How to Convert an Image to QR Code

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QR codes are boring: they're monochromatic and give the viewer little context for the content without accompanying text. By using an image in your QR code, you help viewers automatically understand the benefit of scanning that code. Several online services allow you to upload your own images, such as a website logo; some also offer pre-made images, such as social media logos. These services, including QRHacker, QR Code Monkey, and Visualead, offer free QR code generators that work in any browser. You can then download the image and incorporate the code into your marketing materials.

QRHacker

  • Create an account on the QRHacker website if you want to be able to keep track of your QR codes (link in Resources). However, this step is not mandatory to create a QR code.

  • Fill in the code details on the right-hand side, whether it goes to a website or contains phone number information. Once you've filled this in, click "Generate."

  • Customize your QR code in the left pane. With QRHacker you can choose to upload a photo as the background of the code, or the foreground. You can also use solid colors and modify pixel roundness.

  • Click "Save QR" to complete your code.

QR Code Monkey

  • Select the type of QR code information you're sharing from the tabs along the top of the QR Code Monkey page. It offers several options, including some unexpected ones like "Location" and "MeCard" (link in Resources).

  • Fill in the relevant information for your QR code, then select the color for that code; you can also choose to apply a "light gradient" effect.

  • Select "Include Logo/Image in QR-Code" to use either one of the default images (including social media logos and generic icons) or to upload your own photo. QR Code Monkey centers your image in the code, with no further effects available.

  • Click "Create QR-Code" to view your code; if you like it, download it either as a PNG, SVG, PDF or EPS file.

Visualead

  • Go to the Visualead Create QR Code page (link in Resources). You need an account to save a QR code, but will not be prompted to create one until the end of the process. Free accounts are limited to creating three codes. You can delete codes at any time.

  • Select the type of QR code you intend to create. Visualead has a large number of variations, including coupon codes, rich text codes, codes that create tweets, and others that can be helpful to businesses.

  • Upload the image you want to use in your QR code, or use one of Visualead's default images With the image uploaded, you have a host of customization options. You can crop the code down to only a portion of the image, select pixel roundness, choose which generation of QR code to use, and modify other visual effects to make your code stand out.

  • Click "Generate QR" to view the code. If you don't like how it turned out, change your settings and click "Try Again." Keep at it until you get the perfect code for your needs. Click "Next" when the code is just as you like.

  • Create an account with Visualead when prompted. You can use your email address, or connect with either Facebook or Google. After you have set up your account, Visualead redirects to your dashboard, where you can download the QR code.

Tips & Warnings

  • Maintain good contrast between the foreground and background when using a photo in a QR code; if a code reader can't detect the boundaries of a code, it will not work.
  • Always test your code with multiple phones before taking it live.
  • This article refers to options and websites as they were available when written in July 2014. Features and availability may vary depending on time and location.

References

  • Photo Credit Anatoliy Babiy/iStock/Getty Images
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