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Static vs. Dynamic QR Codes:
Differences, Benefits, and What to Choose

Get the flexibility to change the destination URL without re-printing the QR Code - simple, data-rich, and built for scale.

What is the difference between a static and dynamic QR Code?

Static QR Codes cannot be edited once created, are not trackable, and cannot be used for online retargeting. Whereas dynamic QR Codes offer you the flexibility to edit QR Code content as many times as required, are trackable, and can let you retarget people online on Facebook and Google. Moreover, static QR Codes take longer to scan as compared to dynamic QR Codes.

What is a static QR Code?

A static QR Code is a QR Code that, once generated, cannot be overwritten. It can store information that is uneditable. Static QR Codes find a lot of use in instances where either the information need not be updated or for a one-off campaign. You can create different types of static QR Codes -

When to use static QR Codes?

Popular use-cases of static QR Codes

Showcase your portfolio

For individuals who just want to share their online portfolio—Medium, GitHub, or Behance—without the need for editing or tracking engagement in the future, static QR Codes might be ideal. You simply need to fetch the URL for your portfolio and link it to a static QR Code. Upon scanning, people will be able to see your work.

Direct students to an online course URL

Another use case is to redirect students to URLs of online courses that can only be accessed once via a keycode or password. Based on the authentication details provides, students can get access to a particular course, and never use the URL again.

Instantly view inventory details

As QR Codes can hold significantly more data than barcodes, it is recommended to use a QR on inventory assets. Upon scanning a static QR Code on a package, the official can instantly view the details such as product info, handler’s contact, etc., and take necessary steps.

Create & Manage Unlimited Static QR Codes

Generate unlimited QR Codes and easily manage them with Beaconstac for free.

Create & Manage Unlimited Static QR Codes

What is a dynamic QR Code?

A dynamic QR Code is a QR Code that can be edited as many times as needed without having to reprint and redeploy the code. You can update small details or change the entire URL, and avoid pesky 404 errors.

Beaconstac’s QR Code solution allows you to track information, such as the number of scans, locations, and operating systems used. The solution also allows you to convert potential leads who have scanned the QR Code but have not taken any action yet with online retargeting on Google and Facebook.

Static vs. dynamic QR Codes: Why are dynamic QR Codes better?

Static QR Codes Dynamic QR Codes
Cannot be edited once created Can be edited even after printing
Do not offer QR scan tracking Offer QR scan tracking & analytics
Cannot be used for online retargeting Can retarget users online
Have a long and complicated URL Have a short and clean URL
Take longer to scan Take less time to scan
Cannot deliver different campaigns Deliver different campaigns based on a set schedule

Benefits of dynamic QR Codes over static QR Codes

Generate Dynamic QR Codes

Easily create editable, trackable, and customizable dynamic QR Codes.

Generate Dynamic QR Codes

3 key use-cases of dynamic QR Codes

Share your updated contact details every time

With a dynamic vCard QR Code, you can share your updated contact details - name, phone number, website, profile picture, business location, and much more - with customers easily and safely. All users have to do is scan the QR Code and save the details on their smartphones without having to manually type them.

Moreover, dynamic QR Codes help you avoid reprinting costs if any information on your vCard updates over time. Suppose you change your business location, all you have to do is update the location on your vCard QR Code and it will be reflected in real-time.

Boost app downloads using one QR Code for all app stores

Using a dynamic app download QR Code, users can directly download your app without them having to manually search for it on the app store. Beaconstac lets you create a single QR Code, which upon scanning, redirects the user to the respective app store depending on the mobile OS.

This all-in-one app download QR Code can accommodate all popular app stores such as Google Play Store, App Store for iOS and iPad, and more.

Deploy a contactless restaurant menu

As contactless menus became a norm during COVID-19, their benefits ensure they are here to stay for a long time. With a dynamic QR Code menu, you can share your restaurant menu based on hours and in multiple languages, safely and conveniently. All customers need to do is scan the code and access the menu they wish to.

How to create a dynamic QR Code?

Here’s how you can easily create a dynamic QR Code -

  1. Go to Beaconstac’s dynamic QR Code generator and log in to the dashboard.
    (You can also sign up for a 14-day free trial, no credit card required)
  2. Choose the type of QR Code you want to create.
  3. Enter all relevant details.
  4. Customize the QR Code using different templates, frames, data patterns, etc.
  5. Generate and test the QR Code to ensure error-free scannability.
  6. Download the QR Code
  7. Download and deploy the QR Code.

