How to make a contactless menu: The ultimate guide

Last updated:   September 14, 2022

You’re probably wondering what a contactless menu is, or how to make contactless menu for your business that generates more revenue and influences more orders? Well, you've just found the right article.

QR codes have long been used mainly in packaging and mobile payments. It was not until 2020 that QR menus were introduced and skyrocketed in popularity. 

About 61% of restaurants in the US don’t plan on returning to paper menus. Moreover, research shows that 88% of restaurants plan to ditch paper menus and switch to contactless menus. 

Unsurprisingly, many restaurants will start or continue using QR code restaurant menus in their operations as automation in restaurants is expected to kick off.

However, aside from restaurant automation, contactless menus help restaurants operate with fewer staff, provide a well-designed and up-to-date menu, and act as a marketing tool for restaurants.

On the other hand, customers can create digital orders through a menu QR code without a restaurant staff member’s assistance.

Going digital with your restaurant menu is, to be honest, slightly confusing and overwhelming, especially if you’re a nontechie. 

So, we made this easy-to-follow guide on how to make contactless menu for your restaurant.

What is a contactless menu for a restaurant?

A contactless menu is in a digital form where guests will scan a QR code using a mobile device to access the restaurant’s menu.menu tiger contactless menu table tent qr codeUsing a QR code generator or an interactive QR code menu software, you can make a contactless menu that customers can view or order without a staff member’s assistance.

After making your contactless menu, you can convert it into a QR code that your guests can scan to order. 

Read more: Contactless menu: A thriving medium in 2022

Ways on how to make a contactless menu

There are two contactless menus: a view-only menu and an interactive menu.

1. PDF QR code menu

The view-only menu can be a PDF menu that is converted into a PDF QR code menu using a QR code generator. 

2. JPEG QR code menu

The other one is the Jpeg menu QR code, where a Jpeg-formatted menu is turned into a Jpeg QR code with the help of an online QR code generator.

3. Interactive menu app with QR code

On the other hand, the interactive menu is a QR code digital menu that allows customers to place in-app orders. Customers scan, browse, and order through their phones using the QR menu.

How does a contactless interactive menu with QR code ordering work?

Unlike view-only menus, guests can order and pay by themselves using an interactive menu. 

They can scan a restaurant’s QR code menu, redirecting them to the restaurant’s online menu. On the online page, they will find the restaurant’s digital menu containing food items they can add to their cart, place an order, pay, and tip.menu tiger mobile paymentWith payment integrations from mobile wallets like Google Pay, Apple Pay, Stripe, and PayPal, customers can pay online through the interactive menu using their phones. 

MENU TIGER, an interactive menu software, even allows customers to include a tip along with their payment, which they can pay using the menu’s mobile payment integration.


Tips on making the best QR code menu for restaurants

Big restaurants hire menu engineers to create their menus and digital menus. But if you plan on doing it on your own, here are some tips on how you can create a QR code menu for your restaurants.

Use the right colors

When designing a quality menu for your business, colors are crucial. You can pique your consumers’ appetites and cravings by using the right color scheme and palette.

Make sure to use the right color palettes in your restaurant to influence the interests and preferences of your patrons. In this post, you will learn about different color schemes that are adaptable and appropriate for your restaurant business.

There is a reason restaurants and big fast-food chain brands like McDonald’s and Chick-fil-A use the colors red and yellow. 

  • Red and yellow

Red is a warm color correlated with excitement. On the other hand, yellow is a happy and energizing color. Both colors increase the body’s metabolic activity and induce hunger in customers, prompting customers to order more.

  • Green and brown

If your restaurant provides fresh, healthy, organic, or vegan ingredients, you can use the color green. Brown is a natural and earthy color, primarily used in cafes and coffee shops as it embodies the perception of the delicious aroma of chocolate and coffee products. 

  • Purple

Purple is associated with royalty and wisdom because of its historical background. They are least likely to be used in branding and logos. Wonka and Cadbury are two notable chocolate brands that use the color purple as packaging.

  • Blue

Minimize or avoid using blue as it is an appetite-reducing color. However, it doesn’t mean you can’t use it. Some cafes and restaurants use it to promote calmness and serenity. 

  • Gray and white

Finally, gray and white colors do not stimulate hunger or desire. Restaurants and other F&B businesses like cafes use them as accents or base colors.

Using the right colors to express your message the right way to your customers in your restaurant interior or for your electronic restaurant menu is a small but important detail in your restaurant business marketing.

Add appetizing images

Ordering from a menu without food images may feel like ordering a surprise item, especially for first-time diners in your restaurant.

Food images are as important as taste. Your restaurant customers eat with their eyes first, so make sure to add delicious-looking and mouth-watering images of your food items.

You can hire professionals like food photographers and food stylists to show off your menu items at their best. However, you can always use high-quality stock images if you want a cheaper option. But make sure that your food items look as close as possible to your virtual menu app food images.

