Thinking Outside the Box: Things To Consider When Starting A Food Truck

Photo of a blue burger food truck with neon lights parked under a streetlamp in a parking lot

Whether you’re an entrepreneur looking to open your first business, or a restaurant owner looking to expand, there are lots of things you need to consider before starting your first food truck business.

You’ve probably done lots of thinking and dreaming about what your food truck will look like and what kind of food you’ll serve, but there might be other things you haven’t thought through or planned out. Check out the questions we have below, and they might make you think a little differently about your future food truck.

3. Should I Relocate For A Food Truck Business?

Does your area get lots of foot traffic? Is the weather consistently good enough for outdoor dining? If you live in a tough location for food trucks, you might consider relocating to get easier business. 

Relocating could be something as simple as moving over one city or something more extreme like moving halfway across the country. The key is figuring out where your food truck business will thrive.

However, if your location isn’t perfect, that doesn’t mean you can’t start your food truck there. It just means that you might have to put in a little more effort to find local spots with more potential customers, or that you might have to change up your business strategy in the winter.

Some things to think about:

  • What kind of food am I selling and where will it be popular?
  • Do I want to operate somewhere that food trucks are more common? Or do I want to be the new, unique venue no one has tried before?
  • Do I want to keep my business open year-round or close for the off-season?
  • Do I want to stay in a place that’s familiar or challenge myself with new surroundings?
  • Can I put in the extra work to make my truck successful during the winter months?

There are so many things to think about when debating whether you need to move to see success in the food truck industry. Everyone’s journey is different. 

There are food trucks in every state from Indiana to California, and even up to Alaska! Where do you see your food truck business succeeding?

2. Weekly Locations Or A Catering Machine?

Are you going to run your food truck from a few select locations where you park daily and do business, or do you plan on only using your truck as a catering service?

Spoiler alert: You can do both, and many food truck owners do.

Why did you plan on opening a food truck in the first place? Did you want to try something new and become a small business owner? To spread brand awareness for your existing restaurant locations? To make catering easier? So you could travel to food truck events and treat your truck as a special event vehicle?

You may need to ask yourself these and other questions before you decide whether your truck is going to be solely for catering specific booked events, or whether you will park and sell. In the end, you may find yourself wanting to do both to get your truck as much business as you possibly can.

1. Stick With What Works Or Create A New Brand?

This is something to ask yourself if you already own an existing restaurant, and getting a food truck will be a second location for you. Should you stick with the same menu and food concept or create something completely new?

This might be the most out-of-the-box idea to consider of the ones we’ve discussed in this post. Many restaurant owners would only even consider using their food truck as an extension of their current locations. After all, using an existing menu, or a scaled back version of an existing menu, may seem like the easiest way to go. If you already have the menu put together and people love your food, why not?

But what if your menu won’t translate easily to a mobile format? You may want to try a new spin on your current options that would be easier to serve in a mobile kitchen context. Or you could create a new brand and sell completely different food at your mobile kitchen. The great thing about food trucks is that they are always evolving and adding new options to their menus. You can get as creative as you want, whatever you decide.

What Will You Decide for Your Food Truck Business?

Whatever you decide, make sure that you do what’s best for your food truck business. Whether you stick with the familiar or try something completely new, you can do what it takes to make your truck the best it can be.

Want more food truck advice? Check out more blog posts here!

Thinking about starting a food truck? Request a free custom quote and one of our food truck specialists will help you design the truck of your dreams.

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