The MOO Blog

QR codes land at MOO!

16th August 2011 by Martin

We know that you, our loyal MOOsters, have the Eyes of the Hawk. Therefore, we’re sure it hasn’t escaped your attention that there’s been a proliferation of strange little square black and white codes on packaging, on advertisements and almost anywhere else you can look recently.

These little monochromatic matrices of joy are called QR Codes, and can do all kinds of fun stuff when you aim a smartphone at them. From directing you to a website, dialling a phone to hosting an image, these little guys are proving themselves the new popular kid on the block when it comes to getting your deets into other people’s hands.

We’ve been getting a lot of requests to build some kind of QR Code tool on MOO, and we’ve launched just that. You can now build and insert a QR Code onto your MOO Business Cards right here on the site.

It’s dead quick and easy. In fact, if you click here you can give it a try for yourself. You can choose one of three options:

• Make a phone call
• Link to a URL
• Create a vCard (electronic contact card)

You just enter your details, upload your images to the other side and then, lo and behold, you’ll see your shiny new QR Code on the front of your cards!

We’ve taken some time out of our busy day to make a little video run-through of how it works (but mostly it’s so you can listen to my sonorous tones). Watch the video and if you still have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us or leave a comment below. We have Ears of the Wolf, and are always listening.

Thanks,

Martin

Product Manager and Bravestarr fan

Read comments (25)

  1. Ady Coles:

    A very timely item. I’ve just received my new batch of MiniCards from yourselves, complete with a QR code to my ‘about.me’ page.

  2. adam:

    Hi. We love QR codes – word of warning though. We printed some Recommendi.com codes on the lovely Moo stickers (and adding a line of text around the code, effectively a border of 3mm). They looked great, but the code was a little too small to focus on with my rather myopic iphone 3G. iphone 4 and others maybe a little better but I would make sure you test the size before releasing into the wild!

  3. Kellee:

    Loving the Kittens guys! :3

  4. Judy:

    Fantastic idea – I personally don’t have a smartphone but this is good technology to add to cards for people who do!
    thank you!!

  5. Martin:

    Hello Adam,

    Good point, and something that we tested for when we were preparing this. While our Stickerbook stickers are rather small, and potentially could cause problems with the “scanability” of a QR Code, our Business Card QR Codes are substantially larger. This should mean that they experience far fewer issues.

    Obviously, the quality of your QR Code Reader app will have a huge impact on the success rate of your codes, and in addition we’d highly recommend not reducing the code from it’s default size. However, you shouldn’t have a problem scanning our QR codes with most smartphones. We’ve tested on every major OS, with all the dominant handsets.

    Our only advice is that to maximise the success rate of scanning a vCard code, you use a phone with more than a 3MP camera, as these codes are relatively information dense, and a higher resolution camera will make it much easier to scan them.

    Hope that helps.

    Martin
    Product Manager @ MOO

  6. angela blankenship:

    Can I make QR code stickers? If so, where? I don’t see the option in the “Stickers” product section.

    Thanks!
    Angela

  7. Martin:

    Hello Angela,

    Not right now, no. We would like to in the future, but we are still trying to make sure that the small size of our stickers will work well enough with QR codes to still be scannable.

    In the more immediate future we are likely to release them on round and label stickers, but we have some technical issues to get around before we can do that.

    So for now, it’s just business cards. But be patient and you may get what you want in the future!

    Martin
    Product Manager @ MOO

  8. Martin:

    …Although obviously, you’re welcome to create a QR Code on an external generator and upload it to our stickers using our upload tool. We just cannot vouch for how well they’ll work.

    Martin

  9. Eveline:

    Sweet code, Moo! :D

  10. Ady Coles:

    @Moo crew and other interested parties – I generated my QR code myself and added it to my miniCard design. I used the ‘print pdf’ option to grab a 100% representation of the MiniCards and used my phone to check that the QR code could be read. Only then did I go ahead and order them. And a nice, crisp print it is. Superb quality, guys.

  11. Brian Hayashi:

    I included QR codes in my last batch of business cards. I used a short link instead of the standard link, which meant the QR encoding process needed less information, which results in easier-to-read codes.

    http://www.moo.com/blog/2011/08/16/qr-codes-land-at-moo/?utm_source=moosletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=16082011US
    vs
    http://bit.ly/ps7NG8

    Sadly, while I did just about everything to test it during pre-press, the actual code wasn’t readable when I received my cards. Hopefully by shifting the QR insertion process to your side, you end up with a better product.

  12. Tawnya:

    Just wanted to know if anything is in the works for a similar product for Microsoft Tags????

  13. Martin:

    Brian,

    Great idea about the URL shortener. The less information that you include in the QR Code, the easier it’ll be to scan.

