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Questions:

1.In which stage(s) of the consumer decision?making process may QR codes be of particular relevance?

2. Do you see a marketing opportunity for QR codes in the services sector? Explain why or why not, and illustrate your answer by using examples from the services sector such as retail, financial services, health services, public sector utilise and transport?

3. The case study offers examples of how QR codes can bypass multiple layers of distribution and support marketing . Specific to the services sector what are some potential advantages of this?

4. How may QR codes affect consumers’ perceived risk of products within the services sector?

5. Which other forms of interactive content and/or information may be developed to support service operations and customer satisfaction in the future?
 
 

Answers:

Introduction

Introduction of QR codes contributed significantly improvement of advertising and enhancing efficiency for an organization. The codes help an organization to offer customers a chance to obtain extra information about the product or the company itself. QR codes offer companies an excellent chance for advertising because the symbols used can be used be converted into video and thus helping to convey the message to the customer. The QR code works in such away a way that the company uses a QR code generator to design a readable and interesting message (Dacko, 2012). For the customer to see or read the message or the content of the QR code, they should have a smart phone which has QR reader application. One of the advantages of QR code over bar codes is that consumers will tend to spend more time on the company’s website which may influence their decision to buy. QR codes are capable of holding bulk information which makes it very convenient for companies using it. This report analyzes how QR codes influences the decision making processes for individual consumers. It also analyzes the use of the codes in marketing and how efficient they are.

1. QR codes are used in several stages of consumer decision making process. The first stage in which

QR codes are used by decision makers is the information searching stage. This is the stage where a customer gathers information about a particular product or line of product after identifying his/her needs. Searching of information helps the consumer to make informed purchase decisions. Since QR code offers quick access to a company’s information, the consumer can therefore obtain useful information from the website (Bryson & Daniels, 2015). The website may contain information on product offered, description, prices, after sale services offered and other useful information on the product that the consumer wants to buy. Therefore, by using QR codes, a company such as Gellerie can provide information on a product to the consumers easily. QR codes are also useful in evaluation of alternatives by the consumer. The consumer can scan the QR code and get access to the different types of products offered by a particular company. For example a McDonald’s customer can identify the available flavors and varieties of Pizza by using QR codes (Haase, 2011). A customer can also compare different companies by accessing their QR codes. QR is also important in the post purchase evaluation. Consumers can compare what they bought with what was promised in the QR code. Consumers also obtain usage prescriptions and manual for machines and equipment to guide them in using the product.

2. There is huge marketing opportunity in the service sector. This is because, QR codes helps in making provision of services more efficient. This is therefore very important since the aim of every service provider is to offer efficient and reliable services to its customers. QR codes can be used in the retail business to check information on a product. An example is when a consumer wants to buy a product in a supermarket; he/she can scan the QR code to obtain information on the manufacturer of the product. A QR code can also be used in the financial services industry. Banks can place QR codes in their products such as cheques which customers can scan to get information on the state of their account and market the institution to its customers. The banks can include information on products offered and interest rates. QR codes can also be used in the health services sector. An example is an hospital issuing its patients QR codes to identify the period of time it will take them to be served and their number in the queue (Kotler, Armstrong, & Harris, 2017).This will help to eliminate physical queuing by patients. In the transport industry, QR codes can be used in place of paper tickets. Customers can book to travel online and then obtain a unique QR code which contains their identification details and all other relevant information.

 


3.
The fact that use of QR codes help in bypassing multiple layers of distribution and support marketing. This not only applies in the goods market as well as in the service market. The advantages of bypassing multiple layers of distribution in the service sector include; Increasing efficiency in an organization by reducing the time taken to serve each customer. This happens by reducing the procedures that a customer should go through before getting the service they require. The use of QR codes are important in reducing layers of distribution by making it possible for customers to obtain some services online instead of physically. QR codes helps an organization to market the services it offers by giving customers QR through which they can access extra information about the company (Russell, 2010).

By reducing support services, the organization will be able to reduce costs that it would have otherwise incurred and therefore its important in reducing costs which in turn increase profit margins. The level of customer satisfaction is  also increased when layers of distribution reduce. This is very important in maintaining existing customers by an organization.

4. QR codes affect perceived risks of a product through various ways. One of the ways in which the use of QR codes has affected the perceived risk in the service industry is that it has reduced the risk of delay in getting services. Time Is a very important factor especially in the service industry and therefore, there is always a risk not getting the services a consumer needed on time. Since use of QR codes helps in reducing distribution layers and reducing the time taken to serve each customer, the use of QR codes will reduce the perceived risk of delay in service delivery. QR codes also reduce the perceived risk of getting poor services from an organization (Woodall, 2007). By using the QR codes, customers are assured of good services from the service provider since the QR code offers important information on the services offered and the organization itself. The use of QR codes helps to reduce the perceived risk of loss of confidentiality. Since most consumers of services are very concerned about confidentiality, the use of QR code will help reduce the risk of unauthorized persons gaining access to their private information.

5. Use of QR codes has been very fundamental in improving service support and customer satisfaction both in the service industry and the product market. There are other forms of interactive content that can be developed to improve service delivery. One of this content is the development of a self service application that can be used by customers to obtain services online. This will help the customers to get the service they require very quickly and conveniently without having to visit the facility physically. Development of a machine that can be used to make deposits in the bank like an ATM is used for withdrawing would be important in improving services and customer satisfaction in the financial services industry. This will help in eliminating long queues in the banks.

Recommendations

QR code should be used by companies more in promoting and advertising their products and services. This will help in reducing the costs incurred by organization in advertising. Organizations should be innovative and embrace the use of interactive technology in adding value to the services offered to consumers

 

References

Bryson, J. R., & Daniels, P. W. (2015). Handbook of Service Business: Management, Marketing, Innovation and Internationalisation. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing.

Dacko, S. (2012). Time?of?day services marketing. Journal Of Services Marketing, 26(5), 375-388. https://dx.doi.org/10.1108/08876041211245290

Haase, M. (2011). Service-Dominant Logic for Marketing. Marketing ZFP, 33(2), 98-110. https://dx.doi.org/10.15358/0344-1369-2011-2-98

Information Resources Management Association. (2016). Web-based services: Concepts, methodologies, tools, and applications.

Kotler, P., Armstrong, G., & Harris, L. (2017). Principles of marketing (1st ed.). New York: Pearson.

Russell, E. (2010). The fundamentals of marketing (1st ed.). Lausanne: AVA Academia.

Woodall, T. (2007). New marketing, improved marketing, apocryphal marketing. European Journal Of Marketing, 41(11/12), 1284-1296. https://dx.doi.org/10.1108/03090560710821170

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