Making use of QR Codes

QR codes have been around for a while, though became highly adapted by the restaurant industry during the pandemic- when contactless methods were highly recommended. As regulations are eased and we go back to normal, QR codes are here to stay- as customers are now well adjusted and used to this new convenient way of contactless living. Half of all full-service restaurant operators in the United States have added QR code menus since the start of the pandemic, according to the National Restaurant Association. ¹

How They Work:

Place the QR codes on table tops, on curbside banners or directly at ordering stations. When a consumer scans the QR code, they will be able to view a link that pops up on their smartphones, creating a convenient and contactless experience.


At a time of a nation-wide labor shortage where many restaurants struggle to sustain with little help, QR codes can be a huge help for their operations. Tom Sharon, a co-founder of Cheqout, a technology start-up for digitizing menus says "Restaurants that use QR code menus can save 30 percent to 50 percent on labor costs by reducing or eliminating the need for servers to take orders and collect payments." ²

Not only does it allow convenience and efficiency, QR codes have have the ability for businesses to track and analyze data. The codes can store digital information such as when, where and how often a scan takes place.

How to Create One:

1. Go to qr-code-generator.com or qrcode-monkey.com. Both are free to use.

2. Upload your content (whether it is a URL, PDF, JPG, PNG, etc)

3. Customize it: Set the colors, add your business logo, and choose the shape of your QR code.

4. Click the Create QR Code or Download button.

Ways to Use Them for Your Business 

  • Menus as the primary use

Not only is this convenient for customers to see what you offer, but also allows for your menu to be more flexible to sudden changes. 

  • Link to your social media accounts 

Social media can increase your following, reaching new and current customers to build loyalty. Want more followers on your accounts? On your marketing collateral, add the social icons you currently are active on with a QR code next to them linking to your profiles.

  • Offer specials or promotions

Promotions and specials can be further broken down by scanning the code. Put one on your pizza box for their next visit!

  • Display photos of your food

Give them a taste and feel for what they will expect from your food. Use this method especially if the menu item is difficult to describe or is particularly impressive in its presentation. 

  • Process a payment 

Customers do not need to wait for a cashier, allowing for quicker service. Link to a secure online ordering site. 

  • A link to review your business 

Lacking solid reviews on Google? Link to your google business review survey. Encourage happy customers to scan to give your restaurant some praise. 

  • Link to vote on a new menu item 

Don't know if your new item launch will be a success? Have your guests vote on it to find out. Link to a Google form or a Survey Monkey form. 

Think about how a QR Code could benefit your restaurant’s success or overall customer experience. Get creative with it!


1. Bloomberg Dining Out Digitized June 2021

2. New York Times QR Codes Are Here to Stay. So Is the Tracking They Allow. July 2021