    In regard to your order, I hope you don’t mind but I took the liberty of looking it up so that I could understand where you may have had a problem. While on screen your code looks perfectly readable (I’m on a large screen so the is much larger than the real life business card design), it’s actually really rather small, and is also quite data dense. When printed, the code will be too small to scan on a majority of phones.

    The good news is that our default QR Code size is somewhat larger than you used, so you will experience far fewer problems.

    I hope that helps,

    Martin
    Product Manager @ MOO

  14. Martin:

    Tawnya,

    At the moment, we don’t have any plans to introduce Microsoft Tags to cards. If we find that they are adopted more widely and more customers request it, then we’ll definitely look at it.
    Martin

  15. Laura:

    I am just getting all my info ready to print my first set of marketing materials and I am very happy to hear this! Thanks :)

  16. Stephen May:

    little moo hasn’t quite got the hang of QR just yet… but his heart is in the right place

    http://tinyurl.com/3kqy87s

  17. Martin:

    Stephen,

    That’s AWESOME!

    Martin

  18. Ginny:

    I’m afraid I don’t get it! I have an iPhone 3GS but not sure how I’m supposed to scan it or what I should be seeing?! Surely if I’m very confused a lot of customers will be too…?!

  19. shadoukat:

    @ginny – in order to be able to scan the qr codes, you need to download a qrcode reader app (they are free). I have downloaded a few various ones to test out with my ipad, and I find that the easiest and best qrcode maker/reader has been from:

    http://www.qrcodecity.com

    its pretty straight forward and you can create your own codes there too :)
    Another thing to note is that qr codes have a 30% margin of error.. which means that you can alter about 30% of your qr code and it will still be useful. (as long as you make sure the code is on a light background)

    so you can always start adding a few more fun design elements to your qrcode to make it a tad more unique.

    :)

  20. fiel patricio:

    Hello,

    I think this is an excellent idea. I was wondering if there’s a way to code the QR code to go to a page where folks get a discount code when scanning the QR. And also be able to track it when it was scanned.

    For example:

    20% discount on any EtsyStore product. Code: ABC123

    Thanks.

  21. Martin:

    Hello Fiel,

    While it’s very possible to link to any page you choose, I suspect that you’re asking if you can attach a promocode to the QR Code. Currently, the only way I can think of to do that is if you have the ability to add the promocode in the URL somehow. So long as it’s in the URL, you can do whatever you like! However, any custom QR Code work will not be possible at the moment.

    Hope that helps.

    Martin
    Product Manager @ MOO

  22. Nick:

    Hi Martin,

    Great to see how easy you guys have made it to add QR codes to business cards. The above comment on adding a URL shortener option in the URL field would be very helpful to people to optimise their QR codes.

    Any plans on adding other options to the drop-down? I’d obviously love to talk to you guys about adding QRky to the drop-down list at some point..

    Nick

  23. Martin:

    NIck, the idea of using a URL shortener is a good one, and one I’m actively looking at for our implimentation.

    In regards to other options, we are always looking. It’s just a matter of understanding what people actually WANT. If you have suggestions, please fire them our way in the comments…

    Thanks,

    Martin
    Product Manager @ MOO

  24. Jay:

    IMHO, Microsoft Tag is vastly superior to QR code and strongly urge moo to adopt it. The most significant benefit is the data itself isn’t fully encoded. So, for example, with QR codes, if you publish a code with you mobile number and it changes, well, the QR code is wrong. With Tag, you update your Tag with your new number and anyone that scans your Tag gets the new number.

    That’s just one reason. See http://tag.microsoft.com/what-is-tag/2d-barcodes.aspx for more.

  25. web design london:

    It’s hard to come by well-informed people in this particular subject, however, you sound like you know what you’re talking about!

    Thanks

Post a comment

  • we won't publish your email, or spam you

Please keep comments on-topic and be nice to people. We don't like moderating, but inflammatory, or otherwise inappropriate comments will be deleted. Repeat offenders sent to the MOO dungeons.

New to MOO?

We help our customers print things like Business Cards, MiniCards, and Letterheads, making it easy for them to share information about themselves or their business in the real world.

Keep in touch …

Don't miss out on special offers and discounts that we share with our subscribers!

Sign up to the newsletter

Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to the feed

MOO Products on Flickr

  • Strawberries in the sun
  • Untitled
  • Heart
  • Colorful phone wallpaper design
  • P1010522
  • P1010012

View more on Flickr

Refer friends and earn money

We know that lots of you are great ambassadors for MOO and so we've been thinking of a way to say thank you. Which is why you can now actually earn money off your next order when you refer friends to MOO.

Find out more

Join the MOO Affiliate Program

If you can do us a favour, we'll do one for you in return. Sign up as an affiliate and you could earn up to £5, $8, or €6 for every new customer you send our way.

Sign up now
  Oh hi, nice to see you! Fonts Terms & conditions Privacy policy © MOO Inc., 985 Waterman Avenue, East Providence, RI 02914, USA - Registered in the United States of America.