Airtable QR code: How to use QR codes in Airtable

Last updated:   October 14, 2021

Using Airtable QR codes you can access your data in your Airtable platform, view a specific record file, or access the entire base by scanning the QR code using a smartphone device. 

So how does this work? Let's find out!

While spreadsheet programs such as google sheets, Microsoft excel, iWork numbers, and such function only as a traditional spreadsheet, Airtable can be used as a spreadsheet, backed by an entire database’s power making them convenient use. 

And while this makes your work easier, using QR codes for Airtable can make your work faster by its ability to be viewed and you can update data in your 'bases' using smartphone devices.

Let us walk you through it. 

What is Airtable, and how does it work? 

airtable

Airtable is easy-to-use online software used to create and share relational databases with a spreadsheet built on top.

Back then, users tend to avoid using databases because they can be complex and difficult to set-up, as this will require SQL (Structured Query Language) skills that will let you access and manipulate databases. 

This is where the Airtable platform comes in to save every ounce of your time with such an enduring process. 

Airtable: Works as a spreadsheet and a database.

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The fields provided using this platform are similar to cells using a spreadsheet.

However, they have types such as ‘checkbox’, templates provided, ‘phone number’, ‘drop-down list’, and many more.

Users can create highly customizable ‘Bases,’ set-up column types, add records, link tables to one another, collaborate, sort data and records, and publish views to external websites without learning SQL.

This allows you to share the data quickly and effectively across the organization. 

Moreover, they can accommodate a wide range of file types such as videos and images and store larger file sizes, unlike the spreadsheet alone. 

Airtable has six basic components: bases, tables, views, fields, records, and workspaces. 

The user will have no problem using this platform as the interface is simple, easy to navigate, and enables anyone to create a database in minutes.

What is the difference between Airtable and a spreadsheet?

Using a spreadsheet, you already have an expected format with columns, rows, and cells and can be manipulated and formatted only within that cell. 

As a database, you can link/sort records and tables from external tables to one another to create powerful and robust data links that open up more capabilities for data entries, formula calculations, and can deal with a large volume of complex data which can be a drawback using a spreadsheet. 

Let’s take the excel spreadsheet as an example as this is one of the most popular spreadsheets used. From the image below, you can tell the difference between the two.

Airtable as a DBMS database management system platform 

As we have discussed, Airtable is one of the most popular and most used spreadsheet-database hybrids, with a database’s features with a spreadsheet’s familiarity.  

With various sectors that are using databases to organize information, store and track massive data, the demand for database management systems is never-ending. 

The DBMS application in Banking, Telecommunication, Airlines, Education system, Sales, Manufacturing, HR Management, Online shopping, and so many more sectors has been relevant.

Sectors using DBMS system application and how it is applied

1.Banking

For storing customer info, tracking payments, day-to-day credit and debit transactions, generating bank statements, and other account activities has been done with the help of Database management systems.

2.Airlines           

To travel through airlines, we make early reservations, schedule information. This information are then stored in the database management system. 

3. Education system

A database system is used in most universities, schools, and colleges to store and retrieve data of the student’s information, course registrations, colleges, grades, payroll dates, etc.

4. Telecommunication

It helps to keep call records, monthly bills, maintaining balances, and also customer details. 

5. Sales 

Use for storing customer, product information & sales records, invoice details, etc.

6. Manufacturing            

DBMS in manufacturing is used for tracking product inventory and asset management systems. 

7. HR Management        

DBMS is also used in HR management to store employees’ information, salaries, payroll, deduction, generation of paychecks, etc.

8. Online shopping websites

You must be aware of the online shopping websites such as Amazon, eBay, Walmart, and many stores their product information and customer data such as your address, credit card details, preferences, and the like and provide you the relevant list of products based on your search query in a database.

Accessing information in Airtable through mobile devices using QR codes

airtable qr code

With the massive information stored in a database management system in which the data are also updated from time to time, the complexity of the data stored in the DBMS can take some time to navigate.

