Help improve your marketing strategies, increase your long-term customer loyalty and add value to your edibles by integrating QR Codes on your food packaging.

The Benefits of Using QR Codes on Food Packaging

When it comes to food, consumers want more provenance information, more transparency and, in regards to packaging, more sustainability, and less waste. Ingredients, discoverability, social impact, these are all trends that impact brand growth. But how can you connect consumers with your supply chain information, from raw material to shelf, without wasteful packaging layering?

1. Packaging for the future

Create an interactive experience for your consumers by connecting with them via QR Codes. Imagine redefining how your consumers discover your food products! With just one scan, you can direct them to a video playlist showcasing the provenance of your raw materials, from fields to packaging to the consumer’s hands, so they can track your food product. Provide allergy information with a PDF QR Code, ingredients list, nutritional details or inspire people’s creativity with readily available recipes. And, if you want to make it easy for consumers to not only save coupons but redeem it on their next purchase, then print a Coupon QR Code on your packaging. One scan and they can save it to their mobile device, share it and redeem it so they can truly tap into their inner extreme couponer.

2. A supply chain of trust

Seafood Source recently covered the story of Raw Seafoods, a U.S. based seafood supplier, who wanted to address growing consumer mistrust in seafood, which centered around sustainability, food safety, and seafood fraud. By using QR Codes to build a line of trust between their whole supply chain and their consumers, they aim to increase brand trust and, by proxy, increase sales. QR Codes create trust by granting instant access to information before people even purchase a product.

3. Eco-friendly food packaging

Let’s be honest, brands who do not consider sustainability, and are not environmentally conscious when designing food packaging and marketing tactics, will not inspire much confidence in today’s competitive market. QR Codes are an aesthetically appealing, minimalistic solution for reducing food package waste and connecting your brand with technology. Additionally, the information uploaded to your QR Code, such as a list of ingredients or allergens, can be easily updated without the need to reprint or regenerate the Code, which helps you save on printing costs and waste less.

4. Strategize your marketing

Empower your marketing team by optimizing your tactics with our Dynamic QR Codes’ tracking technology. Register how often, where, when and with what device your Codes are scanned, so you are always on top of the success and short-comings of your informational campaign. How else can you improve your smart packaging if you are not given real-time feedback? QR Code tracking gives you access to revealing statistics that help identify trends and adjust your campaign to ensure effectiveness.

How to create a QR Code on a Food Packaging?

  1. Go to QR Code Generator and select the type of QR Code you’d like on your food packaging. We recommend using the URL QR Code to start with.*
  2. Enter your website address.
  3. Your QR Code will be generated automatically.
  4. Now, customize the design of your QR Code by adding a frame and a “Scan Me” logo.*
  5. Select colors to match your style or company brand identity.
  6. Select ‘Download’ to receive your QR Code file in .jpg format.
  7. Integrate your newly-created QR Code to your food packaging design.

*Sign up to choose more QR Codes such as Event, Video, and Coupon, where you have the option of adding more information, more visuals, and edit or replace all the information without reprinting a new QR Code. You can also choose from a variety of frames and upload your own logo.

QR Codes on Food Packaging Best Practices

If you are going to use QR Codes on your food packaging marketing strategy, there are a few things you should keep in mind when structuring your design. No longer monochromatic, the QR Code now has a variety of design options you can use to get your audience’s attention. Here is a list of tips.

1. Add instructions

One big mistake QR Code users have made in the past was printing QR Codes on food packaging without a short, written explanation of what the consumer would gain or learn from scanning the code. Make sure to incentivize your consumers to scan your Code, or else all your marketing efforts will be for naught.

2. Frame it

With our customizable frames, you can make your QR Code blend in with your food packaging design or your company’s brand identity. When designing your QR Code, you will be offered a wide variety of ready-made frames with different Call to Action (CTA) messages and color options from which to select. If you want to add personalized details, you have the option of customizing even more by selecting a different shape, a different icon, and even adding your own text. Check-out our guide to QR Code frames here.

3. Add a logo inside your QR Code

Once you have selected a frame option and customized your Code’s shape and color, you can choose to incorporate a logo at the center of your QR Code. Though there are a few ready-made options to select from, you can also upload your own logo or your own CTA like “Track me,” “Like us” or “Read me.” Our system automatically detects the best and largest size for uploaded logos to make sure QR Codes remain scannable, so you do not have to worry about making the correct adjustments.

4. Save your designs

Let’s say you want to promote a new, limited time only, seasonal flavor or you have expanded your company to include more services for your consumers and want to remain consistent with your design. Well, no worries, you no longer have to fret about recreating an old QR Code design manually. QR Code Generator allows you to save all your designs as templates, so you can reuse them for any of your marketing endeavors.

