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What is a Contactless Menu?

What is a Contactless Menu

A contactless menu provides your guests with a simple, seamless ordering experience right from their smartphone. As the name states, “contactless” means minimizing the physical touchpoints of paper or plastic menus with an intuitive digital platform. Scanning a table’s QR code places your customized menu directly in your customers’ palm—no apps or logins required.

However, viewing and ordering from a menu is only the start. Implementing a contactless ordering system transforms your menu into an integral part of your service and gives you as a restaurant owner a competitive advantage.

Contactless Menus: Your Service Hub

Contactless menus go beyond facilitating orders by enhancing the overall service experience you offer. Integrations with GoTab’s KDS or your existing POS optimize customer service and bring the kitchen, bar, and other stations table-side. Here’s how a contactless dining experience works:

  • Allow guests to tailor their server interactions, from flagging servers to skipping them altogether.
  • Update menus in real-time for out-of-stock items.
  • Build filters and sorting to cover everything from quick cravings to dietary preferences/restrictions (e.g., “Vegetarian,” “Contains Peanuts”).
  • Enable customers to create, open, share and split their own tabs.
  • Ensure valued employees receive earned praise and help prevent minor mixups from becoming bad Yelp reviews with table-to-staff communication.
  • Leverage logged menu and order data to determine metrics such as sales per hour/shift, top-selling/high margin items, and more.
  • Customize your menu with personalized branding, mouth-watering imagery, and engaging multimedia.
  • Increase sanitation and safety, especially during COVID-19, by minimizing physical touchpoints (e.g., paper or plastic menus, bills, payment cards)

Eliminate Contact Without Sacrificing Connection

Contactless menus don’t eliminate service. Instead, they help you optimize hospitality through a “quality over quantity” approach. Plus, by offering contactless ordering in a restaurant, you can streamline the dining experience for your customers and have all your operations running more efficiently. Rather than periodic check-ins or having to keep an eye on diners, your restaurant staff can focus more on specific customer service moments that make meals memorable.

Freeing up restaurant staff with contactless ordering and menus lets you better position them to create the dining experience you’ve always envisioned for your customers. Perhaps you’d like to welcome guests in a more specific manner, have a mixologist go over cocktails, or have a sommelier ask diners what they think of their pairing.

Contactless menus and advanced restaurant payment technology helps to recover service time, decrease server stress, allow you to target when and how engagement occurs, and let guests decide their preferred experience.

Tailored Server Interaction

Offering tailored server interaction stacks the odds in favor of happy—and repeat—customers. If a diner prefers to limit contact for health, introversion, or any other reason, they can. Do diners love the vibrant personalities of your staff? Contactless ordering and menus don’t deprive them of something that keeps them coming back!

Guests seeking a more classic dining experience with regular table-side appearances can always flag a server to order, reorder, ask questions, hear more about the day’s specials, or get the inside scoop on staff favorites.

Achieving customer satisfaction becomes easier when you remove the guesswork of what your guests expect. A contactless menu tailors server interaction per table to pinpoint precision. 

Your Menu, Your Way

Create, design, and organize your online menu exactly how you want it. Sorting and tag-based filtering keep your contactless menu navigable with your items in their preferred groupings. A MGH survey showed that 77% of pre-COVID-19 diners already checked online menus when choosing where to eat and that difficult navigation contributes to their decision.1 So, meet your customers where they already are—with a seamless menu-viewing experience from their phones. 

The flexibility of contactless menus supports the opportunities you wish to pursue:

  • Daily specials
  • Experimental dishes
  • Holiday menus
  • Ghost kitchens
  • Ecommerce

Even if you just want to try something new and switch up your restaurant menu entirely, contactless menus make it easier than ever. Just remember the rule of thumb: If contactless menus give your diners any problem, it’s making their order decisions more difficult.

Sense of Sight

Dining is sensory. You and your staff have worked hard on delicious food that you can feel proud of. Showcase your dishes with images and media that evoke their rich flavors and smells. A digital menu pairs well with food photography and videos. 

Lower Supply Costs & Shorter To-Do Lists

Physical menu updates cut into your staff’s service and prep time. Reprinting menus adds unnecessary costs. Digitally managing a contactless online menu makes updates easy and eliminates printing hassles. Your bottom line (and the environment) will give their thanks.

Sanitation & Safety

Sanitation is essential to the foodservice industry—critically so during COVID-19. Your customers deserve a safe environment to enjoy your culinary creations. Further, sanitation-linked reputational losses or shutdowns can cause irreparable damage.

Independent of COVID-19’s effects on consumer dining habits, studies estimate that physical menus carry bacteria counts as high as 185,000 per square centimeter.2

While GoTab was founded to improve customer experiences and convenience, contactless menus undoubtedly help your establishment’s cleanliness. By minimizing physical touchpoints, employees remain healthy and guests can safely enjoy your hospitality.

Go Contactless

Contactless menus improve your customers’ dining experience and simplify management. Going contactless enables you to provide and achieve more, from optimal customer service and sanitation to branding to logistics and savings.


  1. MGH. “This Place Looks Good.” Why a restaurant’s website can help make (or break) its sales. https://www.mghus.com/lp/restaurant-survey 
  2. Kaivac, Inc. Beware Germs on the Menu. www.https://www.cmmonline.com/articles/beware-of-germs-on-the-menu/

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