Launch your new restaurant in a food truck business (or cart!)
Here’s one of those mobile business ideas that has so many fun options. Serve your valued customers their favorite items from your food truck business, food cart business, or even a food service trailer (how about a full-blow recreational vehicle).
Take a listen at how there are now over 600 food delivery trucks in Portland . . . :)
. . . I’m very interested in this new industry that’s popping-up all over the country and the ingenuity of folks who use old school buses to fully loaded trailers and recreation vehicles.
And the beauty is you take your food to your customers rather than waiting for them to come to your place of business – outstanding.
You choose the menu for your food truck business based on items you enjoy most – some ideas include a variety of quick foods, coffee, bakery items, breakfast items, lunch cuisine, ice cream/snow cones, artesian crafts, pet treats, etc.
These mobile business ideas can be as elaborate as you choose with a retrofitted truck, recreational vehicle (restaurant on wheels), or just a small vending cart offering a variety of baked goodies or ice cream. The choice is yours based on your interests, ideas, and financial capacity.
Rolling Crepery :)
If you're interested in pursuing a food truck business, read the Gourmet Food Trucks - Redefining Fast Food [Infographic]. I found this fun and helpful in learning more about the food truck industry along with a few marketing tips to consider as you get started.
Personal Niche Ideas:
1) Instead of food, offer creative crafts "on wheels" and link your business to your online artists gallery. You can offer your own or the crafts of others such as oil/water color paintings, sculptures, face paintings, make pet balloons, caricatures, tattoos, homemade pet treats, etc.
2) Create a route where your “rolling restaurant” is located in a different place each day – text your customers daily to let them know where you’ll be located each day (keep their interest as you move throughout the city and offer daily specials if they mention your text).
3) Sports cart – rent games and sports equipment at parks for the day.
4) Have a bike library – check out bikes for local day trips, quick errands, or a lunch time ride.
5) Bake some of your best sweet treats including cupcakes, muffins, pastries.
6) Include some of your wonderful pet bakery goods for your fury friends.
Resources: A good quality truck, cart, or motor home (maybe even a boat for those who live on the water!) that can be efficiently organized for operation during peak times and can be set-up quickly for the upcoming event. You will also need product sources, a commercial kitchen for initial food preparation (if not set-up on the unit itself), an approved location (assigned street corner, local carnivals, and events centers) for selling your products.
Time Required: 5-15 hrs/week; can work full-time 30-40+ hrs/week
Training: Contact other food truck businesses for advice/guidance on what has helped them to be successful, take food preparation classes from a local trade school, restaurant, or hobby store. Work in the food industry to gain valuable experience. Develop good time management skills, be organized, and be willing to work long hours if working local carnivals or sporting events. Determine what the local legal requirements are associated with food preparation/serving and locations allowing street vendor solicitation.
Market: Individuals who live and work in a city center, carnival/event goers.
Home Based: Yes
Location: Local, Regional
Start-Up Costs: $3,000 - $50,000+
Minimizing Start-Up Costs: Find a used food service truck, food service cart, trailer or RV with appliances to meet your requirements – check the internet for possible options. Secure a terrific location (or locations) with a good deal of local foot traffic. Share a commercial kitchen with other businesses to get started and keep your expenses low. Prepare minimal food products initially until you get a good feel for your sales to minimize waste. Track all of your sales to determine what is selling and what isn’t selling – eliminate the items which aren’t selling. Keep your inventory fresh and rotate offerings to keep your customers’ interest. Ensure your products can be available quickly so you can capitalize on peak times when customers are available (long lines discourage people).
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