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While they have not been widely adopted yet, QR codes present incredible usability and potential for businesses.  Connect with customers on social media sites; send them coupons or freebies that they can use immediately; provide them with more information on a billboard that they’ve just passed by; stick them on your product labels so interested customers can find out more about you; plan a scavenger hunt.  Whatever the specific application – and there are many – QR codes provide great functionality at an even better price.  Usually free, any business or individual can generate a QR code.  How do you start?

  1. Find a free QR code generator.  Kaywa is a popular choice, as are ZXing Project, BQRious, Delivr,, and Online Qr Lab.  These sites can help you generate QR codes from text, URLs, phone numbers, SMS, email, location, contact, and other information sources.
  2. Follow the onscreen prompts.  For Kaywa, for instance, you simply have to select the type of content (text, URL, etc.), enter that content, select the size for your QR code, and then the service will generate it for you.
  3. Test it.  Most of the services listed, as well as others available online, will offer a reader and allow you to test your code before taking it live.
  4. Share it.  Post your code on your website, blog, product labels, emails, mailers, or business cards.

You could stop here, which is where most businesses sit back and wait for customers to tell them how innovative and tech-savvy they are.  But take it another step further: one of the reasons why QR codes have not caught on is that consumers either think it’s too hard or that there’s nothing in it for them.  Show them otherwise; offer content of value, and make it a seamless experience. That’s the most important step.

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