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Why Chris Silver Smith Is Wrong



Chris Silver Smith, in his Search Engine Land article, writes that QR codes might no be the be-all solution for small businesses.  Smith cautions that small business would have to be sure that their customers are tech-savvy enough to know what a QR code is and what to do with them.

BeQRious.com thinks that this is flat out wrong.  You can create QR code campaigns with clear and concise instructions to help make sure that your customers would know what a QR code is.  Ironically, all it takes to educate people about QR codes is a few lines of text.

Smith also brings up other points about the QR code, and why he’s wrong:

1. QR codes are not an improvement over URLs.  Smith wrote it himself: QR codes save you from having to manually type in a URL.  Admittedly, it may not be a faster process, but QR codes also make sure that you get the accurate URL, especially for longer ones.

2. “Hype-laden rhetorics.”  If you have used a QR code, you know what it could and could not do.  But if it made your life easier, then wouldn’t you rave about it?  The “hype-laden” rhetorics are merely testaments to the power these codes have.

3. Again, another reference to CueCat.  A lot of people liken QR codes to CueCat, a short-lived and much maligned product in the 1990s.  CueCat’s technology is very dissimilar to QR codes.  So much so that a comparison between the two is ridiculous.  QR codes allow for out-of-home scanning, and in this mobile age, it makes sense.  With a CueCat, you scan the barcode and it allows you to connect to a PC when you get home so you could access the URL behind it.

QR codes are very flexible.  Cues are not.

It’s true that the CueCat was invented to bridge the offline (printed materials) with the online world, but the similarities stop there.

And as far as adoption is concerned, we think that the numbers should do the talking for us.  Here and here.

Suffice it to say, as Google has proven that it is now looking back at QR codes for some of its services, QR codes are a perfect fit for small businesses!


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