5. Customizable URL

By default, every Dynamic QR Code gets a random short URL that redirects to your page when the QR Code is scanned. The short URL can be customized to your preference (e.g. by including your company name) to help you stand out from competitors and build more trust among users. Follow the steps on this page if you would like to edit your short URL.

6. Test before printing

The minimum size of a QR Code on your food packaging should be 2 x 2 cm (about 0.8 x 0.8 in). From there you can always make it a bit bigger, but we do not recommend going smaller as it would render your Code unscannable or even unnoticeable. Elaborate designs and low color contrast, or a large number of encoded characters (especially in vCard or Plain Text QR Codes) require a larger printing size. To ensure your Code is perfectly readable, you should do extensive field testing with various smartphones and apps, which gives you the assurance that every user will be able to scan your Code.

For more information on getting started with QR Codes, visit our Help Center page. And visit our How to Get Creative with QR Code Design page to learn more about the dos and don’ts of QR Code design for optimal results on your food packaging.

See QR Codes on Product Packaging in Action

We want to inspire you to get creative with our QR Codes and your food packaging, so here they are in action in a few fictional narratives based on real-life industries that benefit from including them in their marketing tactics.

Consumer Packaged Goods

Before the publication of their recipe book, Betty Baker used QR Codes on their cake mixes, chocolate chips, and frosting packages to offer loyal customers an e-book preview of their recipes with our PDF QR Code. And, with a customized button which linked to a pre-ordering landing page, customers were also able to order either a print or digital copy of the book, so that once it hit the shelves, the company had already made a significant profit.

Cities and Culture

For the 100th anniversary of Springfield City’s oldest bakery, the town hall decided to educate and treat their tourists and visitors with a taste of their beloved baked goods and some fun facts about the city’s history. By printing a Video QR Code on all the bakery’s bread packaging, they linked to a ten video playlist of testimonials from the oldest inhabitants on the city’s hundred-year evolution, and of videos on the bread-making process, from farming the wheat to baking in stone ovens.

Restaurants

After popular demand, Southern Restaurant launched their own brand of taco and enchilada kits in supermarkets. To continue encouraging customers to still visit their restaurants, they added our Coupon QR Code to the primary packaging of their kits, right next to a short advert promoting a restaurant meal discount for anyone who purchased their products. Consumers were then able to save the coupon on their mobile devices and, with a button customized to link to the restaurant website, knew where to find the nearest location of a Southern Restaurant to redeem their coupons.

Hotels and Resorts

Grand Hotel & Resort’s CEO wanted to raise awareness for disaster relief in a recently affected area near his home country. On every chocolate wrapper complimentary for all hotel guests, the hotel’s marketing team added the logo and name of the non-profit next to our Dynamic URL QR Code, which linked directly to a mobile-friendly landing page with a “donate now” button. The webpage also offered information on how each donation could help in their efforts to aid those affected get back on their feet.

Cafe

Dunwell were opening their own coffee shop and wanted to promote their fair trade coffee beans by adding our Image Gallery QR Code on all their coffee cups and pastry packaging. Once their customers followed the instructions and scanned the Code, they would be taken to a mobile-friendly page with their brand color, business name, a description of their fair trade efforts and a picture gallery of their coffee bean plantations and workers. Tapping on any image allowed customers to zoom, view full screen, share any image on social media or download directly to their mobile device. A customized button linked to their official website for more information.

FAQ

It’s a no brainer, QR Codes allow you to share way more information than a traditionally designed label can with a lot less space. QR Codes can be as small as 2 x 2 cm (0.8 x 0.8 in), but you can, for example, share an entire image gallery with our Image Gallery QR Code or an ebook with our PDF QR Code, without increasing the volume of food packaging. This means less visual clutter and less paper, plastic or ink waste.

QR Codes help your brand connect with your consumers and inform them about your products. A QR Codes job on food packaging is to essentially give your consumers a better idea of what your product is all about, what your brand stands for, what to expect if they decide to buy your food products or access promotional offers even before they even put it in their shopping cart. More ambitious companies use QR Codes on food packaging to not just offer provenance information, but also the option to add a product to their favorites and reorder it from the convenience of their homes. If you want to find out more about how you can help your consumers discover you through our QR Codes, check out The Purpose of QR Codes page.

You can either design your brand around the QR Code or include your QR Code within your brand’s design identity. Either way, with the advent of the branded QR Code, you are no longer restricted to its black and white past unless you want to be. Discover new design possibilities with QR Codes on our Help page.

QR Codes will only ever contain the information you decide to upload. It all depends on what you need to share with your audience. For example, a vCard QR Code will have your contact information, so clients or potential employers can contact you with ease. Check out what you can use QR Codes for by visiting our QR Codes for Every Purpose page.

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