QR codes don't benefit Google rankings

QR codes made a big splash when they were first released as a technologically advanced alternative to typing in a website's URL into a browser, giving businesses a new outlet to market their products.

However, Search Engine Land reports that there is little-to-no correlation between QR code implementation and an increase in Google search ranking. The search engine giant originally got behind the technology, integrating it with Google Places, which led many business owners to believe they had a newfound local search advantage.

It has since been learned that tinkering with a site's URL in order to accommodate QR code links may actually de-optimize it for search. In addition, the perceived ease of use isn't quite accurate, due to the time it takes to load a camera app, align the phone with the code, snap a picture and load the website.

Mashable associate editor Jennifer Van Grove cautions that the public is still generally uneducated about how QR codes work, and she notes that while placing the codes on a storefront ad is a creative way to market, it's important to give detailed instructions about how to properly utilize the technology.