As a rule of thumb, bar codes are generally used to help stores keep an eye on their inventory and to make the point-of-sale process run more smoothly. However, what many people don’t realize is that bar codes have many advantageous qualities that go far beyond this. Bar code technology is continually developing and bar codes are being used in more innovative ways every day.

Need some convincing? Here is a list of 5 unusual ways bar codes are being used that depict their significance in the dynamic world of technology.

Bar codes in advertising:

Advertisers are taking full advantage of the many benefits of bar codes by using them to better communicate with consumers in a more engaging, exciting and unique way. Advertisers are using 2D bar codes to hold a one of a kind resource locator that, when scanned, will take you to a certain website or page on that website. This is useful for the consumer because it allows them to find out a huge amount more information on a product and is simultaneously useful for marketing as it is a cool and quirky way to advertise that draws customers in – a win for both!

Bar codes in Pop Culture:

Bar codes have had such an influential impact that architects have been inspired to create buildings that resemble them. There is a building in St. Petersburg, Russia that was designed to imitate the linear lines of the bar code. Directors of famous pop culture movies haven’t even been able to escape the influence of the barcode! If you look closely at the number plates on the cars in the movie Back to The Future (Universal,1985) you can see that they are bar codes instead of ordinary license plates.

Bar codes in tickets:

Bar codes are being used to scan tickets to movie theatres and events to confirm the validity of the ticket and the ticket holder before admission is allowed. These kinds of bar codes are being used in their 2D form, which is handy because it means people can keep their tickets on their smartphones and no longer have carry around printed tickets. Not only is this more cost-effective, but it also allows the organizers to keep track of ticket sales and revenue a lot easier.

Bar codes in recycling:

If you are wondering how to get a bar code into recycling, here’s the answer: RecycleBank, based in New York, has begun adding bar codes to recycling bins in order to incentivize people to recycle. How does this work? The bar code is automatically scanned when the bin is picked up, and the value of the items recycled is then transformed into a dollar amount which can then be redeemed for shopping coupons for those who participate.

Bar codes in healthcare:

Do you know how to create a bar code to save a life? The healthcare industry sure does and is using bar codes throughout their supply chain, from the wristbands patients wear right down recording the medication that is administered. Bar codes have found great importance in labelling lab samples, as now the possibility of incorrect labelling and inaccurate lab results is almost entirely eliminated.

Yes, you can use bar codes in their traditional ways including keeping track of inventory, tagging products or managing invoices. However, these days the uses of bar codes are so far-reaching and these are just a few examples of the unique styles in which bar code technology is being used which show that bar codes will not become obsolete any time soon. In fact, there has never been a better time to buy bar codes to help elevate your small business to the next level.

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