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What is a QR code?

QR Code Generator - Create Your QR Code NowQR stands for Quick Response. QR codes are two-dimensional bar codes readable by dedicated QR bar code readers and most new camera phones. Wikipedia describes their appearance as “black modules arranged in a square pattern on a white background. The information encoded can be text, URL or other data.”
More importantly, a QR code can be customized to display all sorts of data to the user, such as web pages, video or slide show presentations. A QR code may input a company’s contact information directly into the database of the user’s phone. They can link to quote forms, petitions, shopping sites, tour schedules, important production or pricing information. You may need each of your labels to contain a unique QR code. Check out our variable data QR codes page for more info.

How to use a QR code?

Url QR CodeQR codes can be read on most new camera equipped mobile devices and phones through an internal software application. Many phones come with QR reader “apps” included as a part of the camera software, while others – like the iPhone and newer iPods require a QR reader “app” to be installed through the iTunes store. Free QR code reader applications are available for almost every camera equipped mobile device. “Reading” the bar code is as simple as pointing your camera directly at the code. The bar code is quickly “processed” and the phone or device will then display whatever information is embedded in the code. In short, the QR code is really a “more” button designed to show the user whatever you want them to see.

Why Use a QR code?

QR codes are now widely used on a variety of print media and can be seen on virtually everything from magazines, newspapers to transit stops and billboard advertising. QR codes offer a valuable opportunity to engage with potential customers while they are out and about, browsing or shopping. Imagine having an extra few moments to make that first impression. Many advertising campaigns have gone “viral” due to the effective placement of a QR Code.

QR Code Labels Video Link
Marketing with QR codes:

Since QR codes are customizable, sending a potential customer directly to a corporate website, a YouTube video, a download page, a petition, promotion, event or a newsletter sign up page is easy. Instant or SMS text messaging can also be initiated through a QR code making instant communication with a customer service representative possible. QR codes can offer simple discount or promotional information or connect people with a map to your location.

How to Use QR Code Labels: 15 Marketing Ideas
QR Code Marketing Ideas:
  • QR codes are now being used at bus stops and transit stations to show users schedule and reservation information.
  • QR codes can be used on interactive walking tours, displays or in galleries and museums.
  • QR code labels on flyers, handouts or business cards.
  • QR Codes are an excellent tool to enhance residential and commercial real estate listings. A QR code can send users to virtual walk-throughs and important listing information.
  • QR codes are great for building a subscriber list. Simply direct the user to an online sign-up form and let your mail service or auto-responder service take care of the rest.
  • QR code labels on product packaging can offer valuable additional information for the shopper – such as recipes, instructions, how-to’s, best uses for or testimonials from happy customers.
  • Producers of sustainable and organic products could help shoppers understand the health and environmental benefits through videos, images or direct comparisons between conventional and sustainable practices.
  • A QR code could connect a hungry shopper to a hotline for fast food delivery.
  • QR codes are used in place of name-tags at conferences and set up to supply virtual business card contact information.
  • Gain interest in your specialty food or beverage product by offering valuable entertainment ideas, serving and recipe information.
  • For a “greener” wedding or special event, invite your guest list and have them RSVP directly through a QR code.
  • QR code labels in elevator, public washroom or public transit ads. These could offer anything from discounts on dry cleaning service, taxi pick up, pizza delivery, concert or event information, restaurant and attractions etc.
  • QR codes are an excellent tool to gain community support and awareness through petitions and newsletters.
  • QR code labels on disposable coffee cups, water bottles and napkins.
  • Put a QR code on your office stationary and mailouts to provide your customers with change of address, discounts, sales or new product information.
How to Set Up QR Code Labels with Static Information

Types of QR Code Labels: How To Set Up Your Data

Label Print QR Code

QR Codes are a great marketing tool that can be used to communicate a variety of information. Familiarizing yourself with some of the basic QR code formatting standards will help you get the most out of your marketing and tracking efforts.

QR Code reading applications (such as the free QR code reader “app” for the iPhone) can vary in how they process the bits of data that make up a QR code. Although you can’t control exactly how an app might process the code, correct formatting will improve the chance that it will be scanable by the wide variety of handheld devices in use today.

Types of QR codes:

It’s easy to find free software online that will make a downloadable QR code from your requested data. We even have a link to a free QR code generator.

Some common types of QR codes are:

The browser of the scanning device will prompt you to open to a specified web page. This could be a company homepage, a YouTube video, a signup or sales page or an online petition.
For a URL QR code to scan, it’s important to include the “http://www.” followed by your web address when setting up your QR code.

