Mon 22nd April



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QR Codes in Print 


Definition of QR Code

QR codes (Or Quick Response codes) are in essence a form of barcode. Although they’ve been around for years, the rise of smartphones has given them a new lease of life, allowing you to use your phone to access a wealth of information by scanning a QR code.

QR codes are great for printed material such as business cards as they act like a link would on a website, making print interactive.

QR codes can link to a variety of file types:

  • HTML Code
  • PNG File
  • Tiff File
  • SVG
  • EPS

How to Create a QR Code

QR codes can be created simply online. There are many free QR code generators available, allowing you to upload or link your content to create you code. Sites I would recommend include:

To create simpler codes less information is a must, so consider using a URL shortener for web addresses (included on

Make sure when adding QR codes to your printed work, not to distort the code in terms of pixelation or ratio. You can also add colour to your QR code, just make sure that the contrast is still high and the colour is solid. You can also add a small amount of embellishment to your code, up to 30% of a code can be obscured and it will still scan.

The most important thing to remember is to test your codes on a quality proof before they go to print. Online printers such as us will provide you with a proof (usually on screen) at your request.

Don’t be afraid to use your QR creatively and if you’re stuck for ideas here are some great examples of creative QR codes:


A clever use of the code, hailed by Guinness as the first “product activated” QR code.


A garden at the Chelsea Flower Show, the QR code garden merged horticulture with the digital age.


A more playful approach to constructing the code can be to make it out of existing materials.


Business cards, with their limited space, are perfect for QR codes to boost the amount of information they can carry.


8 Responses to “QR Codes in Print”

  1. Rebecca Southcombe says:

    I LOVE QR codes, they are fantastic! It’s great for companies to give extra information quickly and easily without taking up to much space and in turn saving paper waste. QR codes basically contain all the information you could possibly need in one small square.. Love it!

  2. Andrew Liddle says:

    Some really nice examples of QR codes integrated into the design here

  3. Clare Webb says:

    I have always wondered what these little square things did – they really are amazing, how can you get so much information into a little square?! Technology advances never fails to amaze me.

  4. Arabella Bazley says:

    I’ve only had a few dabbles in the QR code world but I think the newer artsy ones are more appealing if they really work. I’d be intrigued to find out where they take me :-)

  5. Sam Whistler says:

    I know these seem like a good idea, but I have to say I have never used my phone to scan a QR code- and yes I do have a smart phone! It just seems like, whats the point? It’ll just take me to an advert for the product that I’ve scanned.

  6. Ann Robinson says:

    Thanks for explaining more about QR code haven’t. i’ve seen them but haven’t taken too much notice of them, i didn’t realise they could be incorporated into a graphic but thinks its a good idea as you can keep your brand logo and incorporate the QR code into that so keeping your brand identity.

  7. I love the colourful QR code, it makes it stand out more & certainly looks more interesting than boring old black & white.

  8. A Webster says:

    Personally I like this form of marketing. It’s very straight forward and quick to do when out and about.

Leave a Reply to A Webster