Direct-to-Consumer (D2C) is a retail model in which a brand ships products directly to the customers instead of selling through distributors and retailers. As consumer behavior continues to become more convenience-oriented, D2C brands are experiencing rapid growth.
Marketing and customer engagement are the keys to success for D2C brands. The success of your brand will depend on how impactful your marketing campaigns are and how effectively you engage your consumers.
QR codes can help you with that. D2C brands can leverage QR codes to offer an omnichannel customer experience, resulting in more sales and revenue.
Here’s how D2C brands can use QR codes.
Why D2C: Benefits and importance
In the traditional retail business model, the brand sells its product to wholesalers, wholesalers sell it to retailers, and the retailers sell it to the end consumers.
But in the D2C model, the brand takes orders directly from the consumers and ships to them, eliminating the need for intermediaries.
Now, you must wonder what’s wrong with selling through wholesalers and retailers.
Well, there are two significant drawbacks:
- Intermediaries take commission, which increases the products’ prices and reduces the brand’s profit.
- The brand doesn’t have direct access to consumer data.
The D2C model resolves these hurdles, and thus, it has several benefits over the traditional retail model. That’s why many prominent brands like Nike and Dell have developed D2C channels.
Here are the key benefits of D2C:
- Connect directly with your consumers and collect first-party data.
- Gain complete control over your marketing and brand messaging.
- Eliminate intermediary commission and earn higher margins
- Seamlessly sell across online and offline channels
- Improve consumer experience
- Cultivate brand loyalty and drive repeat sales
Why is D2C the future of retail?
The traditional retail model has many drawbacks, and D2C resolves most if not all of them. Here are some reasons why D2C is the future of retail.
Increasing need for convenience
Customer buying behavior is changing rapidly, with the focus being significantly on buying convenience. Since D2C brands sell directly to consumers, they can offer a more convenient buying experience. Consumers can directly buy from the website or offline store and get the product without going through intermediary marketplaces like Amazon and Walmart.
The rise of omnichannel
Omnichannel retail is the new normal. People want to be able to buy from multiple channels and get a consistent experience. In fact, omnichannel brands enjoy a 250% higher purchase frequency and 13% higher average order value than their single-channel counterparts.
For brands that have traditionally been selling through a single channel, switching to an omnichannel strategy can be tormenting. However, D2C brands have the flexibility to seamlessly implement and integrate multiple channels.
Since omnichannel is the future of retail, D2C brands are future-ready by default.
Need for first-party data
Google announced the Third-Party Phase-Off in 2020 to eliminate third-party cookie tracking on Google Chrome. While this step was a big blow for marketers, it came with one big takeaway.
As third-party cookies are dying, marketers need to collect first-party data.
Here’s where D2C brands get an edge. Since D2C brands sell directly to consumers, they have access to first-party consumer data. This makes them ready for the upcoming phase in marketing that’ll prioritize consumer privacy and data integrity.
Shrinking profit margins
Brands selling through traditional retail channels are losing out on profits.
If you sell on Amazon, you’re paying 3-25% of the order value to Amazon as a referral fee or commission. Similarly, for offline channels, wholesalers and retailers take away a substantial share of your profits.
In D2C, you sell products directly through your website or offline store without intermediaries. Hence, you keep all your profits with yourself.
QR codes in D2C
In the conventional retail model, distributors promote the product and bring the consumer to it. Hence, the brand doesn’t have to worry too much about marketing.
That’s not the case with D2C. Since you’ll be selling directly to the consumer, you’re responsible for marketing your brand, bringing in consumers, and engaging them.
While there are many marketing tactics, D2C brands can’t afford to miss out on QR codes.
For three simple reasons:
- QR codes are versatile and have a plethora of use cases.
- They’re affordable.
- They’re easy to implement and manage.
What’s more, you can use QR codes to not only run standalone QR code campaigns but also support your existing marketing and advertising efforts.
Wondering how to incorporate QR codes into the marketing strategy of your brand? The following section will have you covered.
How to use QR codes for your D2C business?
Here are some of the best ways to use QR codes in your D2C business.
Bring people to your eCommerce site and drive sales
D2C eCommerce sales in the US are projected to reach $213 billion by 2024, and rightly so. Many D2C brands sell online only.
