Food trucks have now become some of the most popular food eateries in some of the country’s largest cities. It’s a great way to start up a small food business without having to purchase real estate. Of course, while it offers a lot of potentials and some great fun, it’s not easy to start up your own food truck business.
If you’re not sure where to begin building your business, here’s a look at some easy steps you can follow to get your food truck business up and running.
9 Steps for Getting Your Food Truck Business Up and Running
1. Get Your License
Unfortunately, you can’t start driving around your food truck and selling food. You’ll need to be licensed first.
Each city is a bit different, but you’ll often need to have parking permits, certificates from the health department, truck permits, and more. Make sure you check with your local city to find out what licenses and permits you’ll need.
2. Purchase a Truck
Of course, you’ll need a truck for your business. Remember that you’ll need special equipment in your truck as well. You can buy from someone else who is moving out of food truck business or you can buy a truck and customize it to your need.
Your truck is going to be one of your biggest investments, so you may want to consider going with a used food truck initially.
3. Come Up with a Food Niche
You can’t sell the same thing everyone else is selling if you want your food truck business to be successful. You’ll need to come up with a niche that’s all your own.
Take time to find out what niches are already covered locally. Then you can come up with a niche that you can fill.
Ask your grandma for her favorite recipes, train yourself and your staff on the cooking, you’ll cook the same things, again and again, so master the style and processes to perfection.
The first impression of your customers will be the lasting impression so get yourself fully ready with the end product, how it will be packaged, the portion size, the serving plate, drinks options, other sides, etc.
4. Look for Financing
Since it takes money to get your business off the ground, you’ll probably need some financing. If you have the money, financing it yourself is a great idea.
Other options are to get a loan from a credit union or bank, borrow from a family member or friend, or you can try to use peer-to-peer lending networks.
You can apply for a personal loan, which has lower prices compared to business loans and borrowing from your credit line. here are some of the best rates for a personal loan that you can get in the market.
5. Create a Business Plan
You’ll need to have a good business plan for your food truck business, just like you would for any other type of business.
When you have your financing, look carefully at the costs for equipment, permits, ingredients, and any other costs. Then you can determine how much you will need to sell monthly in order to bring in a profit.
6. Don’t Forget Insurance
Since your business is on wheels, you’ll need to be insured. It’s a good idea to sit down and actually talk to an insurance agent about your needs.
You could have special equipment and circumstances to take into account when getting insurance for your food truck.
7. Start Connecting
Start making connections that can help you get your business off the ground. It takes more than just heading to a crowded area to grab business from the lunch crowd.
You may also get some business by catering to corporate functions and special events. Making connections in the business and municipal world should be a part of your job.
8. Make Use of Social Media
Believe me, food trucks that are really making money are making the most of the social media, working to generate buzz and connect with customers. Their social media followers know where exactly the food truck is going to be next.
Your truck can have your Facebook, Instagram profile handles painted on all sides for maximum impact.
Update followers of your location with social media or use social media to bring in new customers.
It’s a great way to interact with supporters and customers by asking for suggestions, allowing them to help you come up with new menu items, or asking for suggestions for the next weekly special.
9. Think About Expanding
A business that stops growing is poised for failure. When you build up your food truck brand, consider merchandising. You can also sell promote items like t-shirts on the web and in person.
As you make your brand bigger and more unique, customers will be more likely to help you advertise by wearing your branded merchandise.
Reader, if you are one of the food truck business owners, do let us know your suggestions and share your experience with us.