Are QR Codes Worth Your Efforts?

Are QR codes dead?

We’ve all seen them before—those black-and-white pixelated squared splatters on flyers, posters, labels, and advertisements. Despite having been around for decades, QR codes never became the revolutionary tool that businesses and marketers had hoped. This begs the question–are QR codes dead or are they making a comeback? Should I jump on the QR code bandwagon?

What Are QR Codes ?

Quick Response (QR) codes have been around for more than two decades now.  Created in 1994 by Denso Wave company, QR codes were used to track vehicles during the manufacturing and shipping process in Japanese auto industry. They store information that can be picked up by a reader very quickly when scanned.
Over the past decade, the rise of smartphones helped QR codes expand into other industries such as  supermarkets, food labels, show materials, and restaurants to name a few. Moreover, recent models of Apple and Android smartphones have automatically included a QR reader in their operating systems, making QR codes ubiquitously mobile.

How does QR codes work and are they for you?

 When used properly to generate interest and capture leads, QR codes can be the simple and cost-effective solution. When a shopper scans a QR code to receive an offer (discounts, more information, etc…), they opt-in as a lead into the CRM. QR codes help eliminate the need to transcribe data from paper forms that customers traditionally filled out. However, are QR codes right for you?


‘To Kill or Not to Kill’ QR Codes

 Though QR codes are growing in popularity, partly due to the pushes in technology, they are NOT for everyone. Just because we know what QR codes are and what they can do—does not mean we care enough to interact with them – or even learn how to use them.
As HubSpot points out, it is easy to create a QR code, but the steps to reach the reward or information that the QR code promises is not as easy. To scan a QR code, customers must stop to take out their mobile device, open the QR reader, scan a code, and then wait for the information/reward to load. All of which are not as easy and convenient for many mobile users. Also why QR codes are not as popular– little reward for what seems to be too many steps or ‘too much’ work.


Some QR Code Alternatives

Simple URLs
The rise of connected devices and a more tech-savvy populace has made digital alternatives to QR codes easier to use for restaurants and marketers alike. While some users may prefer to scan a QR code to reach a restaurant’s website, providing an easy-to-remember URL is a much simpler way to get users to your website.
Dedicated Apps
Why some restaurants and franchises are bypassing QR codes completely? Instead of complicating themselves with QR codes, most created a dedicated application for their services, mobile ordering— whether through their app or website, would offer far more opportunities for personalization and customer engagement than a QR code.
Short Message Service (SMS) Text Marketing
SMS marketing targets the largest audience of mobile phone users – those who know how to send a text message. Texting is the quickest, most direct and – importantly – the most popular type of contact your customers can receive. What’s more, SMS via short codes can do the same thing in a fraction of the time – without a smartphone, camera, or installed reader, and can easily be integrated into campaigns that are not print or image dependant.
Don’t believe us? Let the data speak for itself.


Redline is dedicated to helping dealerships engage, communicate with, and cater to modern, tech savvy car shoppers. Our unique proprietary suite of products and services optimizes and redefines how automotive dealers reach, retain, market, and sell to customers — front end, back end, all ends.

Our suggested marketing solution:

TextUps is Redline’s dynamic SMS system that offers the power and flexibility to engage your audience with the right offer at the right time. TextUps is the only automotive text lead tool that generates leads from your dealership’s lot, website, 3rd party sites, as well as traditional advertising channels. It can be easily integrated into your stickers, overlays, website, photos, and even videos.

With TextUps, you can increase your lead to appointment conversions with very little effort. Whether it is during or after business hours, TextUps will continue to respond to interested shoppers. Shoppers can text to receive information on their vehicle of interest at any time and instantly receive a text with the vehicle’s information delivered directly to their cell with a direct link to that exact vehicle on your dealership’s website. Conveniently, your dealership receives the lead with shopper’s mobile number and vehicle of interest.

Ready to get started? For more information or to purchase, please visit or contact us at 609-414-7870, Monday-Friday (8:30am-5pm EST).

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