Before Christmas, Macy’s had an ad in the Atlanta airport which featured a QR code to make gift-giving quick and easy.  You could scan the code and do your holiday shopping while waiting for your flight.  What was surprising to me was that the ad featured all items for men; given my experience, demographics in the airport and a bit of gender bias, I would have guessed it would be more men doing the shopping instead of the receiving.

Nonetheless, it seemed like this method of purchasing could be more prevalent in retail.  Think of all the things businesses could anticipate people would want and then they could make them easier to buy.

Colleges could have a sheet of QR codes for all the dorm room essentials people invariably forget to buy until the day of move-in.  Ads could be in gas stations for shovels, salt, scrapers and winter survival needs.  The Humane Society could have a billboard to expedite purchase of everything people need for a new pet.  Jewelers could have easy access to flowers, candy or dinner reservations. Non-profits could have a quick response for donations to accompany a sad looking pet or picture of a disaster.

As money becomes more electronic and swiping a smartphone is the way everyone pays, logging into a website and entering loads of data to make a purchase will seem antiquated quickly.  Think about how you can target your appeals and make buying or donating even easier for people to do.

— beth triplett

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