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Do real people actually use QR Codes?

14 Million Americans Scanned QR Codes on their Mobile Phones in June 2011
Newspapers/Magazines and Product Packaging Most Likely Source of QR Code

QR Code Users Most Likely to Scan Code while at Home or Store

RESTON, VA, August 12, 2011 – comScore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR), a leader in measuring the digital world, today released results of a study on mobile QR code scanning based on data from its comScore MobiLens service. A QR (“Quick Response”) code is a specific matrix bar code (or two-dimensional code) that is readable by smartphones. The study found that in June 2011, 14 million mobile users in the U.S., representing 6.2 percent of the total mobile audience, scanned a QR code on their mobile device. The study found that a mobile user that scanned a QR code during the month was more likely to be male (60.5 percent of code scanning audience), skew toward ages 18-34 (53.4 percent) and have a household income of $100k or above (36.1 percent). The study also analyzed the source and location of QR code scanning, finding that users are most likely to scan codes found in newspapers/magazines and on product packaging and do so while at home or in a store.

“QR codes demonstrate just one of the ways in which mobile marketing can effectively be integrated into existing media and marketing campaigns to help reach desired consumer segments,” said Mark Donovan, comScore senior vice president of mobile. “For marketers, understanding which consumer segments scan QR codes, the source and location of these scans, and the resulting information delivered, is crucial in developing and deploying campaigns that successfully utilize QR codes to further brand engagement.”

Demographic Profile of a QR Code User

A demographic analysis of those who scanned a QR code with their mobile phone in June revealed an audience that was more likely to be male, young to middle-age and upper income. Men were 25 percent more likely (index of 125) than the average mobile user to scan QR codes, representing 60.5 percent of the scanning audience.

More than half of all QR code scanners were between the ages of 18-34 (53.4 percent). Those between the age of 25-34, who accounted for 36.8 percent of QR code scanners, were twice as likely as the average mobile user to engage in this behavior, while 18-24 year olds were 36 percent more likely than average (index of 136) to scan. More than 1 of every 3 QR code scanners (36.1 percent) had a household income of at least $100,000, representing both the largest and most over-represented income segment among the scanning audience.


*The set of questions asked specifically whether respondents had used their mobile phone to scan a 2D/QR code and an image of such a code was provide so there would not be confusion with 1D/UPC codes.
**Index = % of QR Code Scanners/% of total mobile users X 100, Index of 100 indicates average representation

Source and Location of QR Code Scanned

Analysis of the source and location of QR code scanning revealed further insights into how consumers are interacting with this marketing tool. The most popular source of a scanned QR code was a printed magazine or newspaper, with nearly half scanning QR codes from this source. Product packaging was the source of QR code scanning for 35.3 percent of the audience, while 27.4 percent scanned a code from a website on a PC and 23.5 percent scanned codes from a poster/flyer/kiosk.

Source and Location of QR Code Scanned


*The set of questions asked specifically whether respondents had used their mobile phone to scan a 2D/QR code and an image of such a code was provide so there would not be confusion with 1D/UPC codes.
**Percentages will not sum to 100% as respondents may select more than one source of QR code scanned

Among mobile users who scanned a QR code on their mobile devices in June, 58.0 percent did so from their home, while 39.4 percent did so from a retail store and 24.5 percent did so from a grocery store. Nearly 20 percent scanned a QR code while at work, while 12.6 percent did so outside or on public transit and 7.6 percent did so while in a restaurant.

For additional insights into QR Code usage in Europe, please visit the comScore Data Mine.


*The set of questions asked specifically whether respondents had used their mobile phone to scan a 2D/QR code and an image of such a code was provide so there would not be confusion with 1D/UPC codes.
**Percentages will not sum to 100% as respondents may select more than one location when QR code scanned

That’s a lot more than I would have thought.

Stephen

Posted on: August 16, 2011, 4:24 pm Category: Uncategorized

6 Responses

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  1. Jonathan said

    Did you see Lab42 also put out some data on QR codes. I’m always amused at some of the random places people put QR Codes. Like these, for example….http://bit.ly/oq4k5l

  2. Ha! Just got out of a meeting about QR Codes, then saw your post! We’re going to do a pilot project – stick some qr codes on books, and the code will point to the book reviews that we’ve written, on our website. Fingers crossed!

  3. I’m a bit mystified by the info that people walked to their TV and scan the QR codes displayed on the TV.

    @David: don’t forget to differentiate the link used for the QR code so you can analyse this later (accessing the book review page from the QR codes vs. link from your home page, for example.) Assuming you do have access to the web log statistic. :-)

  4. I don’t use QR codes, mostly due to them not being on things that are interesting to me. (such as movie posters – if the film looks rubbish)

    That said.

    I have a RUBBISH memory… so I photograph stuff a LOT.

    posters with web addresses / contact details, product names / tags (for future research), prices in stores, products that I’m kinda interested in, instructions, numbers (such as WiFI passwords!)

    I’m pretty sure that I’m not alone in doing this. QR codes will be big, and will solve a whole lot of other issues (like not realizing the photo is out of focus!) plus it connects directly with the product / service brand!

    Right now I see something I like, I snap it, I then have to search it out on my computer – QR codes can take me directly to the info I need!

  5. S Fischer said

    Do this guy’s stats make sense? The US population is 320,000,000 or in that neighborhood and, if my calculations are correct, according to this report some 225,000,000 have mobile phones that have scanning ability? Or is he inflating the numbers unreasonably? Amazing what can be done with stats.rightnback to the old saying: figures don’t lie – but, liars figure

  6. QR Codes are a great way to connect with your customers. To learn how to use QR Codes for your business, check out http://www.TheQRCodeMarketingGuide.com