QR codes are a clever and beautifully simple tech - which don't cost a bean. Everyone holds a scanner (phone) in their hand, ready to interact with the next QR code they encounter.
QR codes are widely used in the far east, but up until recently uptake in the western world was slow. Although not entirely obvious why this was the case, there are a few possible reasons.
It may have been due to QR codes being seen as a gimmick, a magic trick of sorts. Their use reserved to concepts or apps looking for that extra wow-factor.
Or perhaps it was because of practicalities. We must remember that not long ago, QR readers weren't a default within camera apps on smartphones - a definite barrier for use.
However, times are a changin!
Take a look at this google trends chart of interest over time for the term ‘QR Code' within the United Kingdom.
This recent massive uptick in awareness of QR codes can be directly attributed to the UK government's ‘Test & trace’ scheme. This scheme uses QR codes placed at the entrances to buildings to track peoples’ movements, in order to reduce the spread of disease. As a side-effect, this has accelerated the usage and visibility of QR codes to such an extent that nearly everyone now knows what to do with them.
But given all this, QR codes are still under-utilised within the ecommerce marketing world (in the west anyway!). This is less due to marketeers knowing that the technology exists, and more to do with them not knowing exactly how much can be done with a QR code.
So with that in mind, here are a few benefits that QR codes bring to marketeers. We've also included a few examples of how you can use QR codes to improve your SMARTSlip, maximising customer retention.
Benefits of QR Codes
- QR Codes can turn a physical interaction into a digital experience. Closing the loop and getting your customer’s back to your website is what QR codes were born to do. And the best bit? Since iOS incorporated a QR scanner into the iPhone camera in 2017, most smartphones no longer require an app to do this.
- They’re personal. QR's can be dynamically unique to each individual, triggering personalised mobile web journeys. Give your customer the experience which best relates to what they’ve bought (or not) so far.
- QR code usage is fully trackable, with any analytics platform. No longer reserved for just your digital campaigns, now you can also know your ROI from any physical media.
QR codes clearly have a lot more to offer than just being a gimmick, and so here are a few ways in which you can include QR codes in your SMARTSlip to maximise customer retention. (If you don’t use SMARTSlip, then these also work well for any printed in-parcel media!)
Email Sign Up
Getting customers onto your mailing list isn’t as easy as it was pre GDPR. Take advantage of SMARTSlip’s 100% delivery rate as an opportunity to grow this valuable asset to your brand. By using a QR code to direct them to your sign-up form, you can make the process as frictionless as possible for your customers.
Refer A Friend
Although referral scheme brands have great ways to make this process as easy as possible, SMARTSlip also offers another way to make your Refer A Friend campaigns as effective as possible. Due to SMARTSlip being a physical item, it is the perfect thing for your customers to pass onto their friends and family. Streamline this process further by including a QR code as opposed to a long URL on the SMARTSlip.
If a picture says 1000 words, then how many is a video worth? Instructions, bonus content - whatever you can think of really, these are all far easier for your customers to access when all they need to do is scan a QR code on their SMARTSlip.
Rather than displaying a generic URL on their SMARTSlip, give your customers a personalised experience with a dynamic deep URL - taking them straight to their unique offers and rewards. Storing this within a QR code hides what can be a potentially lengthy URL, in a neat barcode box.
It is vital that you turn as many of your first time shoppers into true ‘customers’. Redirect first time shoppers back to your store with a QR code on their SMARTSlip, perhaps even offering extra reason to shop again such as a one off discount or similar.
Instead of the returns process being a manual, paper-based process, why not enable your customers to enter the returns information into an on-brand portal accessed by scanning a QR code on their SMARTSlip? Well that’s exactly what SMARTReturns does, and more. To learn more about SMARTReturns, click here.