Surprisingly, after the frustrating experiences many customers are now familiar with while trying to order from a QR code menu, they are become the catalyst for improving customer satisfaction in 2022 and beyond.
Staffing Shortages Push the Industry To Upgrade
As staffing shortages continue to plague the hospitality industry, there has been an uptick in food-service providers turning to digital solutions to maintain operations. A much needed change of pace for an industry that has historically been both high-touch and slow to adopt new technologies. One of the main upgrades that has maintained since the start of the pandemic has been digital menus, with QR code downloads increasing over 750% since February 2020.
The Next Generation of Menus
After the initial QR code menu boom in early 2020, many operators did away with them as quickly as they reasonably could - mostly due to sub-par solutions not optimized for mobile display such as PDFs. As we head into 2022, QR code menus are gaining ground once again in hospitality, but this time they’re equipped with the next generation of menu display: Smart-Menu systems designed specifically for display on a phone, as well as mobile in-venue order and payment experiences.
For hospitality professionals intent on expanding through the current hiring shortage, QR code enabled Smart Menus are providing more dynamic, efficient, and engaging experiences for guests. Between quick and easy custom menu updates, a reduction in printing expenses, and lower exposure risks through contactless menu alternatives, many restaurants and bars are likely to continue their use of smart-menus for the foreseeable future.
Custom Menu Experiences: The Next Instagram?
As the long-term impacts of the pandemic's contactless economy begin to emerge, Smart-Menus are on pace to offer many of the same benefits that have made social media platforms a huge driver of corporate marketing efforts over the last two decades. With more information about guest preferences, and more opportunity for custom dining experiences, QR code Smart-Menus are opening up a whole new level of customer engagement for an industry that has always been fueled by positive customer experiences.
Yet Again, Small Businesses Are Left Behind
While increased safety, experience customization, and expense factors make managing food-service operations easier for the industry, many Smart-Menu systems require significant onboarding commitments and large technical teams to maintain. As a result, smaller operators either can’t or won't participate in the contactless economy without alternatives suited for their needs. In turn, the continued use of mobile delivery displays and PDFs to “entice” guests before and during their dining experience will continue to negatively impact customer satisfaction, without widespread use of systems created specifically for small businesses.
Thanks to the dynamic experiences provided by QR codes, Smart-Menu-enabled operators will continue to thrive in the contactless economy, even as staffing shortages remain. And for small businesses in need of a Smart Menu solution, Foodi Menus is here to bridge the gap between the experience operators can feasibly provide and the experience customers are looking for.