QR Codes vs NFC Tags on Metal Business Cards

Published October 10, 2022 | Last updated on November 18, 2022

Author: My Metal Business Card

Qr Codes Vs Nfc Chips For Metal Cards

Should you get metal business cards with QR codes or NFC tags? With modern technology constantly evolving, it can be difficult to keep up and decipher which is the best option!

We want to make sure you feel prepared with all of the information to make the decision which best suites your needs and maximizes your communication. Let’s go through the ins and out of NFC Tags and QR Codes, and to help figure out which option (if not both) suits your needs!

Gunmetal Nfc Business Card

Which is the best option for business cards – QR Codes or NFC Tags?

Advancements in contactless technology have led businesses to search for the best solutions that encourage offline to online customer interactions. 

Business cards are no different with QR Codes and NFC Tags competing in popularity, yet highly debated. With both of these proximity based technologies built into most current smartphones, which is the best to utilize?

We are going to break down the most important factors to consider when deciding between these two similar yet varying…

Comparing NFC Tags and QR Codes on Metal Business Cards

1. Interaction & Use

Stainless Steel Metal Business Card

The main difference between QR Codes and NFC Tags is how the device is triggered. 

QR Codes are activated by a user scanning a machine-readable optical label that contains encoded information.

NFC Tags work by tapping the business card/chip (just like contactless credit card payments) to a smartphones scanning point. Scanning points on smartphones may vary based on the carrier and model.

NFC Tags and Chips tend to be more convenient than QR Codes in terms of interaction and use as you’re utilizing a tap function rather than opening a focusing a camera lens on a specific code.  QR codes require their user’s device camera to capture the code in proper lighting and with correct alignment.  NFC Chips, on the other hand, just require a “tap” from NFC-enabled smartphones.

NFC Chips do have a radius of a mere 4cm (1.5 in), so most of the time the user’s smartphone needs to directly contact the card/chip for the information transfer to be successful. If you are worried about physical contact, then a contactless QR code would be the way to go. 

2. Cost of QR Codes vs. NFC Tags

Black Metal Business Card With Nfc Chip

QR Codes can easily be silver laser etched into the metal or screen printed on the surface of our cards, which is included in the standard pricing. This makes a QR code an easy upgrade to your business cards at absolutely no additional charge.  

NFC tags, require the use of a thicker .8mm steel in order to accommodate the embedding of the chip into the Metal Business Cards via an industrial adhesive.  The NFC chips also have to be encoded with a website URL during the production process.  For these reasons, NFC Metal Business Cards are going to come in at a higher price point than their QR Code counterparts. 

3. Customization and Design Options of QR Codes and NFC Tags

Rose Gold Finish Metal Card Qr Code

QR code customization is limited by its readability requirements and the amount of information it is associated with.  The code must be visible for scanning and the colors used must provide enough contrast against the surface of the card to be read by a smartphone camera. The good news is a business can often incorporate their logo and, in somes cases, their brand colors into the QR code.  The Rose Gold Metal Business Card for NARA-YA seen above is a great example!

Depending on the complexity of the code, the minimum printed size may vary, as the size of the squares within need to be printed or etched clearly. We typically do not recommend a QR code any smaller than 1 x 1” to ensure legibility.

NFC Tags offer slightly more flexibility when it comes to design in the fact that we can print over the NFC Chip with your desired imagery.  While we cannot fully hide and embed the NFC Chip in our Metal Business Card due to signal interference with the internal antenna, it does offer the additional options for design.

4. Post-Production Changes to Your Cards

White Metal Card

No modifications to QR Codes are possible after having them etched or printed on a Metal Business Card. If changes are needed for a code, generating a new one and printing it again is necessary in order to change the location the QR code scans to.

The one exception to this is if a web link, landing page like Linktree is used as the scan destination. Since the URL is static, the information/links contained on the landing page can be changed without affecting the URL that the QR Code points to.

NFC Tags can be reprogrammed at any time by the owner of the Metal Business Card using the NFC Tools app.  This serves as a major advantage because it saves time and money  from having to reorder your Metal Business Cards with a new QR code if the information changes.

Gunmetal Nfc Business Card Mymetalbusinesscard

 And the winner is…

Black Metal Nfc Business Card

Well, as with many things in life… it depends!

Do you value convenience and the impressive draw of new technology? Then an NFC Metal Business Card would be the way to go.

Are you a little more price conscious and prefer slightly more demonstrable methods of transferring information? Then a QR code on a Metal Business Card may be the best option.

The great news is that with My Metal Business Card, you never have to settle on one technology over the other – and you can actually enjoy both a QR Code and an NFC Tag on the same card!

Black Metal Nfc Business Card Custom Cutouts

Think we missed something, or have any questions about NFC tags and QR codes?

Feel free to give us a call at 714.213.8155, use the chat widget, or Contact Us!