In the world of quick and convenient information sharing, QR Codes have become an indispensable tool. They have the ability to redirect offline users to the online, allowing them to access multimedia content with a simple scan.
While QR Codes have been designated the black and white color, these are essentially free or static QR Codes. They’re widespread across ticketing counters, billboards, flyers, and other physical marketing materials.
But while they’re in the spotlight owing to their versatility, it’s essential to note the fundamentals of these static QR Codes. They lead scanners to varied content effectively, but their features are limited to this and the basic customization that free QR Code generators offer.
So, how exactly do you make the most of static QR Codes? And how are they different from their counterpart, dynamic QR Codes, which have surpassed static ones in terms of usage?
That’s what we set out to decode in this article. Read on to find out!
A static QR Code is a type of QR Code that contains fixed or uneditable information directly encoded into its pattern of squares and dots. Unlike dynamic QR Codes, static QR Codes do not use a redirection mechanism.
This means that the information contained within a static QR Code remains unchanged once it’s generated. In essence, it’s a one-time snapshot of data.
How does a static QR Code work?
Static QR Codes work by encoding information, such as a website URL, contact information, or plain text, directly into the pattern of black squares and white spaces.
When you scan a static QR Code with a compatible mobile device, the device deciphers the code and directs you to the encoded information or website. Since the data is embedded within the code itself, there’s no need for additional redirection or intermediate links.
How to create a one-time, static QR Code
To create a one-time, static QR Code, you would only require two things:
Step 1: Open Beaconstac’s QR Code generator and choose your campaign
In this case, let’s assume we are sharing a website. Choose your campaign as “URL”. In the case of any other content type, choose the campaign accordingly.
Step 2: Insert the URL of the content
Copy the URL of the website and paste it in the field below.
Step 3: Customize and download the static QR Code
You can use the color palette to customize the QR Code. Once done, click “Download QR Code.” For static QR Codes, you will only be able to download it in PNG format.
Where to use Static QR Codes
Given the limited features of static QR Codes, here are three key scenarios where they can be useful:
1. For one-time usage
Static QR Codes are ideal for situations where you need to provide information or access a specific resource for a single, non-recurring event. For instance, if you’re sharing WiFi credentials, a static QR Code can efficiently deliver the necessary information.
2. When there’s limited content
In cases where the content you want to redirect users to, is of a smaller file size, or doesn’t require an update, static QR Codes are a practical choice. For instance, they can work best for sharing contact details or plain text. Static QR Codes work best for sharing content that is lesser in file size, and can be stored within its data pattern.
On the other hand, for sharing files such as larger PDFs, documents, or menus, static QR Codes may not be the best choice. As the file size increases, the data pattern of the static QR Code gets more complex. This can lead to scannability issues or the inability to encode such large data within static QR Codes.
3. For redirecting users to online content
Static QR Codes can efficiently redirect users to online resources, such as your website or course materials. This is beneficial when the intent is to redirect users to relatively stable content that is not frequently updated.
By using a static QR Code, you simplify the process for users, who can easily scan the QR Code using their mobile devices and access the intended online content.
Ultimately, it’s essential to recognize that static QR Codes are best suited for specific scenarios where the information remains static and doesn’t require tracking or frequent updates. In cases where you need more advanced features, such as scan tracking, content editing, or enhanced customization, you may require an upgrade to dynamic QR Codes.
What are the limitations of a static QR Code?
Apart from their limited features, static QR Codes carry several limitations, such as:
Perhaps the most significant limitation of static QR Codes is their lack of editability. Once generated, the encoded information is fixed and cannot be changed. This can be problematic if the information needs updates or revisions.
2. Limited Customization
Static QR Codes offer minimal customization options in terms of design and appearance. They typically appear as black-and-white patterns, making them less visually appealing. You can customize the pattern with a limited color palette, but you will be unable to add a logo, a background, a frame, or even customize the QR Code as per your branding.
3. No tracking ability
Static QR Codes lack the ability to track scans. This means you won’t have insights into how many times your QR Codes have been scanned, when, or where it was scanned.
4. Limited safety features
Static QR Codes may not offer the same level of security as dynamic QR Codes. Since the encoded data is fixed, it can’t adapt to evolving security needs or changes in content nor provide secure QR Code interactions.
Beaconstac’s take on why static QR Codes may not help in the long run
Static QR Codes are a straightforward way to share information quickly and conveniently. However, they come with limitations such as non-editability, limited customization options, inability to track scans, and minimal to no safety features.
In contrast, dynamic QR Codes offer greater flexibility. How exactly?
They use a redirection mechanism, allowing you to change the destination URL or content as needed.
Dynamic QR Codes are also trackable, and more visually appealing
They tag along with additional features such as analytics, integration with third-party apps, extensive customization, security, etc.
While static QR Codes are known globally, dynamic QR Codes have emerged as the preferred choice for businesses looking to engage users, track performance, and adapt to changing needs.
As technology continues to evolve, dynamic QR Codes are likely to play an even more significant role in diverse campaigns, making it a preferred choice over static QR Codes.
Curious to try out dynamic QR Codes? Here’s how you can get started 👇
Frequently asked questions
1. How long do static QR Codes last?
Static QR Codes last as long as the QR Code is scannable and redirects to the right content. Static QR Codes stop working when the QR Code is damaged, unscannable or leads to a 404 error when scanned.
2. Can a static QR Code be deactivated?
No, you cannot deactivate a static QR Code. This makes static QR Codes more prone to duplications, damage, or even scammer attacks. With dynamic QR Codes, you get better safety and the ability to deactivate a campaign whenever necessary.
3. Can static QR Codes be tracked?
Static QR Codes cannot be tracked as they only allow users to scan and view fixed data that is stored as information in the data patterns. On the other hand, dynamic QR Codes can be tracked to obtain analytics such as the number of scans, time, location, device used, etc.
Navya is an ardent writer focusing on the benefits of QR Codes for businesses. She has been writing about QR Code topics into action oriented guides since 2019. Presently, she helps people understand the benefits of paid QR Code solutions as a powerful marketing tool. To know more about her work around QR Codes, click here.