A QR code is convenient for capturing information with a mobile device’s camera. You can scan a code to visit a website and get contact information. To simplify sharing, here’s how to create a QR code in Google Sheets.
After creating and inserting a QR code in Google Sheets, you or your audience can scan it to get the additional information they need. There are two effective ways to create this code. You can use a function and formula or a Google Sheets add-on. Let’s look at both.
Create a QR code using the Image function
Google provides a link that you can insert into the Image function formula to create the QR code. This may sound complicated, but it’s actually super easy. With it, you can use the code to create a website link, contact information, and text.
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Select the cell where you want to insert the QR code. Here is a basic formula linking to a website in cell A1. We’ll break down the formula and explain the options you can use.
Here are the parts of the formula:
https://chart.googleapis.com/chart?: This is the site link you need to include to create the QR code.
chs=300x300: This determines the size of the QR code in pixels as width and height. Ours is 300 by 300 pixels.
cht=qr: This specifies the type of QR code.
chl="&ENCODEURL(A1): This determines the data to be encoded. Here we encode the link in the cell
The ampersand operators between each of these pieces connect the string. Because you can use the formula to create a QR code that does more than link to a website, let’s look at another example.
With this formula, our code provides our company phone number in cell A2. The QR code is 500 pixels wide and 400 pixels high.
To note: Depending on the size you enter for the code, you may need to adjust the column or row size of your sheet to accommodate the QR code.
You can include a few optional parts in the formula:
choe=(output_encoding): This determines how to encode the data in the QR code. The default, if omitted, is UTF-8, but you can also use Shift_JIS or ISO-8859-1.
child=(error_correction_level)(margin): QR codes offer four levels of error correction to recover misread or obscured data. You can use it to select a level.
The above is courtesy of Google Charts > Infographics. You can visit the site for more details on plan options and additional information on how QR codes work.
Create a QR code using an add-on
If you search Google Workspace Marketplace, you will find several QR code generators. For example, you might want to create codes in bulk. But for a simple QR code add-on that works well, check out this QR code creator.
Be aware that installing a third-party add-on from Marketplace means that you will need to authorize access to specified items for your Google account. Make sure you and your organization are comfortable with the security risks involved. If you decide to check out this add-on, here’s how it works.
To generate a code, go to Extensions > QR Code Generator > Insert QR Code.
This opens a sidebar for the add-on. Enter the code text or link in the box at the top. Then click “Generate”.
You’ll see your QR code displayed so you can grab your mobile device and scan the code to give it a quick test.
To add the code to your sheet, select “Insert”. The code is then displayed as a large image that you can move and resize as you wish.
The next time you want to easily share information directly from your Google Spreadsheet, consider creating a QR code using one of these options.
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