The adoption rate of QR codes among consumers has influenced the way they research and purchase products. Through QR codes, consumers are able to scan the stellar qualities of a product, as well as scan the reviews of the product, access websites easily, identify their favorite brands, redeem coupons and use QR codes as a mode of payment.
1. Scanning Stellar Qualities/Reviews of a Product
- Marketers understand that consumers have a short concentration span and this explains why more consumers are turning to QR codes for short videos. As opposed to reading, which has memory retention of 10%, watching videos holds 95% of memory retention. Consumers use QR codes to track down the stellar features of a product.
- Studies show that 90% of consumers read reviews online before deciding to buy a product, while 88% of shoppers treat reviews as personal recommendations.
- Brands that encourage reviews are not only giving their customers a platform to air their opinions, but also a platform for future business reference. Through QR codes, therefore, consumers are in a better position to comb through reviews and products before making a decision.
2. Fast and Easy Access to Websites
- Through QR codes, consumers can easily access websites, anytime and anywhere. Having easy access to websites makes it easier for consumers to scroll through companies’ profiles and websites, as well as access the contents and like or leave comments on the websites.
- Consumers save time and resources by using QR codes to quickly access portals to the right websites, as opposed to typing in long URL addresses. Through laser focus, consumers can access landing pages that match the intent of the content they are looking for.
- Easy access to websites has made QR codes remain relevant through the years. In 2011, for instance, over 20 million people with mobile phones scanned a QR code in the U.S. Most of the scanned codes were to access websites.
- Studies indicate that 34% of smartphone users in the U.S have in the past year used QR codes to access a website.
- Apple’s iOS 11 release has made it even easier for iPhone users to browse websites using a QR code, as it directly opens up in the Safari web browser. As a result, QR codes have escalated in the American market as 43% of mobile phone users in the U.S use an iPhone.
- Other than Europe and the U.S, more Asian countries are today using QR codes to access websites.
3. Identifying Product Packaging
- Studies show that 7 out of 10 consumers are keen on finding brands with the right packaging. Consumers, especially millennials, will sometimes make a buying decision based on a brand’s product packaging.
- Through QR codes, millennial consumers can find products of their favorite brands through customized QR codes. More so, customers can scan the code and view more features of their favorite brand.
- Seeing that a lot of millennials are on social media, 70% of them look up their favorite brands on social media platforms such as Instagram. With QR codes, consumers are able to find their favorite brands or new brands by following and engaging brand influencers on social media platforms, through Q&A.
4. Redeeming Coupons
- Consumers rely on QR codes to find information about upcoming events. Research estimates that by 2022, QR coupons redeemed through mobile devices will hit 5.3 billion.
- In 2017, mobile users redeemed approximately 1.3 billion coded coupons. Forecasts show that by 2022, over one billion mobile devices will be able to access coupons through QR codes. Currently, the surge in use is being influenced by built-in QR functionalities on not only Apple devices, but Android smartphones as well.
- Brands and agencies are using QR codes to reach consumers bypassing product information and engaging with them through incentives such as loyalty reward systems and other contests. Through QR codes, customers have continued to enjoy holistic experiences with brands.
5. Usage in Payment
- Over the past couple of years, QR code payment has become popular with companies such as Alipay, Walmart, and Amazon, making it possible for consumers to use QR code to make payments.
- Just like the U.S, India and China have caught on this mode of payment. In the first quarter of 2019, China recorded RMB 40.6 trillion in third-party mobile payments, ahead of the U.S and other parts of the world.
- It is estimated that QR code payment and other forms of mobile payments will expand to $1.3 trillion, from $348 billion, by 2022. Further, it is estimated that 11 million households in the U.S will scan a QR Code by the end of 2020.