PhonePe Merchant Photo QR is a brilliant move

Hitanshu Gandhi    Updated
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PhonePe brought the “Sadak se utha ke tujhe star bana dunga” meme to life with its merchant photo QRs.

This is an absolutely interesting insight / experiment that gets me really excited. What about you?

Here’s what I like:

Taps Vanity to grab prime real estate:

  • Vanity and a need for validation exists in every single one of us
  • The roadside vendor may be a nobody for us LinkedIn folks but s/he are the unsung heroes of their families, communities and this country
  • Is this the first time a big corporate has spent money to make their retailers heroes in their own small way? Maybe
  • QR code placement is ALL about location especially for small vendors
  • If I were a small vendor, I would put this QR code at eye level – on the most prime empty spot

Attracts customer attention (for now): For UPI users who are ambivalent, this may attract higher clicks simply out of novelty factor

Solves identity verification: No more scanning the QR code to ask “PayTM QR says Bhupendra Prajapat. Is that you?”

What is your instinctive reaction as a customer? As a merchant?

What may happen when everyone copies this tactic? Esp clever aggressive companies like BharatPe and PayTM?