Tips for Success

Show all

How Restaurants are Using QR Codes to Drive Sales

How Restaurants are Using QR Codes to Drive Sales

QR codes seem to have made a comeback in the last few years and have proven to be valuable tools for all sorts of small businesses, and restaurants are no exception. If you’ve recently visited any of your favorite local restaurants, you’ve probably encountered a QR menu, but that isn’t all these codes can do.  

Although QR codes are not new to the marketing scene, many restaurant operators have yet to utilize them for all their worth. A QR code can be used for anything from flyers to social media posts to help boost your restaurant’s visibility and increase sales. Incorporating QR codes into your marketing plan can significantly increase your revenue without requiring a massive investment in new marketing materials. 

 Dining In 

When it comes to creating a safe dining experience, less contact with your wait staff will create a safer dining experience in your restaurant and the safer your team members will be. Including QR codes on each of your tables is a cost-effective way to provide your guests with digital menus without any added expenses. Your customers can use the QR code to access your menu on their mobile phones, and they can place an order with just a few quick clicks.  

Using QR code menus will eliminate having to supply disposable menus or sanitizing menus between each use. Not only are you reducing the amount of waste and risk of contamination, but when your restaurant is clean, your guests will return for another meal. You can also allow your guests to join the waitlist from a distance. Limit crowding at the host stand by posting a waitlist QR code in the entryway and windows so guests can quickly and conveniently join your waitlist online with their mobile device.  

Take Out 

QR codes have also proven to be useful for takeout and delivery as well. From the comfort of their homes, your customers can scan a QR code and be taken directly to your online ordering menu. This won’t require downloading a special app; customers will be able to use their camera to scan the code and check out your menu items right away.  

You can also encourage your guests to book a reservation at your restaurant using a QR code. Give your customers the option of booking a table with ease by scanning a QR code that takes them directly to the reservation link on your website. Add this QR code to promotional materials, business cards, and flyers so guests can scan the codes whenever and wherever is most convenient.  


QR codes are an easy and inexpensive way to drum up some more business for your restaurant. Posting your QR code to your social media feeds will increase visibility and let your customers know that they now have new ways to place an order with your restaurant. Instagram can be an effective platform to post on to keep your restaurant front of mind for your customers. Adding a QR code to your Instagram takes potential customers from knowing about your restaurant to placing a food order directly from their feed.  

Some other ways to market your QR codes include: 

  • Receipts: Including a QR code on your receipts can lead to repeat orders from existing customers.  

  • Restaurant tables: Providing contactless menus by placing print materials with your QR code at each restaurant table will minimize paper waste and provide a safer environment. Let your customers know they can alert you when they’re seated by providing a table number and instructions with a QR code.  

  • Takeout containers: Takeout containers with QR codes are a great way to generate repeat orders for your business. You could add your QR code to your menu or swap out your menu with a QR code flyer.  

  • Promotional emails: When sending out marketing emails, include your QR code. Remind your customers that you’re putting their health, safety, and convenience first.  


Unfortunately, using QR codes presents a few issues that print menus don’t. Some QR code-generating companies can provide you with helpful information about your customers’ demographics, including age, gender, and other information. While this can be helpful to your business in planning your menu and targeting advertisements, your customers may not be comfortable with having their data shared in this way.  

Another major issue with QR codes is the possibility for scammers to hijack your codes. If an individual places a different QR code sticker over the one you have provided your guests, it can be challenging for your customers and team members to spot the difference. QR codes will also send the phone directly to a link without giving your guest a chance to inspect the destination, enabling scammers to redirect your customers without them even noticing. This means that your guest may accidentally send money to the scammer, compromising payment data and stealing money out of your pockets. Not only is this dangerous for you and your customers, but it can ruin your relationship with the guest.  

QR codes aren’t the answer for all restaurants, but they are likely here to stay for many and are worth some consideration. Think about the specific needs of your business and embrace the option that works best for you!