QR Codes - Best Practices

Ensure Code Scanning Success for Your Customers

Ensure Code Scanning Success for Your Customers

QR Codes — Best Practices

QR codes are a convenient way to access digital content quickly through a smartphone or scanner. Most modern smartphones can read QR codes directly with their camera app, and this feature is native in devices with iOS 11+ or Android 8+. They can be presented on both digital screens and printed media for ease of access.  

When printing QR codes on packaging, following best practices ensures the codes are scannable and effective for marketing or informational purposes. For best practices on preparing your QR codes for print, review our Print QR Codes document.    

Here are some key considerations:

Size Matters: For optimal scanning, print QR codes no less than 3cm² to ensure compatibility across various devices, especially older models with less advanced cameras. Smaller codes may work but can be less reliable. Increase the size for packaging viewed from a distance, and always test scan.  

Viiision provides both PNG and SVG QR code files. When sharing your QR code, consider using PNG files for smaller presentation formats, like on flyers. For larger presentations, such as large posters or billboard signage, SVG files work best.    

Contrast is Key: Use high-contrast colors, with the code in darker color against a lighter background to ensure readability. Avoid using colors that are too light.  

Quality of Print: Ensure that the resolution is high. Aim for at least 300 DPI to avoid blurriness which can affect scan-ability.

Materials and Coatings: Glossy surfaces can produce glare that impedes scanning. Opt for matte finishes and ensure that the material of the packaging doesn't crinkle around the QR code.

Testing: Before mass printing, test the QR code on the packaging material with several readers (smartphones and QR code scanning apps) to ensure that it scans correctly.

Strategic Placement: Place QR codes where they are easy to see and scan, away from folds, edges, and other design elements that could obscure them.

Distance of the Scanning Device: Printed size will determine the distance at which your QR codes are scannable. Generally, a code is scannable from 10x the height and width of the QR code. Thus, a one-inch square QR code is scannable at 10 inches, and a one-foot square QR code is scannable from 10 feet away.

Call to Action: Include a clear and catchy call to action near the QR code, such as "Scan for a Surprise," to encourage interaction.

Quiet Zone: Maintain a clear margin, or "quiet zone," around the QR code, which should frame the code equally to prevent scanning errors.  

Best Practices for QR Code Usage with Logos:

When incorporating logos into your QR codes, it is crucial to maintain the code's integrity to ensure maximum scan reliability. Viiision QR codes allow for a logo to occupy approximately 30% of the QR code space. To counterbalance the potential disruption caused by a logo, Viiision provides an error correction level of 30%. This error correction acts as a safeguard, replicating parts of the code to preserve its functionality even when a portion is obscured by a logo.  

However, it is advisable to carefully consider the necessity of a logo within the QR code. Omitting the logo can enhance the QR code's resilience against damage and misreads. If brand recognition is a priority, ensure that surrounding packaging and marketing materials adequately convey your brand identity without the need to embed a logo into the QR code itself.

When printing your QR code on packaging, with a logo included, we recommend sizing the code to be at least 1.2 inches (3 cm) on each side to ensure scan-ability. For QR codes without a logo, a smaller minimum size of 0.8 inches (2 cm) is often sufficient, providing your customers with a quick and seamless scanning experience. Always perform thorough testing of your QR codes in real-world scenarios prior to mass printing to verify their reliability.