You know the food truck craze that’s sweeping the nation? You can get in on it too, with this definitive guide on how to start a food truck business. With over 70,000 food trucks in operation today and only about 200 new licenses issued each year, it’s clear that the market for this type of business is highly competitive, but there are still plenty of good opportunities out there if you know where to look and how to execute your plan effectively. Here’s everything you need to get started!
Starting up Food Truck Business
Food trucks are the perfect small business if you’re starting out because they don’t require the same level of start-up capital as other establishments.
Of course, there are many more costs that go into owning and operating a food truck, but many of these can be covered in creative ways.
Like any other business, being creative with how you start your food truck can also lead to innovative products or ideas that differentiate your business from others.
All it takes is some research and innovation! Find new recipes, ingredients, and dishes that might not have been tried before.
Create your own menu by experimenting with unique flavors and different types of cuisines. Be sure to take advantage of local markets for fresh produce and meat at reasonable prices so you can keep overhead low while still providing high quality ingredients for your customers.
Day-to-day operations in Food Truck Business
– You need to make sure you get your permit, insurance, and license before you set up the truck
– Make sure you have all of the necessary items for operating your food truck before you start the business (plates, cutlery, condiments) -Don’t forget about marketing! Plan ahead for where and when you will be promoting your product.
Think about social media and online advertising. Don’t put all of your eggs in one basket with just word-of-mouth or brochures in storefronts. It can take up a lot of time and may not be enough exposure on its own.
Maybe consider providing discounts on things like Yelp or Groupon. There are so many creative ways to promote your business that are more cost effective than spending tons of money on print ads.
Take advantage of digital marketing as well. Hosting contests on Facebook or giving away freebies could also help boost sales and create interest from customers. There are so many opportunities for marketing out there, you just need to explore them!
Growing your business
Looking for ways to increase your reach and exposure? Food trucks are often at the forefront of pop culture—especially in urban environments. So, it might be time to add wheels to your business! But, before you get too excited, read these seven steps before jumping into the deep end:
1. Do Your Research ~~ Be sure that you know what you’re getting into with starting a food truck business. Look up blogs and reviews from people who have already started their own food truck businesses and learned from their experiences—you’ll save yourself from making some of the same mistakes.
Read up on competitors’ menus, location strategies, and marketing tactics. The more research you do, the better prepared you will be when deciding if this is the right move for your company.
2. Location ~~ You need to make sure that there is enough foot traffic so that potential customers can find your food truck easily when they are looking around.
If you’re thinking about opening up a taco truck in downtown San Francisco, then this should be an easy decision! On the other hand, if you live in Montana and want to open a lobster roll stand on Route 93 near Big Sky Resort Ski Area,
then it’s going to take much more effort on your part to drum up business because most people won’t even know where they can find seafood let alone someone selling them without an established restaurant nearby. Make sure you’ve found the perfect spot for your truck before spending any money on equipment or food.
3. Find Employees ~~ Figure out how many employees you’ll need to start off and hire accordingly (maybe offer higher pay rates than traditional restaurants). Consider whether they would work full-time or just during specific hours of operation, as well as how many days per week they would work and whether benefits would be included.
Plus, don’t forget about hiring managers—they’re not just chefs behind a grill anymore! They manage inventory, payroll taxes, maintenance schedules, vendor relationships, compliance requirements such as licenses and permits…the list goes on!
And while they may seem like a luxury at first, having a dedicated manager can really improve employee morale and create a more cohesive team environment overall.
4. Menu Items ~~ Now that you’ve found the perfect spot and hired some help, it’s time to figure out what kind of menu items your food truck will serve.
Think about what flavors are popular in your area or niche market, but also try to use fresh ingredients when possible to differentiate your offerings from those served by others in the area.
It also helps if each dish has an affordable price point so that potential customers can enjoy several items on the menu rather than one expensive entree choice. Finally, be sure to think about which recipes are the most labor intensive, as you’ll need to factor in a budget for your staff and kitchen space.
If you’re still unsure of what type of food truck business to start, consider these three options: a food truck that sells traditional comfort foods such as fried chicken or macaroni and cheese; a specialty food truck that focuses on regional cuisine; or a gourmet food truck that serves high-end dishes at competitive prices.