Driven by the COVID pandemic, touchless experiences, including QR codes, have gained new life for consumers, brands, and retailers. Over the last year, QR codes have been commonplace, from TV shows to retail locations. Accordingly, if QR codes could talk, they would adamantly deny that their useful life has ended. Oh, and by the way, they can talk – but more about that shortly.

QR codes in retail
QR codes are popular again in retail, where now generation video experiences are made possible by Vocinity.
Photo credit – 5 Ways Retailers Can Use QR Codes, June 25, 2021, By Kaitlin Morrison.

Quick QR Code History

Denso Wave, a Toyota subsidiary, used the first Quick Respons (QR) code in 1994 to track vehicles and parts during the manufacturing process. But it wasn’t until 2011 that they became mainstream with the release of code readers on the major smartphone platforms.

“Interestingly, Denso Wave created this new barcode format with a promise not to exercise their rights on the patent they held for the technology…By 2013, once every trade show in the world had used QR codes for their badge/check-in process, the QR code was labeled a fad and fell out of favor, slipping back through the cracks from whence it came just a few years prior.”
QR Code: The Comeback Kid, By Paul Garcia @codecorp  Mobile Scanning July 2021

The Now-Generation QR Codes

Quick response codes have become mainstream with new life, especially with millennials and gen z consumers, as they are a fast, convenient, and easy way to get information and pay for purchased goods.

QR codes seem to be everywhere – retail stores and marketing teams are using them to enhance customer experience, and the benefits are endless… According to Juniper Research, over 1.5 billion people accessed a QR code in 2020 – this number is expected to rise to 2.2B by 2025.
Why Retailers Should Embrace QR Codes, By Leigh Sevin, Co-Founder @ Endear

The nice thing is that you can place them pretty much anywhere. Their use is spreading across industries but has seen a particular resurgence in retail. Today, you can find them on merchandising, product packaging, and checkout counters in stores. Consequently, you can also find them in digital and printed advertisements. These simple little codes can help consumers pay and access information on goods and services for support. It can also help brands and retailers capture usage and engagement frequency information.

Western brands, retailers and consumers are rapidly discovering what Asia already knows—that digitized products with QR codes provide consumers with an easy way to connect through their mobile phone with brands and retailers. 
Why QR Code Scanning Will Be At The Forefront Of Retail Success This HolidayForbes, Nov 7, 2020, Niall Murphy

But Can They Really Talk?

Traditionally, quick response codes have enabled simple information and communication exchanges between brands, retailers, and consumers. However, with Vocinity, instead of static content, scanning a Vocinity-enabled code launches a personalized, interactive video-based sales and service experience featuring virtual brand assistants, live video chats, or even streaming commerce events.

Vocinity QR Codes
Vocinity QR Code Launch Virtual Brand Assistants, Live Video Chats, or Streaming Commerce Broadcasts

All the Vocinity magic happens using WebRTC, so pretty much anyone with a smartphone or tablet can engage with just a simple scan. Today, you will find Vocinity enabled codes supporting major brands and retailers, especially with assisted selling high-value and luxury items.

Helps Address The Labor Shortage Too

With Vocinity, you address the cost, coverage, and consistency challenges of finding, training, and retaining quality staff. With a quick response code, you can improve shopper and customer experiences and the effectiveness of existing staff. These memorable interactive multimedia journeys follow user input and preferences.

Labor Shortage Fuels The Need For Virtual Brand Assistants
Labor Shortage Fuels The Need For Virtual Brand Assistants

Vocinity conversational brand assistants are always available. They ensure consistent delivery of product details and answers to customer questions. They can also share documents, images, videos, and product demos or offer promotions. They can even complete the sale. For a human touch, video engagements transfer to live agents can happen at any time or go directly to them as desired.

Don’t Settle For Plain Old Quick Response Codes

If you believe in the value of QR codes, then don’t settle for just any user experience. Vocinity quick response codes are a simple enhancement and a game-changer simultaneously.

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