I assume you are looking to generate QR Codes for a marketing campaign or an operational use case. However, you are not sure how to use a QR Code generator.
In this article, we will show you exactly how to use a QR Code generator and help you create that perfect QR Code that is both functional and visually-appealing.
A. What you should know beforehand
Before you start generating a QR Code, there are two things you should know:
1. Which QR Code you’ll need to create
Depending on the content you want to share with the target audience via a QR Code, there are more than 20 types of QR Codes you can create. The common ones are Website URL, PDF, Google Maps, Vcard, and Text. See the entire list of QR Codes.
Once you’ve browsed all the options, finalize the QR Code type that best suits your needs.
2. What QR Code functionalities you need
The next thing you need to know is what features to add to your QR Code. Unlike barcode, a lot can be achieved using QR Codes such as the features mentioned below are popular with marketers:
a. Editing content
You can edit the content (URL, PDF, Image, Audio, etc.) of a QR Code anytime without the need to replace the QR Code. For example, with the same QR Code, you can show Website A first and then Website B after a few weeks.
Note that to add this feature, you need to ensure that a QR Code is ‘dynamic’.
b. Tracking scans
Did you know that with QR Codes, you can also track scanning activity. This means number of scans by date, city, country, and device. If you are a marketer and these metrics are important to you, make sure the QR Code generator you choose has this feature.
Note that scan tracking and analytics is possible only with Dynamic QR Codes.
c. Creating Static or Dynamic QR Codes
QR Codes can be made ‘Static’ or ‘Dynamic’. As mentioned in the previous points, Dynamic QR Codes allow content editing and scan tracking. However, as these are feature-rich QR Codes, QR Code service providers typically charge a subscription fees.
Static QR Codes are basic QR Codes (just like barcodes) that are non-editable and non-trackable. These do not require an ongoing subscription to work.
d. Designing QR Codes
Unlike barcodes, the design of QR Codes can be personalized with colors, patterns, and images.
If you want to make your QR Codes visually-appealing to the target audience, ensure that the QR Code generator has a design feature.
e. Creating landing pages
Some marketers need QR Codes to redirect to promotional content (such as offer page, more information about a product, etc.). However, they do not have a website for such pages.
A few QR Code service providers (such as Scanova) give the option of generating mobile-optimized webpages (called landing pages). On these pages, you can add the content of your choice (text, images, etc.).
f. Lead generation
While scan tracking feature allows you to track number of scans, you will still now know who exactly scanned your QR Code. If this information is important to you, you need a feature called ‘Lead Generation’.
Learn more about Lead Generation via QR Codes.
3. Which is the right QR Code generator
Based on the type of QR Code you need and features important to you, you will need to figure out which QR Code generator is right for you.
Here is a comparison chart of the popular QR Code generators:
B. How to use a QR Code Generator
In this section, we will outline the basic steps on how to use a QR Code generator. There are some good options available but we will choose Scanova for this example.
Let’s assume that you wish to create a QR Code that:
- Redirects to a website
- Allows editing of the website URL anytime
- Can be tracked
- Has a design with logo
A QR Code that looks something like this:
To create a QR Code like this, follow the steps below:
1. Go to Scanova and register for a 14-day free trial
2. When you are logged in, click on the ‘Website URL’ option from the dashboard
3. On the page that opens, paste the link of the webpage you wish to share and click on ‘Create QR Code’
4. A window will open where you can
(i) Create or assign a campaign for your QR Code
(ii) Name your QR Code
(iii) Choose a type—Static and Dynamic
If you choose to create a Dynamic QR Code, You can also add other advanced features such as
(i) Password-protection: Use this feature to secure your QR Code’s content with a password. Only users you share your password with can view your QR Code’s content
(ii) Capture leads: Use this option to setup Lead Generation
(iii) Customize Short URL: Use this option to customize how Scanova’s dynamic URL will appear to the user, when the QR Code is scanned
5. Once you’ve made the desired choices, click on ‘Save’
6. Your QR Code has been generated and you will see three design options—Standard black-and-white, Custom with Logo, and Custom with Background
7. As we need to generate a QR Code with a logo design, click on ‘Customize’ under the ‘Custom with Logo’ column
8. On the page that opens, you can
(i) Change the color and pattern of the data modules and eyes
(ii) Add and edit the position and size of your logo
(iii) Add a background image
(iv) Add error correction—This ensures that your QR Code remains scannable even if damaged by up to 30%
(iv) Save your design as a template
Also read: How to create a Logo QR Code
9. Once you have designed your QR Code, click on ‘Update’ to save your design
10. You can now download your QR Code in the image format you need—PNG, JPG, SVG, EPS, PS, PDF. Click on the ‘Download’ button to view a drop-down with the list of image formats and click on the format of your choice to download your QR Code
Note: Always remember to scan and test your QR Code before downloading it.
11. Once your QR Code has been downloaded, add them to your print media creatives.
Scanova also allows users to track scans of their QR Codes. Tracking scans is only possible with Dynamic QR Code, to track scans:
1. Go to Scanova and click on ‘Analytics’ from the top navigation bar
2. In the page that opens
(i) Select the name of your campaign
(ii) Select the name of your QR Code
(iii) Select a timeline and click on ‘Apply’
(iv) Click on ‘View Insights’ to view info graphics of your QR Code’s scan analytics
You can download the entire scan analytics report in PDF and CSV formats.
You now know how to use a QR Code generator to create the perfect QR Code like an expert. Go to Scanova and create your very first QR Code now.
Create your first QR Code