Custom Pizza POS Menu Screens: Designing with a Blank Canvas

By Jennifer Wiebe

A pizza-specific POS system gives you the ability to design custom order entry screens for your menu, but one size does not fit all pizza menus. In fact, a typical pizza menu with multiple sizes, crusts, sauces, and toppings allows your customers to create literally millions of variations. Software designed specifically for pizza point of sale can handle this level of complexity, and even streamline operations with ordering screens tailored to fit your menu.

A pizza POS menu has to make it easy to enter half-and-half portions (even thirds or quarters) and create-your-own pizzas—accurately and effortlessly; add menu items, extras, and substitutions in any order, so it flows even when customers change their minds; and manage the inventory adjustments, even for dynamically created menu items.

Map it out:

  • Is your menu panel layout intuitive for staff?
  • Is it easy to enter Items?
  • Does the layout allow the user to recover easily from an entry error?

Lay out your menu panels in a way that makes sense to you and your employees. Design your panels so that buttons naturally flow either from left to right or top to bottom in logical groupings, and in alphabetic order or order of popularity.

Group toppings by type—for example, meats with meats, veggies with veggies, etc. Beyond that, make sure the buttons are sub sorted for ease of lookup.

How do your customers typically order menu items?  Try some sample orders like this one:

"Hi this is Speedy Pizza.  What can I get for you?”

“Hi. I'd like one large hand-tossed taco pizza with no olives."

Take a look at how that sentence translates at the POS:

  • one (quantity)
  • large (size)
  • hand-tossed crust (item/modifier)
  • taco (item/modifier) pizza with no olives (recipe edit)

Are your menu buttons laid out so that your hand naturally starts at the top left of the screen and flows to the right and down—hitting each part of the order in logical sequence? Or do you have to skip your hand all over the screen and hunt for buttons to enter this order?

More design considerations:

  • Can employees with bigger hands easily touch the buttons with a high level of accuracy?
  • Is the print on your buttons big enough for everyone to easily read?
  • Are buttons grouped or color coded according to purpose or category? For example, are all your meats one color and your veggies another?
  • Are there too many graphics or buttons on a panel?  Have you considered breaking down items on a panel into separate panels?
  • Would adding a modifier pop-up panel help?
  • Do you sell a number of combo meals?  When a combo has multiple items, it’s a lot easier for employees to be guided through the entry process by the POS rather than having to guess at what a combo might include and end up getting it wrong. Value meal “directed order entry” capabilities speed up service and reduce errors.
  • Have you added “enforced” pop-ups to prevent order entry errors and missed items like salad dressings and dips?
  • Is the ticket window on the menu panel large enough for an employee to review each item before completing the order?

Use these questions to start testing and refining your menu—to speed service on every order. Ask your staff for suggestions, too.

SpeedLine users David and Louise Kenney, owners of Pizza Pirates in southern California, chose the SpeedLine point of sale system to support their rapid growth and expansion. Their focus was on finding a POS system to handle the complexities of create-your-own pizza, coupons, and delivery. “Our favorite feature by far is the menu flexibility,” David says. “Without SpeedLine in place, we’d be in complete shut-down mode.”

Ongoing refinements to the menu have been important at Pizza Pirates, and the POS has been a key factor in achieving the growth they wanted. “I tallied up our total orders the other day,” David adds, “and over the last ten years we have logged in just a hair under two million orders through the SpeedLine system.”

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Posted by Jennifer Wiebe

Occasional contributor of On Point, Jennifer led the marketing for SpeedLine from 2002 to 2018. She loves, books, yoga, playing at the beach, and commenting on bad TV with her family.

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Tags: pizza POS, point of sale

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