Using QR codes, you can display a particular data, link, or any information you want to have access to without having to spend a minute going over it.

But before we discussed that, let us first explain a QR code and how it works.

Related: How to scan QR codes with an Android phone?

What is a QR code, and how does it function? 

By definition, QR codes are A QR code (Quick Response code) and is a type of two-dimensional barcode) first designed in 1994 originally for the automotive industry in Japan.

It can store data more data than a standard barcode which makes them widely used compared to its counterpart. 

QR codes can contain any information about the item and often have data for a  URL, a locator, identifier, or tracker that points to a website or application.

The information stored in a QR code is generated through a QR code generator online.

The data in a QR code is accessible using a smartphone device by pointing the camera in a photo mode or installing a QR code reader app.

Upon scanning, it will lead the scanners to online information associated with the QR code. 

But even most of the apps we use can detect QR codes such as Messenger, LinkedIn, Snapchat, and many more.

The quick response code uses four standardized encoding modes (numeric, alphanumeric, byte/binary, and kanji) to store data efficiently which is why is it one of the most used digital tools to use because of its storage capacity and flexibility to the type of information it can carry.

Static QR code and Dynamic QR code 

static vs dynamic qr code

Though there are various QR code solutions you can generate for a specific purpose, these QR codes are either generate in static or dynamic. 

Once you generate your QR code solution in a Static QR form, it inputs data that cannot be edited once resolved. Therefore, it stays permanent. 

On the other hand, if you generate your QR code in a dynamic form for example you generate a URL QR code (which is one of the most common types of solutions) you can still replace your current URL with another URL and redirect it to another data. 

What’s more convenient in this type of data is that, even though you already have printed your QR code or have distributed them online, you can still edit the data behind your QR without reprinting your codes all over again, saving your money, time, and energy. 

Related: Static vs Dynamic QR code: What is the difference?

How to use Airtable QR codes to access the information in a specific record within a specific view in Airtable using smartphones?  

The database management system platform like Airtable already stores the data within the DBMS.

Now, to make it convenient for the user to access certain information in the database, he can generate a URL QR code and, when scanned using smartphone devices, will redirect users to the specific record within a particular view in Airtable. 

Example of a URL QR code that leads to a specific view in Airtable

airtable qr codes

Problem/Use-case scenario

I run a database (using Airtable) holding the contact details of our manufacturing orders I have on a site.

Each product has a record has a URL, and I want to have access to the QR code that links back to and opens up the record when scanned.

This would be so that when I scan their QR code which opens the record within Airtable, we can then see and track the flow and updates of our manufacturing orders. 

What I need to test and experiment with is mainly how labor-intensive generating the QR codes and then implementing them. 

The Solution: Generating a URL QR code for Airtable to view specific data (a step-by-step process)

URL QR codes can be used regardless of the type of database you hold using Airtable, whether in finance, sales, Product inventory, Retail, Healthcare, and many more. Here’s how you can do it.

1. Go to your Airtable account.

2. If you already have your data ready in your workspace, simply click your “workspace.”  

3. From your records, make sure it is set for public viewing and click the share view button and open the link in another tab. 

undefined4. Click ‘expand record (space)’ and copy the URL above

5. Go to the QRTiger QR code generator and copy the URL in the URL section to make a URL QR code to open a specific view and generate it in a dynamic QR code so you can update your QR code without reprinting it.

(You can also copy the URL of your workspace to access the overall view of your database.)

qr code generator

6. Customize your QR code and always add a call to action

customize qr code

Redirecting the QR code to “Create a form view” Airtable for a timely update of your bases

The database gets updated from time to time if there is new information that is to be added. 

For this, users can add information directly in their workspaces using only smartphone devices by merely generating a URL QR code for the “Create a form view” form. 

Accessing information in your Airtable database system made easier with the QR code technology

With the QRTiger QR code software, it is effortless and seamless to generate Bulk QR codes for your URL, so you don’t have to generate them individually.

If you have more questions, just contact us directly, and we would be happy to assist you in your QR code journey!

Related: How to track QR code with Google Analytics