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Device ID

Deliver different experiences for a customer’s second, third or fourth scan

Personalization is the holy grail of marketing. The more targeted your message is, the more engaged the consumer will be. Microsoft Tag’s Device ID capability helps you get that personal touch. Each phone that scans a Tag barcode, QR Code, or NFC touchpoint is assigned a unique Device ID, and Tag Manager can track which recognition technologies a device scans and how often. Armed with this intel, you can program a Tag barcode, QR Code, or NFC touchpoint to deliver a different experience with each scan. Device ID is perfect for couponing, contests, loyalty programs, and accelerating the purchase process.


Device ID information is returned when scanning a Tag barcode, QR Code, and NFC touchpoint created on the Tag platform and scanned using the Tag app. If your QR Codes or NFC touchpoints are scanned using a third party app, the Tag platform will generate a cookie to use as a unique Device ID. The cookie will expire one year from the date of the last scan and can be deleted automatically by the user or automatically by the device. If a cookie is deleted or expires, a new cookie and new device ID will be generated, which could inflate your reporting results. For these reasons, we recommend that you use Tag barcodes for Device ID experiences as they provide more consistent and reliable results.


Build customer loyalty and repeat business

A store or restaurant could offer different discounts and incentives based on how often a customer scanned its Tag barcodes. A clothing retailer might reward loyal customers with special discounts or “secret sales.” Eurest Dining Services placed Tags on disposable cups in its corporate cafés and offered various promotions based on scan frequency.

Promote contests and sweepstakes

Device ID is a great way to track contest entries and encourage repeat traffic. Brothers Bar & Grill ran a month-long promotion to win a cruise and encouraged repeat business by changing the entry Tag each day, which could only be scanned on-site. Self and Allure magazines used Tag’s Device ID to encourage repeat entries in their annual “free stuff” giveaways. Once a reader registered by scanning a Tag barcode, they could enter the contests repeatedly – in Self’s case, hourly each weekday. Device IDs also help you keep the playing field level, enabling you to exclude multiple scans in a one-entry-per-device situation.

Remember user information

Rather than have customers enter email addresses or other information over and over, you can store it with their Device ID. Next time they scan your Tag, you’ll have their info.

Streamline couponing

Coupons are gaining new luster with mobile marketers1. Mobile coupons are delivering higher redemption rates than their paper counterparts – and they're less expensive for you to produce and distribute. A customer could scan a Tag barcode on a print ad or in-store display and receive a mobile coupon, which they then apply at checkout by scanning another Tag at the register.

Scan to buy

Connecting customers' Device ID to their account information creates all kinds of sales opportunities. For example, you can add a Tag to a product’s catalog entry and let your customers scan to buy. You can take the order directly from their device or have them complete the transaction through your online site. By connecting their Device ID to their user account, each item they scan can be added to their shopping cart, and the next time they visit your site, their cart will be loaded up and ready to go.

Adding that personal touch

By collecting and storing user information you can integrate your brand into their mobile experience. For example, a transit agency can store a user’s favorite transit stops and make it easy to quickly find related routes or alternative routes home from work.

Find out more

Check out our “Tracking Scans Using Mobile Device IDs” instructional guide (.pdf). For technical information on using Device ID, see the Device ID page in our Developers section.


1Mobile Marketing & Retail Strategies: Advertising, Coupons & Smart Posters 2009-2014, Juniper Research, March 2010.

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