I built the initial version of Qyrr 3 years ago, in the summer of 2019, before Covid came along.
It was just a fun little idea in my head, and I never intended to rework it or do a premium version of it. I uploaded it the w.org and kept pushing little updates now and then but never invested too much time into it.
In mid-2022, I realized that my little QR Code plugin had grown to over 1000 active installations and got a total of 10 five-star reviews over that time – not that much but compared to other plugins I started earlier with a pro version, this was at least an indicator that there is some interest in that topic.
Planning Qyrr Pro
I spend some time researching the existing plugins to create QR Codes in the WordPress Repository and CodeCanyon to get a general idea of what others are doing, which features they are providing, and if there is a (successful) commercial version of the product.
Most existing plugins focus on a thing that doesn’t really make sense to me: displaying QR Codes on your own website – what the heck? But fine, I also implemented a Gutenberg Block and Shortcode for that just in case there is some serious use-case for that.
What do premium QR Code plugins include?
- offering different types of QR Code types (text, WhatsApp, URLs, vCards..)
- give the user a flexible tool to style the QR Code
- dynamic QR Codes (you can change the URL without changing the QR Code)
- print QR Codes
Fine, I included all of that in my must-have list for the pro version of Qyrr.
What do SaaS QR Code tools include?
There are millions of QR Code SaaS tools out there (at least it feels like that), and each time I visit Indie Hackers or Product Hunt, there seems to be a new one popping up. That makes total sense as Covid has drastically increased the interest and the usage of QR Codes.
Besides the same offerings, the existing plugins in that landscape have (customizable QR Codes, different types, dynamic QR Codes), there are mainly two things that almost always are included in SaaS offerings in that space:
Dynamic QR Codes with Tracking
This comes in many different shapes, but all have implemented tracking with a little (or large) dashboard to view stats like scans, conversions, location, and more.
Almost all of the SaaS tools provide a bulk generation tool to quickly generate thousands of QR Codes from a created template by only changing a parameter (like the URL) or dynamically adding a number to it (for tracking).
Awesome, I included both of them in my list for the pro version of Qyrr, and I had my final feature set.
I’m always a fan of spending money if it makes sense and saves time. Pricing is always hard, but it seems to be completely broken within the QR Code space. Existing WordPress Plugins are selling for peanuts, while most SaaS tools in that space are insanely expensive.
I mean, sure, you can track and bulk generate QR Codes with that SaaS tool, but common $59 per month for the Basic plan? That’s ridiculous.
I decided to go the middle way and priced the single license for $49per year.
The new Qyrr
Here is a little video I created that showcase all of Qyrr’s features:
I learned quite a lot while building the new version of Qyrr with React, and you will find many of those things within my other products in the future. One thing that will find its way into Passster, Filr, and Simply Static this year will be the new admin settings UI I built for Qyrr: it’s clean, simple, but really flexible and reactive:
As a solo developer, I love synergies between my products. The new admin UI is an excellent replacement for the old settings framework solution I built almost eight years ago.
Even if Qyrr Pro will not be one of my financial high-performing plugins (who knows?) I learned so much during the process that it was still worth it.