Read more: How to creatively design your menu app

Create food item descriptions

If customers eat with their eyes first using food images, food item descriptions allow them to taste and feel the texture of a food item. Certain words used in food descriptions trigger hunger in our brains.

Research found that words like ‘tender,’ ‘fresh,’ and ‘spicy’ make customers’ mouths water. On the other hand, ‘fragrant,’ ‘whipped,’ ‘tangy,’ and ‘stew’ tend to put off customers. 

In creating food descriptions, the length and choice of words matter. Longer food names and food descriptions are more favorable. Customers tend to get the impression of getting a bargain and getting more value for their money when descriptions are longer.

Use adjectives, geographic/cultural terms, nostalgic terms, and ingredients or cooking methods in your food description. 

So, for example, instead of just saying ‘Beef Taco,’ try this:

‘Mexican home-style beef taco made with tender hand-pulled beef strips in a crunchy taco shell with fresh and crisp shredded lettuce, diced tomato, green bell pepper, and onion, topped with shredded cheddar cheese.’

Additionally, to cater to environmentally conscious customers, use words like “seasonal,” “free-range,” or “locally sourced.” 

Read more: How to write menu descriptions on your digital menu

Add special item labels

One of the advantages of using a digital menu app for restaurants over paper menus is adding menu item labels. These labels are a good marketing strategy that helps customers look for the restaurant’s new and best-selling food items.

When restaurants label menu items, it increases their visibility, making customers 5x more likely to choose the labeled item.

Organize your interactive menu

Section and organize your interactive menu by creating food categories for your food list and modifier groups for your choices and add-ons.

An organized contactless menu allows easy navigation for your customers, enabling them to browse, choose, and place their orders faster. 

Hence, online ordering lets you fulfill customers’ orders faster and promotes quicker table turnover compared to using the paper menu.

Choose an interactive restaurant menu QR software

Create your contactless menu with an interactive restaurant menu QR code software—MENU TIGER— a multi-feature online menu software that allows you to easily create a no-code website with a built-in interactive digital menu and online ordering system.menu tiger table tent qr code Customers can scan your customized QR code and easily browse and search for food items from your menu. MENU TIGER allows customers to customize their orders before placing them in their cart and checking out.

Enable MENU TIGER mobile payment options like PayPal, Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Stripe payment integration for customers wanting to pay through their phones.

Related: 8 Best QR-Code Contactless Digital Menus for Restaurants


A step-by-step guide: How to make a contactless menu with QR code ordering in MENU TIGER

1. Go to the MENU TIGER website and sign in or sign up

menu tiger sign in sign up
Open MENU TIGER and create an account, sign in using your email and password, or sign in with your Google account. 

2. Set up your stores

menu tiger stores
On the admin dashboard, click Stores and then click New. Then add your store details like name, address, and phone number.

3. Add tables and customize the QR code menu

menu tiger add table
Still, in the Store Details panel, input the number of tables or dining areas in your restaurant that needs a QR menu. Click the plus (+) sign to increase, or click the minus (-) sign to decrease the number of tables. 

Customizing a QR code menu

Beside the no. of tables, click Customize your QR code, add your restaurant logo in PNG and JPG, choose a data and eye pattern, and set the colors. You can choose between a single-colored QR code pattern or a two-color gradient.menu tiger qr code customizationWhen you check the Enable box, you can create a two-color QR code eye; otherwise, the QR code eye will follow the QR code pattern color. Then, select the background for your QR code data.

Tip: Always choose a background lighter than your QR code pattern.

Then, add a frame, select the color of the QR code frame, and add a call to action text like “Scan to order,” “Scan Menu,” “Scan menu here,” etc. 

Learn more: How to customize a menu QR code: a step-by-step guide

4. Assign Users and Admins

menu tiger add users adminsAssign users and admins to the Users section found on the Store Details. An assigned user and an admin have different access and restrictions. A User can only view and manage orders in the dashboard, while an Admin can access all sections on the admin dashboard except the Add-ons and Websites section.

Users and admins can access, fulfill orders, and configure their MENU TIGER dashboard and online menu from any device like a tablet, iPad, smartphone, or laptop.

5. Create modifier groups and food categories 

To create a modifier and a modifier group, go to Menu and click Modifiers. Then, click Add and name your modifier group.menu tiger modifier groupBefore saving, add your choices and add-ons to your modifier group. Click Add, input the name of the modifier categorized under the modifier group, and add the price per gram, ounce, milliliter, or liter.

Finalize and click Save.

To create a food category, go to Menu and click Foods. Besides the Categories, click New and select the store in which the food category will be shown, name your food category, and add a modifier group. If you’re done, click Add.

