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Blog // Connect Michigan

Going Car Shopping? Use QR Codes to Kick the Tires

By Wil Payton

Showrooming photoWhen buying a car, today’s consumers like to browse and research when it fits their busy schedules. They can pass on the face-to-face selling techniques; they just want the facts, and dealers are using QR (Quick Response) codes to provide a tool to leverage that interest and promote sales.

Originally designed for industrial uses, QR codes have become common in consumer advertising. Users with a QR-code scanner installed on their smartphone can scan the code to convert it to a URL directing the smartphone's browser to the website of a company, store, or product associated with that code providing specific information.

Below is an excerpt from a Crain’s Detroit Business article on the subject:

Because people can't order a car online the way they can buy books, TVs or clothing, mobile phones haven't cut into dealerships' sales in the same way they have affected other brick-and-mortar retailers. (The process of shopping for items in person then getting them online for less is known as "showrooming," and smartphones have made it more common by giving shoppers an immediate way to compare prices.)

But more consumers want to use a similar approach with car shopping, and many dealerships that make it easier to do so have had positive results. By posting scannable quick response — or QR — codes next to traditional window labels, stores can guide shoppers and try to capture their business even on evenings or Sundays when no sales staff is present.

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