Are QR Codes Back From the Dead?


QR code in use on Target mobile

QR codes were more or less declared as good as dead a few months back, a superfluous technology with which consumers didn’t actually want to engage.  However, data from last week’s Black Friday shows that the technology is back in the game, with ScanLife, a QR code generator and management system, reporting a quarter of a million scans from 7 p.m. on Thanksgiving through 7 p.m. the next day.

Why the sudden consumer interest?  It might be that QR codes are finally helping retailers, because retailers are using them better to help themselves. Implementing the technology in-store was a tactic taken by both Target and Walmart to combat showrooming, not necessarily aimed at making QR codes a success.  However, since they were a key feature in both cases to offer discounts and ways to shop stealthily, QR codes were finally put to an appealing use.  Retailers have figured out their niche utility.

So maybe it’s not that QR codes are back in the game — rather, it just took this long for them to be put to their most effective use.