1.18.2011

2D Barcode State of Mind

Google Insights for Search, a new application which is currently in beta, enables the comparison of search volume patterns across specific regions, categories, time frames and properties. I thought to use the application for search terms that might be used in connection with 2D barcodes and, of the information reported, I found the regional information to be the most interesting

The search terms that I entered into the application consisted of 2D Barcode, QR Code, Data Matrix, Microsoft Tag and JAGTAG, and I set the time frame for the past 12 months. The charts below list the top states by volume for each search term.

Term: 2D Barcode
  1. Illinois
  2. Washington
  3. Massachusetts
  4. Georgia
  5. Ohio
  6. New York
  7. New Jersey
  8. Pennsylvania
  9. Texas
  10. California
Term: QR Code
  1. Illinois
  2. Idaho
  3. Utah
  4. Washington
  5. New York
  6. Nebraska
  7. Iowa
  8. Ohio
  9. Kansas
  10. Minnesota
Term: Data Matrix
  1. Maryland
  2. Michigan
  3. Illinois
  4. Massachusetts
  5. District of Columbia
  6. North Carolina
  7. New York
  8. Pennsylvania
  9. Ohio
  10. Washington
Term: Microsoft Tag
  1. Washington
  2. Arizona
  3. District of Columbia
  4. Illinois
  5. New York
  6. Ohio
  7. Georgia
  8. Florida
  9. Texas
  10. Pennsylvania
Term: JAGTAG*
  1. Indiana
  2. New York
*There was not enough data for this term to draw results past these two states.
    With just this data in hand, it is difficult to draw conclusions, however, it is relatively easy to ask some pointed questions about the findings.

    • The first question that comes to mind is, what's happening in Illinois? The state ranks in the top five spots for all but the JAGTAG chart. Is there a great use of barcodes in the state, thus driving the use of the various terms that much more?
    • It comes as no surprise that the state of Washington is the top ranked state for Microsoft Tag, but it does strike me that Arizona and District of Columbia would be ranked second and third. Has the company been focusing on these regions more so than others across the country; more so than New York?
    • For JAGTAG, what's happening in Indiana that's not happening in JAGTAG's own backyard of New York/New Jersey? And why isn't the term registering in any other states?
    • Why should Maryland rank number one for the term Data Matrix, but not rank in the top 10 for any other term?    
    • What's happening in the heartland where the term QR Code ranks so high? Three of the top 10 are from the region (Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas).
    • Why does New York not rank any higher than fifth in any of the charts, excluding JAGTAG? For a state that has such a major metro market this comes as a great surprise. It is also surprising to see that California only ranks in the 2D Barcode chart, but no other.
    • With no disrespect to those that live in Idaho and Utah, it surprises me to see that these states rank second and third on the QR Code chart, respectively. I would have envisioned more populous and/or more urban states in these positions.
    With no regard to region, the search term QR Code dramatically out ranks all of the others during the given time period. Does this tell us anything about which type of barcode might be the most popular or attracting the most attention?

    It would be great to hear from readers across the country to see if they can add any additional information which might help to explain some of these findings or answer some of these questions.

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