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Selling Your Food Truck Online

Not every food truck owner can be a success. Many mobile food vendors make common mistakes (more), while others run into situations that are completely out of their control.  Whatever the reason you are looking to get rid of your mobile food business, there are certain steps you can take to insure the best price for your vehicle when selling it here on Mobile Cuisine or other sites such as Ebay and Craigslist.

food truck for sale
Image from usedvending.com

Consider these tips when selling your food truck online:

Ensure regular preventative maintenance. It’s no surprise that the better the vehicle condition, the higher the return will get.

Fix up minor problems. Do this so you don’t have to list it as a problem in the vehicle description.

Present your vehicle in its best light. Clean the vehicle (inside the cab as well as the kitchen), take out the trash, and wash it. Don’t forget to take off decals and bumper stickers that aren’t part of the wrap.

Offer the social media accounts. People looking to purchase a food truck are looking to start a business, if the process of selling your truck is to get out; there is no reason to hold onto the old social media accounts on Twitter, Yelp and Facebook. While many food truck buyers may not want to re-use your brand, at least give them the opportunity.

Take a lot of quality photos. Have someone who knows how to take good pictures do so. A good number of quality photos are especially important with older vehicles. How many? 20 to 30, including the exterior, interior, each tire, each seat, all of the kitchen equipment etc. Without good photos, people put in a “risk discount” when they place bids.

The headline and description matter. A lot. Write a detailed headline so people can find the vehicle. Include descriptions such as all-wheel-drive or automatic so it shows up when potential buyers search. The detailed listing should include explanations of all vehicle incidents, scratches, dings, a tear in the seat. Remember that the buyer can’t walk around to look at the vehicles. Also, be honest and detailed. List what has been added, replaced, or repaired.

Consider a low base price. This is a common tactic many online vehicle sellers recommend. Often, a food truck owner wanting $50,000 for their vehicle will set the base at $45,000. A low base price brings bidders in, and they can get competitive.

Include your contact information. There are a lot of unknowns in buying a used food truck, especially online. Having contact information listed in a prominent location allows easy access to the seller, putting at ease any questions the buyer may have.

Be quick to respond. With the rise of mobile technology, what you’ve got now is a customer who’s looking at you on an iPhone, who wants to buy a food truck in the palm of their hand. So answer those questions…and whatever you do, you just have to be fast.

Keep up your reputation as a seller. The same rules apply for selling a food truck online as for selling one in general. Even if a food truck is sold as-is, the seller has to be honest and represent it to the best of his or her ability.

Bonus Tip: While we hate to hearing about anyone that forced to sell their food truck, it does open up the opportunity for another mobile food business to open. If you’ve made up your mind on selling your food truck online, feel free to advertise your food truck here at Mobile Cuisine. We provide you with a trusted site to show off your wheels with a great chance of quickly making a deal.

promote your food truck

To promote your food truck requires a vendor’s personal interaction with potential customers to create interest in your mobile food business. Since “potential customers” include current customers that may become repeat visitors, promotion can happen inside as well as outside of the truck.

Try some of these tactics to promote your food truck business:
Contact local organizations

The first of our tips to promote your food truck is to work with local business organizations. Ask the chamber of commerce or the convention center for a list of contact information for organizations, such as service organizations, unions, political organizations, etc. Call them and tell them about your truck. Offer to cater their meetings and parties at a good discount.

Get access to bulk discounts and deals on your business expenses with a membership to NFIB. Save on services and tools that you use every day!

Make friends with the right people

Try to be on good terms with people who come in contact with tourists or big groups. Examples are hotel staff, concierge services, event coordinators at hotels or convention centers, tour guides, gas station attendants, car rental employees, etc.

Train employees in personal selling

Any employee of your food truck can get involved with personal selling. Train your service window staff members as well as all of your on-board truck staff to engage in personal selling outside of the truck. Provide them with business cards or promotional materials, which they can distribute to prospective customers. This will help boost sales, and it will also increase your employees’ enthusiasm.

Pitch to local companies

You can speak personally with the human resources (HR) managers or appropriate personnel at any companies or factories that are in your local area to see if they are interested in setting up a truck stop on their property or having you cater a meeting or event.

Follow up personally with customers

You can do this both inside and outside of the food truck. After customers finish their meal, it is never a bad idea for the owner or truck manager to speak with them, thanking them and asking if they were satisfied with everything. You can also follow up on customer service issues. For example, if customers fill out a comment card and leave negative comments, you could call them to apologize for their negative experience and offer to make up for it next time by fixing the problem and giving them a discount.

Vend at local events

Personally attend local arts or culinary festivals where you can vend or hand out samples. Talk to the event goers and tell them why they should try out your food truck. Even if you do not create any immediate sales, you will create awareness and get your truck’s name out there.

Be friendly, not pushy

Whenever you are talking to a prospective customer, show excitement about what you have to offer, but be easy-going. If they are not very receptive of your pitch, do not irritate them further.

Use good body language

Any time you are in public, you should represent your mobile food business with your image. One way to do this is to use good body language. Make eye contact, smile and do not cross your arms. If you are talking to someone on the phone, smile while you are doing it, because the smile will come through in your voice.

Get involved with the community

The more activities you are personally involved with, the more people you will meet. Almost every person you meet is a new potential customer. You do not need to turn your whole social life into a sales pitch, but you can make a point of good-naturedly mentioning your food truck to friends and new acquaintances.

Hand out flyers, menus or coupons

The final of our tips to promote your food truck relates to branded collateral. People are more receptive to promotional materials that come directly from a person. Instead of putting flyers and posters on cars or stuffing them in mailboxes, try handing them out in person. As you or your employees hand out pamphlets and coupons, they can make a good impression by using good body language and friendly sales techniques.

How do you promote your food truck? We’d love to hear new tips. You can share them via email, Facebook or Twitter.

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