QR Codes and Local Business: They Just Go Together

By | April 8, 2011

This week, I was in a children’s store in my local downtown shopping district. At the checkout, I noticed a tiny QR code (about 1/4″ square) on the packaging of a pencil topper we were buying. I was curious if it would scan at that size, so I took out my phone and scanned it.

The shop owner asked what I was doing, and when I showed him what was happening on my phone, his eyes turned wide as saucers.

“That could really help me, couldn’t it?” he said.

I started to launch into a speech about QR codes on window clings, on business cards, and on direct mail, but he didn’t give me time to finish. He immediately grasped the concept. “I could put it in my window, and if someone came by and I was closed, they could scan the code and see my hours, right? Oh! Oh! I could put on there any discounts I’m offering, too! I could put them on business cards, and —  and — and . . . ”

His mouth could barely keep up with the ideas exploding in his head.

He asked where he could buy a license to create QR codes, and when I told him they were free and that they were as easy to add to print as any other image, you should have seen the reaction.

“That’s fantastic!” he exclaimed. “I had no idea they even existed. This is unbelievable! Think of everything we can do with them! Especially us small guys. We need all the help we can get!”

I wrote down the URLs for a few resources for creating and learning about codes, and as I was leaving the store, I wondered how many printers are taking advantage of the opportunity offered by local businesses like his. Think about the opportunities for window clings, point-of-sale displays, local direct mail, business cards, corporate identity, and more.

That QR codes gives small businesses an easy way to go mobile is exciting to small shop owners. It makes them feel that they can compete — at least in one small way — in the world of the big brand marketers. It also gives you the opportunity to upsell them on mobile websites, too.

Are you knocking on doors? If not, QR codes could give you a great door opener in every local shop in your downtown district!

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5 thoughts on “QR Codes and Local Business: They Just Go Together

  1. Jim Olsen

    Heidi: Great story. You might want to “link” it to LinkIn’s “Outside the box” blog in the QR Group postings.


  2. Larry McInerney


    As you commented, “I wrote down the URLs for a few resources for creating and learning about codes”, why didn’t you include these in your article?


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