QR codes facilitate the restaurant industry processes, enabling touchless payments, contactless menus, and convenient customer feedback collection. With 66% of restaurants already placing these black-and-white squares on their tables (Hospitality Technology, 2023), the dining experience is gradually going digital.

If you want to start using QR codes in your restaurant, keep reading our post. We’ll tell you about the most common use cases, real-life examples, benefits, and creative QR code ideas.

What Is the Restaurant Industry?

The restaurant industry comprises restaurants, cafes, bars, and other establishments dedicated to preparing and serving food to customers. The restaurant market is set to hit $1.93 trillion by 2033 (Future Market Insights, 2023), and adopting QR codes and other innovations will help this sector thrive.

Using QR codes for restaurants is an effective replacement for traditional practices. Ditching the usual paper menus, customers can now swiftly access digital alternatives or make instant payments for their meals, all without relying on the waiter’s service. QR codes elevate the overall experience for both restaurant owners and their clients.

Use Cases: How QR Codes Are Used in Restaurants

In the restaurant sector, QR codes are used to digitize menus, offer contactless payments, and collect valuable customer feedback. What other use cases are there? Let’s get this straight.

1. Digital Menus in Restaurants

QR codes allow restaurants to convert their paper menus into digital ones. Restaurant owners have the flexibility to create QR-code-enabled digital menus, embed PDF files, or link to web pages with the menus.

Customers, in turn, can effortlessly explore dishes, study the ingredients, and access vital allergen information. Just make your QR codes compatible with mobile devices, given that almost 98 million US citizens scan the codes using their smartphones (Statista, 2023).

2. Contactless Payments in Restaurants

QR codes introduce touch-free transactions into the restaurant sector. Now, your customers can simply scan them and secure swift payments without physical contact.

Besides hygiene and security, QR codes simplify the checkout, making it convenient for the restaurant’s personnel and customers. Adopting this use case is particularly crucial, considering that the contactless payment market will reach an impressive $12.5 trillion by 2032 (Allied Market Research, 2023).

3. Customer Feedback Collection in Restaurants

QR codes can direct clients to restaurant surveys or review platforms and become a channel for instant customer feedback. This use case lets restaurant owners get insights, promptly address issues, and refine services following customer demands.

Implementing QR codes that lead to surveys and reviews is essential for a restaurant’s long-term success. It’s especially true given that 70% of consumers worldwide consider online reviews extremely or very important in their decision making (Tripadvisor, 2021).

4. Social Media Promotion in Restaurants

QR codes are valuable marketing tools that restaurants can leverage to promote their social media pages. Customers can effortlessly scan the code and, in turn, follow, share, and check in (depending on what you ask them to do), broadening the restaurant’s reach.

Social media expands the venue’s online presence and actually helps attract more customers. Consider that about 50% of US consumers have tried a new restaurant owing to social media (MGH, 2019).

5. Streamlined Reservations in Restaurants

QR codes streamline the reservation process, letting customers easily secure their spots at the table. Upon scanning, clients are directed to reservation platforms, where they can make the necessary bookings.

Reservation systems connected to the QR codes minimize wait times and improve the venue’s operational efficiency. Implementing those is critical as 54% of customers consider restaurant reservations an extremely important feature (Toast, 2019).

Benefits of QR Codes for Restaurants

Increased operational efficiency, contactless dining experience, enhanced customer experience and data analytics are the prominent benefits of QR codes for restaurants. Here are the reasons why:

  • Efficient operations: QR codes digitize various processes, enhancing the restaurant’s efficiency.
  • Contactless experience: QR codes let customers access menus, make payments, and more without physical contact.
  • Enhanced customer experience: QR codes increase the overall comfort of customers during their restaurant visits.
  • Data analytics: QR codes let restaurant owners study customer interactions and feedback to make their venues better.

On top of these benefits, QR codes offer a competitive edge for restaurant owners. Introducing QR codes is advisable, considering that 79% of customers stated technology improves their dining experience (Rise Vision, 2023).

QR Code Ideas for Restaurants

Growing your mailing list and promoting events are just two ideas you can implement in your restaurant through a simple QR code. Explore these and more:

  1. Share a QR code that enables your customers to input their information digitally to expand your mailing list.
  2. Use QR codes to inform your customers about upcoming events or promotions in your restaurant.
  3. Create QR codes that direct your customers to virtual kitchen tours to increase engagement.
  4. Include QR codes on menu items that, when scanned, direct customers to detailed recipes or cooking tutorials.

QR Code Examples in the Restaurant Industry

Introducing loyalty programs or speeding up payments are just two examples of using QR codes in restaurants. Look at how certain companies leverage this tech in their processes:

  • McDonald’s loyalty program: This global chain of fast-food restaurants offers Rewards Points through QR codes. To collect these points and exchange them for food, beverages, and other goodies, customers have to scan their QR codes with every purchase.
  • Starbucks’ contactless payments: This global chain of coffeehouses implemented QR codes for touch-free payments.

QR Code Generator for Restaurants

MyQRCode’s QR code generator is an easy tool to make a QR code for a restaurant menu:

  1. Go to MyQRCode and click Create my QR code,
  2. Choose Menu as your preferred QR code type,
  3. Provide details about your restaurant and describe menu items,
  4. Customize your QR code’s design by adjusting colors and patterns,
  5. Review your QR code and click Finish.

Explore more menu-sharing options in MyQRCode. If your menu is in PDF format, generate a QR code for PDF files. Alternatively, create simple QR codes linking directly to your website, offering customers convenient access to your menu online.