If you’re one of them, bringing potential consumers to your website is likely your biggest priority. But with so many D2C websites out there, getting high-quality traffic to your site can be challenging.
QR codes can help you bring targeted traffic to your website. Create a QR code for your website and put it on various online and offline channels, like newspaper ads, billboards, signage, emails, and more. Users can scan the QR code to reach the website on their smartphones and buy your products.
Send users to landing pages and generate leads
QR codes can also help you generate qualified leads. You can use QR codes to bring people to a landing page where they can submit their email addresses, phone numbers, and other information. You can then nurture these leads and convert them into high-paying customers.
Promote your social media profiles
Since you’re aiming to connect directly with your consumers, you must engage them on social media.
QR codes help bring users to your social media profiles and skyrocket engagement. You can create a QR code for any social media profile, and users can scan the QR code to reach the profile and connect with you. And with QRCodeChimp’s Social Media QR code solution, you can promote all your social media profiles in one place.
Enhance your product packaging
Product packaging is one of the most powerful branding and customer engagement tools. You can enhance your product packaging with QR codes and enable post-purchase customer engagement.
QR code packaging involves incorporating a QR code on your packaging to strategically send buyers to online destinations.
Here are some QR code packaging ideas to explore:
- Share in-depth product information.
- Send consumers to your website, where they can explore and buy more products.
- Share your social media profiles.
- Collect feedback and suggestions for your product.
Introduce digital experiences in physical stores
Customers nowadays expect omnichannel experiences. However, turning yourself into an omnichannel brand is not easy.
Since D2C brands have complete control over all the marketing and sales channels, they enjoy higher flexibility and can easily offer an omnichannel customer experience.
And when it comes to omnichannel implementation, there is no better tool than QR codes. With QR codes, you can bring offline consumers to online channels and bridge the offline-online gap.
You can put QR codes in your physical stores to share digital experiences, creating an omnichannel experience.
Collect feedback and reviews
QR codes are effective in generating feedback and increasing reviews. You can include QR codes inside your store or on the product packaging to send people to a feedback form. Hence, consumers can easily reach the feedback form and submit their reviews.
Create and manage QR codes for your D2C business with QRCodeChimp
By now, you must have a clear picture of how QR codes work and what they are capable of. The next step is to create QR codes. That’s where QRCodeChimp comes into the picture.
QRCodeChimp is a QR code management system that lets you run top-notch QR code campaigns for your D2C brand. You can create QR codes of various types depending on your marketing requirements to take your marketing to a new level.
Here’s how to create a QR code for your D2C brand with QRCodeChimp:
1. Visit qrcodechimp.com.
2. Go to the Solutions page and select a solution of your choice. For this tutorial, let’s create a URL QR code for your website.
3. Scroll down on the Solutions page and click on the URL QR code.
4. Head to the “Basic Information” section and enter your website URL in the “URL or Text” field. Tick the “Make dynamic” checkbox if you want to create a dynamic QR code.
5. Go to the Design, Color, and Decorate QR Code tab and customize your QR code with the given options.
6. Click on “Save QR Code,” give a name to your campaign, and click on “Save” to save it.
Your QR code will be saved in the dashboard. Now, print the QR code and put it on your marketing materials, like print ads, billboards, etc.
If you create a dynamic QR code (which you should), you can track its scans and view the analytics. Go to the Analytics section in your dashboard and check out the analytics data to measure the performance of your QR code campaigns.
You can track the following data:
- Total and unique scans
- Timeline analysis
- Hour-wise and day-wise analysis
- Device analytics
- Browser analysis
- Geo analysis
Unlike the traditional retail model that primarily favored retailers and wholesalers, the D2C model favors those who matter — consumers and brands. It’s a win-win for both, as brands can reach consumers directly and protect their margins while consumers enjoy a more convenient shopping experience.
QR codes are an essential technology for D2C brands. With QR codes, you can bring offline consumers to online channels and engage them better. You can generate leads, drive sales, collect feedback, and skyrocket consumer engagement with QR codes.
Ready to create QR codes for your D2C brand? QRCodeChimp has got you covered.