Despite losing popularity a few years after they broke into retail, a recent study from Vibes shows that Quick Response (QR) codes are again thriving as a way for costumers to get more information and special in-store offers. In fact, they even seem to be driving in-store purchases.
The study, which looked at in-store smartphone usage, found that 31 percent of smartphone owners in the U.S. have scanned a QR code (the black and white square that links to content when scanned by a smartphone camera) in a store. Of those, 40 percent said they made a purchase they hadn’t planned on making due to the information they received. Another 42 percent reported that the information helped them feel better about a purchase they were going to make.
In-Store Smartphone Activities on the Rise
However, according to MarketingCharts, consumers aren’t just using their smartphones to scan QR codes in stores. They’re also researching products on a store’s website, comparing prices of competitor’s products and making mobile purchases.
Close to half of respondents said they compared prices on a competitor’s website while in a store, making this the most common in-store activity. After comparing products, 37 percent negotiated a better price at the store they were in, while 10 percent paid the regular price. Alternatively, 45 percent bought the item elsewhere (most commonly on Amazon).
To evaluate a true picture of in-store behavior, Vibes gathered responses from 1,000 smartphone owners via an online poll. Their research found that while in-store smartphone usage is on the rise, there are also a few reasons for why consumers tend to avoid in-store messaging, including lack of personalization (such as sizes and favorite shopping categories), receiving too many messages, and irrelevant information.
Mobile devices allow brands a unique opportunity to connect with their customers in stores. However, mobile marketers must pay attention to the trends. Mobile users want timely, useful information to help them with purchase decisions. A QR code provides an easy way for users to access this information and may even be beneficial in driving purchases.
Mad Mobile is the leading provider of mobile-first solutions for the world's top companies and retailers.
Looking for a technology partner who can deliver amazing mobile solutions across multiple mobile interfaces?