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Mobile bar code scans increase 300pc year-over-year: Scanbuy

Mobile bar code scanning saw a 300 percent increase in 2011 compared to 2010, according to a new study from Scanbuy.

Scanbuy?s trend report for the fourth quarter of 2011 focused on how publishers and marketers are using mobile bar codes and found a substantial increase in consumer packaged goods brands using QR codes to elevate their campaigns. The study also broke down mobile bar code statistics for users, including age, location and time.

?Consumer packaged goods brands tend to adopt technology as it becomes more mainstream for their consumer audience,? said Mike Wehrs, president/CEO of Scanbuy, New York.

?The fact is that millions of people now have smartphones, and they are using those devices to get more information wherever they may be,? he said.

?QR codes are an amazing way to deliver that content in an engaging and simple way.?

Mobile scans
The Scanbuy report found that the three most common areas that mobile bar codes appear in are magazines and newspapers, on-pack products and direct mail.

Consumer packaged goods brands were the No. 1 industry for mobile bar codes, showing the importance that mobile plays for on-package labeling.

Other top industries for mobile bar code scanning included retail, entertainment, editorial and wireless.

The study looked closely at the age and gender of QR code users and found that more than one-third of consumers who scan mobile bar codes are under the age of 25.

Specifically, 28 percent of mobile bar code scans came from users ages 25?34. 

Males outnumber females with mobile bar code scanning, per Scanbuy.

The study found that 63 percent of males were scanning QR codes compared to the 37 percent of females who were scanning.

The report also looked at mobile bar code scanning by device. Android leads the pack with 50 percent of mobile bar code scans followed by iPhone with 39 percent. BlackBerry scans made up 6 percent of Scanbuy?s findings followed by Symbian with 4 percent.

Additionally, Scanbuy saw that its registrations increased 360 percent year-to-year.

Marketer adoption
The study also looked at how mobile bar code scanning differs by country.

The United States continues to hold the No. 1 spot with the most mobile bar code scans. Spain, Canada, Denmark and France rounded out the top five countries.

Additionally, Israel made the No. 10 list for the first time, showing how mobile bar code scanning is becoming more prevalent internationally.

According to Scanbuy?s findings, 50 percent of marketers are using mobile bar codes. Eighty-six percent of marketers plan to either continue using them or will roll out initiatives in the future.

During Black Friday, QR code scanning received the most activity in the morning and late at night, showing that consumers are using their devices to comparison shop.

?The growth in consumer adoption is moving very quickly, and it is closely reflecting the curve on smartphone activation,? Mr. Wehrs said.

?We expect marketers to move beyond the test and learn phase into national and international deployments that will really make an impact to their business,? he said.

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is editorial assistant on Mobile Marketer, New York