Help: Installation or Setup

Planning a menu

Instore offers a flexible menu (aka inventory) configuration designed to fit the workflow needs of a variety of businesses. The following explanations will help you create items for sale that are optimized for accurate order taking, inspired upselling, and flawless receipts. Remember that Instore is designed to be flexible, so these suggestions are just a starting point for your store. Also, you can use our Import feature to save time if you have your menu/inventory in digital form.


Instore menus are organized using four building blocks: Items, Categories, Sizes, and Modifiers.


Items are the most fundamental element of your menu and where to start your menu creation. Most Instore sales analytics will be based on Item sales, so it is a good idea to think about what you want to track. Items are grouped into Categories and can be configured in a number of optional ways, including Description, Pricing (3 ways to price), Sizes, Modifiers, Tax Treatment, and Printer Roles. When building an Item, consider how you want it sold by your employees. Does it come in different Sizes? Are there questions that need to be asked (what temperature on that burger?), upsells that can be included (make it a Cadillac for $2?), or just default Modifiers that occasionally get left off (NO tomatoes).


Categories are groupings for the Items you sell in your Instore menu. They are designed to optimize your reporting and quickly help team members find the Item they are looking for at point of sale. Categories are best suited for broad groupings of similar Items, like sandwiches, hair color treatments, catering menus, wines by the glass, or clothing accessories. While a Category can hold unlimited Items, the iPad will display about 8 Items on the screen before you’ll need to scroll to see more.


Sizes are used to set an Item price, track Item cost and inventory, and when applicable attach a barcode to an Item. Organizing your Items with Sizes can be a great way to simplify your menu. Instead of creating three separate Items for a rose, a dozen roses, and two dozen roses, you can create one Item called Roses with three Sizes for that item. This will speed up your point of sale and make your sales reports easier to sort through. Another great use of Sizes is a single Draft Beer item where each Size is a different beer type. This will declutter your menu and speed up order-taking.


Modifiers represent changes a customer may make to to an order. For example, adding gift wrap, including product insurance, swapping whole milk for soy, upselling premium tequila, or pricing in home delivery. Modifiers are organized in groups to allow for quick setup across multiple Items. Modifiers can carry an additional price or be a default for an Item. A default is something that an item normally comes with. For more guidance on using Modifiers, refer to this help article.


Common Menu Structures

The best place to start planning your menu is from your own printed menu or catalog. As mentioned above, you can use our Import feature to save time if you have your menu/inventory in digital form.

  • Are you a bar? Create special Items like Draft Beer, Bottled Beer, or Bourbon, with Sizes serving as the varieties of each, decluttering our menu.
  • Do you offer catering? Creating a special catering Category is helpful with Items based on catering options. This will help to keep catering options outside the main view for regular order taking.
  • Do you organize your salon options by men and women? Then start with two Categories for men and women. Or do you have tiered-pricing? Then create one Item with the different tiers as Sizes, and base your Categories on different treatment or cut options.
  • Are you a retail store? Software options, clothing sizes, and other product options are usually best turned into sizes, as they usually carry different prices. Some adjustments like color, finish, fabric, or material that apply to a broad range of items are often best turned into Modifiers, which can also have unique prices. For example, you may only offer a pine table in two sizes, but you may offer a dark stain finish across all your furniture options.

Spending a little time planning your menu into Items, Categories, Sizes, and Modifiers will make it easier to sell at the store and also track sales cleanly. Our trained business specialists can also help you, just email or schedule a training to get help setting up your menu.