The world has gone through a major digital transformation in the past few months. The accelerated pace of the digital journey has brought on new habits and behaviours, which are especially evident within the retail industry. According to an article from Retail Insider titled The Rise of the Unassuming QR Code and How it Could Change the Food Industry: OP-ED, “QR codes are everywhere now. Even though they have been around for almost three decades, the pandemic has allowed this technology to become a mainstream data sharing solution…Before the pandemic, we used them a few times a year on average, tops. Now, most Canadians will use a QR code almost every week, and in some cases, daily.”
As the pandemic wave hit and still continues to affect businesses globally, the retail industry’s appetite to expand digitally keeps growing. The path to success is via technology, and with automation providing simple solutions to traditional mundane tasks, it is now, more than ever, essential to join the digital revolution.
One of these simple solutions is QR codes! Let’s explore the history, presence, and future of QR codes and how our Digital Smart Labels™ have implemented them and continue to innovate features with them.
The invention of QR codes
UPC (Universal Product Code) codes have been around since the 1970s, and it wasn’t until 1994 that the Quick Response Code, aka QR code, was invented. The Quick Response code is exactly what the name stands for—automatic, quick, and responsive!
Invented by a Japanese automotive company called Denso Wave, the goal was to simplify the larger data storage capacity for the automotive industry. Little did anyone know that the QR code would gradually become the ‘preferred solution’ across more industries than just the one. Today, there are multiple informative purposes for it, and our Digital Smart Labels™ have continued to implement them.
How do they work?
Now, you might be wondering how a matrix-looking design of information holds much larger capacities of data. In the simplest terms, it is a type of barcode that’s readable and/or scannable by a device such as a smartphone. Easily identifiable by the 3 squares on the outside of the code matrix, the 3 position detection patterns enable high-speed reading, while guarding against negative background interference.
In the most basic terms, the pixels one sees on a QR code stores information which once scanned leads to an external link. For example, our featured image above showcases a Digital Smart Label™ with a QR code beside one of our many Indigenous art pieces in the building. Once you scan the QR code on the Digital Smart Label™, the stored information transfers you to the Kipling Gallery website where you can browse an array of original art by Canadian artists. Within seconds and one click, the QR technology enables that connection between the physical world and the digital one.
QR coding and Digital Smart Labels™
According to an article from Canadian Grocer titled QR codes are having a moment and it can change the food industry, “The pandemic has literally given QR codes a second wind. A recent survey by Dalhousie University estimates that about three in five Canadians have used QR codes at a restaurant or in a grocery store in the last month for payment services, marketing purposes and other industry aspects.”
The awareness of digital and technological advancements and acceleration throughout and after the pandemic is very evident. From one store to the next, customers and retailers are adjusting their shopping habits and creating the new norms of today. As digital tools grow to be a must within the retail industry, our Digital Smart Labels™ have also been trailblazing and helping retailers simplify their day-to-day operations as we all climb back up from the downfalls of the pandemic.
With 10-year battery life, an array of options when it comes to colour, fonts, and sizes, and dynamic pricing and marketing, Digital Smart Labels™ are much more than your classic price label. Add a QR code and explore customizable options such as informational content, discount links, boosting brand identity, logo advertising, mobile payments, social media networks, scan tracking, foot traffic increase, product knowledge, and much more!
Today and tomorrow
Living in the age of information constantly has us on the go. With the pandemic accelerating the pace of the digital age and technological advancements, it is beyond necessary to keep up in order to remain relevant, competitive, and successful.
Combining the solution of QR codes alongside our Digital Smart Labels™ within your store or business not only helps simplify operations, but also improves the everyday customer experience! A customer’s shopping experience nowadays is what drives sales, and therefore meeting customers’ needs should be a priority for all retailers.
Here are some cool ways to incorporate QR codes on Digital Smart Labels™ and creatively interact with your customers:
- Provide detailed product information with a link to the website
- Enhance retail marketing by linking sale coupons or discounts
- Input a newsletter, exclusive deals, and or even a promotional sign-up link for your customers
- Link your store’s social media accounts for your customers to connect with
- Link to a fun customer draw of prizes
Between cost-effectiveness, versatility, and quantifiable results and benefits, the possibilities are endless. Integrating Digital Smart Labels™ with QR codes, your place of business can be transformed with these game-changing tactics. Stay ahead of the competition and call us today to find out more about how Digital Smart Labels™ are revolutionizing the retail industry.