Related: Adding choices and add-ons to your online menu using MENU TIGER

6. Add food items 

On the Menu, go back to the Foods section and click the food category you want to add food items to. Then, click New and add the food item details. Select the store, add a food item name, and create a food item description. Next, input the price, serving size, and unit. Include ingredient warnings for customers with allergies, health-specific diets, or food restrictions.

menu tiger add food item

Choose a modifier group with choices and add-ons related to your food item, and include the food preparation time. Tick the Featured, Availability, or Mark as Sold Out boxes if it applies to the food item. Here’s what each box means:

Featured – Checking this box will make a food item visible on your restaurant website under the Featured section.

Availability – When checked, this box will show a food item on your menu. When unchecked, however, the food item will not appear on your menu but will stay on your food list without being deleted. 

Uncheck this box when you want to remove or archive a food item for a while.

Mark as Sold Out – Check this box when an item is sold out, but you don’t want to delete or remove it from the menu.

Additionally, select and add labels like ‘New’ and ‘Bestseller’ to your food items, if applicable, to attract customers’ attention.

Finally, you can add high-quality images in JPG and PNG with a preferred image size of 400×300 pixels.

Choose related food items from your food list and choose Recommend.

Finalize your configurations and click Save.

7. Build your online website

menu tiger create websiteClick the Websites section on the admin panel and choose GeneralOn the General Website Settings, input your restaurant name, address, and contact details like email and phone number. You can also add different languages to localize your website and digital menu or change your menu’s currency. Lastly, click Save.

Setup Home Page sections

Firstly, configure your website home page and start by adding a hero section. This section is the banner at the top of your restaurant website. If you’re done, click Save.

Click the Hero section, slide the top right button to enable, and add a heading and paragraph.

Tip: You can add your restaurant’s mission and goals or your brand’s catchphrase or slogan in the hero section.

Secondly, slide the enable button beside the About Section and add a photo to this section. Then, edit the heading and paragraph. Click Save.

Tip: Your About section may contain your brand’s story and roots. You can include the history or idea behind your restaurant’s concept.

Thirdly, enable Most Popular Foods Sections, change the heading and paragraph, then Save.

Tip: You can get creative and use phrases like ‘Chef’s Choice’ or ‘Top Picks for July/July Best Sellers’ or ‘Signature Steaks’ as your Most Popular Foods Section heading.

Finally, set up your Why Choose Us Section, slide the enable button, add a section photo, and create a heading and a paragraph.  

Tip: Why Choose Us section is where you present your brand’s strength and uniqueness. You can share that your ingredients are locally-sourced and organic, or that a portion of your sales goes to your chosen charity, or that your restaurant has been the first and original home of fried chicken since 1950 in the area.

Configure website appearance

Change the font of your website’s Hero, About, Most Popular Foods, Why Choose Us, and Contact Us Section. Even fonts for the Modals, Food Card, Navigation and Category Bar, Log in, Register, and Reset Password Pages are all changeable.

Then choose and change the background, primary, and secondary text colors. Also, select and replace your website’s primary button color, text button colors, and navigation bar colors.

Tip: Use a color scheme according to your brand colors or to the message and vibe you want your customers to realize. 

Learn more: How to create a no-code restaurant website with a built-in ordering page

Creating a scheduled promotion

Schedule and create promotional discount banners for different occasions on your website that would automatically go on and off at specified times and dates. 

Click Promotions and create a name, description, and add your promotion name, description, and image. Schedule a stop and start displaying the date and time, add discounts, and choose menu items with promotions. When you’re done, click Create.

Read more: MENU TIGER: How to set up promotions using a menu QR code software

Creating a customer survey

To get feedback, create a survey on the Feedback section of your restaurant website that your customers can answer.

Click Add, create a survey name, then click Add. Then, make a welcome note, add your first question, and specify the response method (text box, star rating, yes or no, and smiley).

8. Enable payment integrations

menu tiger payment integration
Go to add-ons, select Payments, then enable Cash, Stripe, and PayPal payment integration by sliding the enable button. Then, click Setup and log in to your mobile wallet account.  

9. Check your website

menu tiger check website
Finalize your restaurant website, interactive restaurant menu, and QR code menu. View your website and menu on your customer app by clicking the view button on the upper right hand. 

Make your interactive contactless menu today with MENU TIGER

Recently, we’ve seen developments in QR code functions from packaging to restaurant menus.

QR code in the F&B industry is mainly for digital menus, either view-only or interactive menus. The interactive digital menu enables contactless ordering and paying more convenient. 

Customers scan the QR code menu, browse, choose, and customize their orders, place orders, pay, and include a tip using mobile payment integrations from their menu.

In creating the best digital menu for your restaurant, it is important to organize your menu, choose the right colors, add appetizing images and special food item labels, create a unique menu item description, and choose the best QR code contactless menu.

MENU TIGER interactive restaurant menu QR code software allows restaurant users to create a no-code website with a built-in interactive digital menu and online ordering page. 

Create a restaurant website with a non-commissioned interactive digital menu. No credit card is needed when you sign up for MENU TIGER today and get 14 days free!