Covid-19 has changed the dynamics of the global marketplace.
Even in countries where pandemic-related restrictions have relaxed, governments encourage businesses to adopt social distancing measures.
The pandemic has not only brought about a change in the rules and regulations of running businesses but has also impacted consumer behaviour. Customers want all processes to be contactless.
With regard to the hospitality sector, consumers expect businesses to keep customer experience as frictionless as possible – right from the point of placing the order to making the payment.
The post-pandemic period saw an unprecedented rise in the use of QR codes – a type of barcode that had largely been ignored or avoided till now.
What is a QR Code?
QR in the term ‘QR code’ stands for ‘Quick Response’. The technology was first used at a car factory named Denso Wave in Japan. This factory was a subsidiary of the automobile company, Toyota. The purpose of QR codes was to track components of automobiles on the production line at an increased speed. However, QR codes only gained mainstream popularity in the wake of Covid-19.
Although a QR code is a type of a barcode, it is distinct from a typical barcode in a number of ways.
The key differences between a QR code and an average barcode are listed below:
- QR codes are 2-dimensional codes while most barcodes are 1-dimensional. A QR code contains information in both vertical and horizontal directions while a barcode stores data in only a horizontal direction.
- QR codes can store more information than a normal barcode due to its 2-dimensional structure. QR codes can store a huge amount data – usually over 2,000 characters. In contrast, a 1-dimensional barcode can only store 20 characters.
- QR codes can store different types of data including URLs, geographical information, text and contact details. On the other hand, a normal barcode can only store a string of numbers or digits.
- QR codes can be scanned from both paper and digital screens. Barcodes cannot be read from digital screens.
- A QR code can be read by a scanner even if it is partly damaged. It has an error-rate of 7-30%.
- Unlike barcodes, all information transferred via QR codes is encrypted. This means customers’ information is not stored on the merchant’s file or record – which eliminates the risk of data breach or hacker attacks.
How Are QR Codes Used In Order & Pay Apps?
Order and pay apps for restaurants allow guests to scan the merchant’s unique QR code on their mobile phones and access the restaurant’s digital menu. Guests do not need to download any app.
This digital menu is usually on the restaurant’s webpage or app. Once the guest has accessed the merchant’s app or webpage, they can order food and make the payment online by entering their card details on the ecommerce portal; payment may also be made via a card machine used by the restaurant.
QR Codes can also be used for payments. However, most mobile wallets in the UK do not have the capacity to process payments by QR Codes. The majority of mobile wallets in the UK process payments through NFC technology which is supported by all latest SMART terminals. Examples include Apple Pay and Google Pay.
In short, QR codes are a popular means of placing online orders in the UK although they are yet to gain recognition as a method for taking contactless payments.
While QR code payments are still gaining traction in the UK, they have been a popular method of payment in China since decades.
How Can CutPay’s Touchless Order & Pay App Help Restaurants?
CutPay’s unique offering Touchless Order & Pay allows hospitality businesses to take table orders via QR codes.
Guests can scan the restaurant’s unique QR code on their mobile phone to access the restaurant’s website, app or digital menu. Once they have accessed the menu, the customers can place their order.
Touchless Order & Pay allows payments to be made in two ways: guests can pay online via the restaurant’s e-commerce website or app. Or they can opt to pay via the latest SMART terminal supplied to the restaurant by CutPay.
How Can Restaurants Display Their QR Code to Customers?
A restaurant should display the QR code wherever the guest is likely to be present on the premises. The QR code can be displayed at the table or in the parking lot where customers are expected to scan it on their mobile phones, place their online order and make payment.
It can also be displayed at the POS till allowing customers to scan the QR code on their mobile phones and place their order online without the need to stand in a queue.
What Is The Benefit Of QR Codes In Touchless Order & Pay?
Allowing guests to scan QR codes on their smartphones and place their orders online has a plethora of advantages for the restaurant as well as other stakeholders. Some of these benefits are listed below:
- Reduced queues: Since guests can place their orders from the comfort of their tables, members of the waiting staff no longer need to tend to customers waiting in long queues. They can focus on delivering orders and enhancing customer experience.
- Faster table turnover: With guests having the autonomy to order food and pay for it online, they are more likely to vacate their tables sooner rather than later. This allows for a table to be available when the next guest enters the restaurant. Therefore, there is faster table turnover and more money is earned for the business.
- Staff time dedicated to customer experience: Besides eliminating the need for staff members to assist customers standing in queues, the QR code process significantly reduces instances of the checkout process. Many guests would be able to pay online via the app. A member of the waiting staff does not need to fetch the bill and collect payment. They can focus on making the overall experience for customers a memorable one.
Touchless Order & Pay Offers Much More!
Touchless Order & Pay offers hospitality businesses a host of other benefits including online ordering for deliveries and takeaways, table reservation, free Google and Apple apps, etc.
To find out more about Touchless Order and Pay, please email us at email@example.com or call us at 0191 500 6575.