Uses of QR Codes

Uses of QR Codes

Generally, QR codes are used most commonly in the marketing industry. QR marketing has proved to be an extremely effective and inexpensive method of advertising. The possibilities for uses and ways to share QR codes with the public are endless. The simplicity of using quick response codes can benefit not only the company but the consumers as well. Technology is continually creating new techniques and uses of QR codes, even social networking websites have begun to use social qr codes as their popularity has increased. With so many free qr codes and inexpensive customized qr codes, one can only imagine what the future holds for future uses of QR codes. 

Some of the most common current uses for QR codes:

“For Sale” Signs

The use of QR codes are very popular in the real estate industry. A QR code can be placed on a “for sale” sign that will automatically link the potential buyer to further information about the property, as well as real estate company contact information. This can save a lot of hassle for both real estate companies and buyers alike. The QR code alone can answer a variety of questions, such as, asking price, square footage, amount of bedrooms and bathrooms, etc. Knowing this information without going through the process of actually contacting the real estate company prevents a lot of unnecessary phone calls and inquiries, which gives the interested party a chance to quickly realize if they are interested in the property and saves a lot of time for real estate agents that find themselves answering such questions about properties only to realize the party loses interest after hearing the square footage or realizing they are simply not enough bedrooms. QR codes are inexpensive to add to real estate/for sale signs and have proved to be well worth the already small monetary investment. 


Using QR codes on groceries is a fairly new phenomenon that is turning out very well for everyone. For grocery use, a QR code is placed on prepackaged foods in the grocery store. The code can link to different information based on the product. Generally, the QR code leads to detailed nutritional information or more commonly, a list of recipes that include the food as an ingredient. The recipe link is quickly gaining popularity as it makes meal planning so much simpler than setting aside time to plan out ingredient lists for recipes before heading to the store. It is also a great help for those impulse buys and can ensure that important foods for recipes are not forgotten or accidentally forgotten on a traditional grocery list. Often times, QR codes in the food industry, also include restaurant qr codes that give consumer discounts when the QR codes are used. 

Bus Stops & Train Stations

QR codes at bus and train stations may be one of the most useful methods of QR codes. A QR code is printed on a bus or train schedule. This code can be scanned at any time and instantly pops up a bus or train schedule, including real-time information. This can inform travelers of delay times and give them the option of knowing if they have the time to wait for the bus or train or if they should choose a different method of transportation to arrive at their destination on time. Bus and train QR codes have had huge success in large cities, such as New York and Chicago and seem to be rapidly gaining popularity in other cities. 


Maps, much like the bus and train station QR codes can be invaluable at a time of travel. QR codes can be placed on a variety of signs or billboards which will instantly pop up a local map showing where certain attractions are in proximity to the sign or giving history and statistical information about the location. QR code maps act much like a GPS, aiding in pointing the traveler in the correct direction based on their current location and informing users about the location at the same time. 


Liquor QR codes work in a way similar to that of the grocery QR codes. When the QR code is scanned on a liquor bottle, recipe information for cocktails and other adult beverages instantly appears on the smart-phone screen. Other times the QR code will link to information about where and when the alcohol was created, this is mostly popular with certain bottles of wine and champagne. It has also been seen that a QR code will instantly share safety tips for responsible drinking. This is a positive message that discourages under-age drinking and drunk driving. QR codes are also a good way to remind people of the fact that certain products are intended for use by adults only. 


One of the newer uses for QR codes is through use on invitations. QR codes can be used on an invitation for just about anything; weddings, birthday parties, sporting events, graduation ceremonies, business meetings, etc. A person can R.S.V.P easily by scanning the QR code included with the invitation. This saves a lot of hassle for both parties, as well as money in lieu of traditional through the mail R.S.V.P cards. Environmentalists are also thrilled with the use of QR codes as it saves a lot of paper, which in turn saves a lot of trees. 


More and more magazines are featuring QR codes on advertisement pages. The QR codes generally link to a website where the featured item can be purchased or a website where the reader can quickly learn more information about the product they saw in the magazine. This has proven to be an effective method of advertising for popular magazines. Often times QR codes in magazines provide consumer discounts to increase interest in products and increase the likelihood that consumers will use these codes. 

Business Cards

Another very common use of QR codes is to feature them on business cards. The traditional information is still included in text but generally the QR code will lead the person who scans the code to additional websites or contact information. Seeing as many people store contact numbers in their cell phones these days, instead of on paper, this makes the process and likelihood of a person actually saving the number on the business card much more likely. If they have the number saved, the chances that they will call upon a person’s services are greater which leads to increased business. 

Television Ads

The use of QR codes in television ads is used as an attempt to make television an interactive activity. Commercials feature QR codes in attempt to get audiences more involved in the product or television show. If links to the television program, network, or commercial product are shown during the viewing, it increases the chances that viewers will be interested enough to seek further information about what they are seeing. If this process is as simple as just scanning a code with a cellular phone, the likelihood that viewers will visit the website drastically increase. 


Everyone has heard about or personally experienced the loss of luggage during travel. Generally, luggage tags with owner contact information is attached to the luggage itself before traveling, however sometimes these tags can come lose during baggage handling leaving them unidentifiable if they become lost. QR codes can be the solution to this problem. Luggage can have a QR code printed on the actual luggage itself or can have several stickers with QR codes placed on both the inside and outside of the luggage. This ensures that the owner’s can be notified if their luggage is misplaced. 

Additional Information:

Creative Uses of QR Codes

Best Business Uses of QR Codes

Field Guide to QR Codes: National Association of Realtors

QR Codes for Buses

Quick Response Code Key Ring for Lost Keys

QR Codes on Maps

Quick Response Code Coupons

Grocery Shopping with QR Codes

QR Codes in the Classroom

QR Codes in Marketing