code with your iPhone, Android or other camera-enabled Smartphone, you can link to digital content on the web; activate a number of phone functions including email, IM and SMS; and connect the mobile device to a web browser.
There’s no limit to how, or even how much, you can share with QR codes. While a video or landing page is easily shared, you could go further and share an entire eBook and even multiple pieces of content that share a common link. QR codes enhance both your search engine and social media optimization so you can increase traffic to those searchable objects to further optimize them by encouraging more sharing.
QR Codes can be placed almost anywhere including business cards, brochures, packaging menus etc. and can link to:
- Installation instructions
- Sources for replacement parts and service
- Directions to your business
- The process for hiring your professional services
- Valuable coupons and special offers
- Recommendations for complementary products and services
- Free mp3 downloads
- Customer feedback forms
Example United Airlines – Many of the major airlines are now using 2D codes as digital boarding passes. I recently learned that by the end of 2011 all carriers will be required to provide this service for international flights.