Email addresses:
A QR code might include a contact email address. Prefacing the Email address with “mailto:” will prompt most QR code reader applications to send an e-mail to the address encoded in the QR code.


V-cards are essentially digital business cards that may contain company or individual contact information such as Email address, phone numbers or a street address. Scanning this type of QR code will automatically enter this contact info into the Contacts database within the device.

Calendar information:
Event dates and times can be encoded into a QR code. Scanning this will input the information into the devices Calendar or Scheduler application as a reminder.

Variable Data QR Codes:
If you need each of your labels to have a unique QR code – check out our page on variable QR code labels.

More information on standard formatting for actionable text can be found at the following link:

We have also produced a short video on Marketing with QR Code Labels that provides more information as well as many great QR Code marketing tips.

How to Set Up Variable Data QR Code Labels

If you need each of your QR code labels to be unique – for example you would like each QR code encoded with a different company name and URL – then you need variable data QR code labels. Though the set up for this product takes a little more time, a well-formatted Excel spreadsheet is all it takes for us to get started.

Variable QR code Labels: Character Specifications:

Set up your Excel spreadsheet (Microsoft .xls 2003 & earlier) with the variable data set up within a column in the order you wish the QR code labels to be printed. If you wish for your QR codes to contain multiple lines of information, additional columns of data can be provided in the same file for each additional line you wish to be encoded. All data from a particular row will be compiled into a single QR code. If multiple columns of information are provided, there needs to be data in every cell of each column.

As long as the characters are standard printable ascii (ascii codes 32-126) with the exception of ascii code 94 (carat symbol ^), the information from this file will be encoded exactly as it appears. In layman’s terms, if the character appears on your standard English keyboard, it should work fine (except the ^ symbol above the number 6). Extended ascii characters (such as “¥”, “©” and “ë”) require specialized formatting. A full list of printable and extended ascii codes can be found at http://www.ascii-code.com/. If you need to encode extended ascii characters, please contact Customer Service TOLL FREE at 1 866 474-1095 or use our Contact Form to request further details on the special formatting required.

Tips for Setting Up Your Variable Data:

Limit your data to as few characters as possible. For long URLs consider using a free URL shortening service such as bit.ly or goo.gl. The bit size of your QR code is determined by the number of characters in your data – so the more data there is to be encoded, the smaller the bit size which inevitably makes your QR code more difficult to scan at small sizes.

QR code scanability is dependent on multiple factors, some of which are controllable and others that are not. The uncontrollable factors lie mainly with the end user. For example, the quality of the camera used to scan the QR code and the distance the user is from the code when scanning. Because of this, we cannot guarantee that your QR code will always scan. It is important to ensure that your size, the amount of data encoded and colors are taken into consideration when building your QR code. For best results, we recommend the basic black code on a white background as it offers the greatest contrast.

An Example Excel File:

We have provided an example spreadsheet in the images below as a guideline. We encourage you to give us a call before setting up your spreadsheet as every data set is different. Our print specialists are here to help you, just call TOLL FREE 1 866-474-1095.

CALL TOLL FREE 1-866-474-1095

QR Code Generator - Create Your QR Code Now

Custom QR Code Label pricing is based on the size and shape, type of adhesive, number and type of of ink colours, protective coating, label finishing and quantity required.

Keep in mind that we can produce virtually any type of label design but the QR code itself should be black printed on a white background in order for it to be read properly by QR reader software. There is, however, a variance tolerance for QR codes (unlike other varieties of bar codes). If you would like to customize the look of the actual QR code we suggest testing it well before printing.

Our label experts are happy to send you a detailed quote based on your specifications, often within the same day. We make it easy – Just call us TOLL FREE at 1-866-474-1095 or fill out our online QR CODE STICKER QUOTE request form.

Click here for a quick QR CODE STICKER QUOTE specific to your project
Standard turnaround time is 10 business days following your approval of a digital proof
Super RUSH service is available for an additional fee
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Applicable taxes will be applied.

CALL TOLL FREE 1-866-474-1095

QR Code Generator - Create Your QR Code Now

QR Codes can be customized to provide valuable information to your customers. We have provided some examples below of just a few ways to design a QR code label. If you have a QR code reader installed in your phone or mobile device, you can try these codes out by hovering your camera over any of these images and watch where your camera takes you. It’s that easy!