You can also watch this quick video tutorial to learn how to make a dynamic QR Code:

Final thoughts: Should you choose a static or dynamic QR Code?

Static QR Codes are recommended only for personal or one-time campaigns that don’t need to be edited or tracked. Moreover, there’s no online retargeting available for static QR Codes.

Dynamic QR Codes are highly recommended for all sorts of marketing campaigns as they offer the flexibility to change QR Code destination or content, even after their creation. This eliminates the need for reproducing and reprinting QR Codes.

Additionally, dynamic QR Codes offer comprehensive QR scan tracking to help you fine-tune and optimize your marketing campaigns. You can also retarget (on Google and Facebook) people who have scanned your QR Code but haven’t converted yet.

Wondering what to do next? Check out our dynamic QR Code pricing plans suitable for individuals and businesses of all sizes.

FAQs about static and dynamic QR Codes

Do QR Codes change?

Static QR Codes cannot be changed once created and printed. If the link is broken, there is nothing you can do except reprint a new one. Dynamic QR Codes, on the other hand, are editable and can be edited in real-time. Since the dynamic QR Code contains a placeholder URL, the same QR Code can be reused over and over again saving time, effort, and money.

How can I create a QR Code for free?

Head over to Beaconstac’s QR Code generator and start creating your QR Code for free. You can download it in your preferred format and customize it if you want.

Note: Static QR Codes are free forever. However, you need to start a 14-day free trial or purchase a plan (Beaconstac’s plans start at $5 a month) to create dynamic QR Codes.

Can I change the destination of a QR Code after printing?

Yes, you can. If you’re using a dynamic QR Code, you can change its destination after printing. This proves why dynamic QR Codes are better suited for print marketing materials and campaigns

What’s the difference between static and dynamic QR Code pricing?

Static QR Codes are free, whereas dynamic QR Codes cost as low as $5 a month.

How do I change a static QR Code to a dynamic QR Code?

You cannot convert a static QR Code to a dynamic one as static QR Codes cannot be edited once created.

Do static QR Codes expire?

Static QR Codes don’t expire. But they cannot be tracked or modified once created.

How to change the link on dynamic QR Codes?

Step 1: Log in to Beaconstac’s QR Code management software.

Step 2: Choose the dynamic QR Code link to be changed.

Step3: Copy the new link and paste it on the URL section.

Step 4: Save the changes and test the QR Code to ensure it leads to the new destination.

Are dynamic QR Codes worth it?

Yes, they are. Dynamic QR Codes let you change their destination at any time without having to reprint them. You can also track the number of scans, locations, and devices used to measure your dynamic QR Code’s performance.

What is the difference between QR Codes and barcodes?

A barcode is one-dimensional and stores information horizontally. On the other hand, QR Codes are two-dimensional and can store information vertically and horizontally, which means they can hold more information than barcodes.

In comparison to barcodes, QR Codes can link to all kinds of information, have higher error correction levels, and can support multimedia content.

How to tell if a QR Code is static or dynamic?

Static QR Codes have denser data patterns, which is why they require a longer time to scan. Additionally, static QR Codes have longer URLs as compared to dynamic QR Codes.

Do I need a dynamic QR Code?

If you’re looking to update your QR Code campaigns and track their performance regularly, you’ll need a dynamic QR Code.

If you only have a one-off campaign that you want to run or just want to get started with QR Codes, static QR Codes can be the starting point for you.

Moreover, most free QR Code generators that offer static QR Codes force you to either display ads, redirect to their website after the free trial, offer a limited number of scans, or limit the number of free static QR Codes that can be generated.

You can avoid all these situations with Beaconstac’s free QR Code generator. The basic QR Codes are available for free, are completely customizable with your brand colors and logo, and are free forever.

Beginners Guide: How to create a QR Code

Which is better: static or dynamic QR Code?

If you’re looking for a one-off marketing campaign that doesn’t need future editing and tracking, then static QR Codes might be better for you. If you need better flexibility with your campaigns, QR scan analytics, online retargeting, faster scans, etc., then dynamic QR Codes are highly recommended over static ones.

Can a static QR Code be tracked?

No. Static QR Codes cannot be tracked. Only dynamic QR Codes provide QR scan tracking and analytics.

Create free static and dynamic QR Codes