QR Codes 3-3-9 (3 Do's, 3 Don'ts and 9 Suggestions)
Nine Best-Use Suggestions
1. Use error correction at the M lever (most code generators have this option). This means that even if up to 15 percent of the code is blocked or dirty, it can be corrected and still be read.
2. Save your codes as a SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) if possible, which is a vectored image XML file. It can be increased or reduced without losing resolution and makes for a better printed code. You can also put colors into the code using Illustrator or CorelDraw. Try out different colors and test, test, test.
3. A good margin or white space is important to the proper rendering of a code. Most codes are 25 modules up and 25 modules across. I like to have at least three or four modules of white space. Do not print on black without having white space beyond the code itself around it.
4. Not every target has a smartphone... it's best to show the URL link the code renders to next to the code when you print. This helps increase your scan rate. About 50 percent of mobile phones in the USA are smartphones, make sure the other 50 percent can respond to your promotion by showing the URL link.
5. Show how to get a free reader. Print "get a free reader at your app store" near the code.
6. Some URL shortener services will let you change the destination link without changing the code. You could then use the same code and redirect it to a different YouTube video or offer each week.
7. Make sure you have color contrast... a dark and a light color... no less than 4:1 ratio (black/white is best). If there is not enough contrast, your code will be harder to read or not be read at all. Other colors can be used as long as you stick to the 4/1 ratio; brown/yellow or red/white would work.
8. Create your code so you can track how many scans it generated... using analytics to improve your project. Both bit.ly and goo.gl offer free analytics when you use their service to shorten an URL.
9. Finally, make sure any code you create for printing is not RGB. Even when printing black and white, it should be changed to a grayscale or CMYK so only the black plate is used when printing. This will help the resolution and make scanning easier by more smartphones. Saving a SVG code as a jpeg will work if it is the actual size it will print at, if it is saved as CMYK and if it is saved at a minimum of 300 dpi.