DIY: How to create a barcode-thingy

Howdy guys,

Last week I had a dentist appointment and while waiting at the reception, I scanned through the endless supply of pamphlets provided. One of the pamphlets had a QR code on the back and I was slightly surprised because I didn’t know they still “do those” anymore. Out of pure boredom, I scanned the code on my phone to see if it still works and turns out, this particular vendor had a very nice, clean, mobile-friendly page that contained a lot of its company’s information. I was so impressed that I thought I’d do a post on how to create your very own QR code.

The other day I mentioned my idea of doing a QR code blogpost to my sister but she had no idea what I was talking about. After a few minutes of using unfamiliar words and gestures to try and explain myself, she finally exclaimed, “Oh the code-thingy? Why didn’t you just say that?” So yes, I’m gonna run through how you can create a ‘code-thingy’ (aka a QR code).

Let me start off by posting a QR code for those who still have no idea what exactly it is. This is how it looks;

QR Code6

Right, so unless you’ve spent the past decade under a rock, you know exactly what a QR code is. But before I delve into how to create one, there are a few rules to it;

A QR code is a two dimensional barcode that stores information in black and white dots (called data pixels or “QR code modules”). Besides the black and white version, you can also create a coloured QR code. For these codes to work without problems, make sure the contrast is sufficient and the result is not a negative (in terms of color). To make your QR code even better, you can also get a QR code with a logo.

You should also understand that a QR code should ‘link’ to ‘something’. This ‘something’ can be a website url, an email address, a social media page, or even a picture. So firstly make sure that you know where you want to link your QR code to.

There are quite a few online sites that provides this service (you can google it), but here are the two I use most of the time:

For this tutorial, I’ll use for a quick demonstration. So lets dive straight into it. Suppose I’d like to create a QR code for my blog’s Facebook page. So from the dropdown list I’ll select ‘Facebook’, see highlighted in yellow below.

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Next I’ll copy/paste my facebook pages’ URL ( into the “2. Content : Website URL” space provided. Again, see highlighted in yellow below;

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You’ll have the option of selecting either a ‘static’ or a ‘dynamic’ QR code. According to the site, the difference between the two is;

  • Static QR Code: The actual destination website URL is placed directly into the QR code and can’t be modified.
  • Dynamic QR Code: A short URL is placed into the QR code which then transparently re-directs the user to the intended destination website URL, with the short URL redirection destination URL able to be changed after the QR code has been created.

And since I’m all for shorter URL’s, I’ll select the dynamic QR code.

Next, you can decide what colour you’d like your QR code to be. I’m a plain kinda girl, so I’ll select black and white, i.e. the normal, boring one.

QR Code10

Next you can download the code in whichever format you perfer, i.e. either a pdf file or for emailing purposes. I chose the pdf file, see highlighted screenshot below;

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A new page will open prompting you to select a ‘paper size’. I selected the very first one, see highlighted in yellow below;

QR Code4

QR Code5

And tada! Your QR code has been created and is ready to be used! If your phone has a Barcode scanner, I’d recommend that you scan the QR code you’ve just created right there from your PC screen to ensure that all works 100%. You shouldn’t have any trouble, but if you do, try to create another one and see if it works. If not, then perhaps there’s something wrong with your barcode scanner or phone.

But if it did, then yay! You have created your very own QR code! Print them, copy them, share them, do whatever you like with them. I used this website so often at my previous job and it worked beautifully! I created QR codes for all departments, linking back to website pages and pictures and facebook and twitter, it was awesome! I was the office hero.

Hope it works as great for you as it did for me. If you liked this little tutorial, please let me know so I can share more of these kind of tips with y’all. Please also share it if you think it could benefit some of your friends. As always, please subscribe to my blog (see top right hand side →). Please also follow me on twitter and follow my blog on facebook. I’ll be posting a lot more tutorials like this over the coming months.

Till next time…xoxo