PDF to QR codes: Deliver information in a scan

QR code on pdf

How to create a PDF QR code

Converting a PDF to QR code does not require you to be a developer or any complex tools. You can either create a PDF QR code if it is hosted online or simply upload a PDF and convert it to a QR code.

Method 1: Convert a PDF to a QR code when it is hosted online Method 2: Upload a PDF and convert it to a QR code

#Method 1: Convert a PDF to a QR code when it is hosted online

(i) Create a PDF QR Code from a Google Drive link

Your Google Drive files can now be shared with a single QR code. Here’s a simple, step-wise guide on how to do that.

STEP 1: Google Drive - Copying the link of the Google Drive file

Upload your PDF on Google Drive
Upload your PDF on Google Drive
Open the Google Drive file you want to share as a QR code
Open the Google Drive to create your Google QR code
Open the file and click on three dots on the top right corner. Select ‘Share’.
Click on Share
Choose the type of access you want others to have - edit, comment or view
Share your Google file to create the QR code
Click on ‘Get Shareable Link’ and select the Link Sharing options. You can either share it within your organization or anyone with the link can be granted access. Copy the link you get.
Get the link for your Google file to create the QR code

STEP 2: Beaconstac’s QR code solution - Creating the static or dynamic QR code

We will use dynamic QR codes to illustrate the process.

Click on Create QR Code
Create QR code

You can click on ‘Preview’ to make sure you are converting the right Google Drive file to a PDF QR code.

Choose ‘PDF’ QR Code
Create PDF QR code
Paste the Google drive link
Paste the link to convert PDF to QR code
Customize the QR code by adding your preferred color
Customize the PDF QR Code
Add a logo
QR code with logo
Test and download it in your preferred format
QR code download

You can simply skip to STEP 2 to create a PDF QR code from an online link. However, for greater impact and to add compelling images and CTAs that accompany the PDF, create a markdown card.


A PDF can be turned into a QR code in 3 easy steps:

1. Generate a quick landing page using the Beaconstac platform.

You could use one of our markdown card templates or build one from scratch. It doesn’t require any coding! Here are a few examples of landing pages created for this purpose -

Upload your PDF on Google Drive
2. Link the PDF from these landing pages

Grab the URL of the digital marketing material and link it from the markdown card (mobile landing pages).

3. Creating the PDF QR code

Generate a QR code on the Beaconstac platform and assign the landing page to it.

If you are not looking to create landing pages and want to send users directly to the PDF, skip step 1 and 2. Start by creating a QR code for the digital PDF.

#Method 2: Upload a PDF and convert it to a QR code

You know what to do when you have the PDF available online. But, what if you have a PDF on your local drive and want to share that as a QR code?

It’s simple. Our QR code solution allows you to convert any PDF into a QR code instantly.

Click on 'Create QR Code'
Create QR code
Choose ‘PDF’ QR Code
PDF QR code
Upload your PDF
Convert PDF to QR code
Customize your QR code
QR code customization
Generate and download it in your preferred format
Generate QR code and download
Generate Free QR code for pdf

How to edit a PDF QR Code

Once your PDF QR code is created, you can always go back to the dashboard to either re-upload a new PDF or change the link and point to a new PDF.

STEP 1: Find the PDF QR code that you created

STEP 2: Click on Edit

STEP 3: Click on PDF QR Code

STEP 4: You can either upload a new PDF or point to a PDF link

STEP 5: Save your changes

Challenges with promoting digital magazines, catalogs and manuals with URLs

The straightforward approach to delivering online documents is to include a short URL on the sales receipt, product packaging or on posters. However, the challenge with this approach is, it works only if users remember to visit the URL. It also involves manual typing of URLs which is fine when the URL in picture is short. But it gets complicated and risky for longer URLs.

Advantages of using a PDF QR Code

Where can you use PDF QR codes

Organizations that use PDF QR codes

  1. CBIC: Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs, India is replacing paper copies of Bill of Entry and Shipping Bills that are usually a PDF with QR codes that will allow authentication directly.
  2. UIDAI: Indian Citizens can save their Aadhaar card as a QR code instead of carrying the physical card or the PDF document. This QR code contains all the information of the PDF.

How to share a PDF QR code

Now that you’ve created your PDF QR code, here are a few tips on how to share it.

1. Share it over email: Instead of having to download a PDF, users can simply scan the QR code on their smartphone for on-the-go applications.

2. Place it on documentation: You can place a PDF QR code on hard copies of important documents to let users have a soft copy of the same.

3. Add it to the study guides: Teachers can add PDF QR codes to notes that they share with the class to give their students some online resources to understand the course better.

4. Place it on tickets: Instead of having a cluttered design, you can add a PDF QR code which will let attendees know more about the event - schedule, timings and headliners. If anything changes, you can edit the PDF QR code and updated information will be available to all ticket holders.

Best practices to follow when creating & using PDF QR codes

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