If you go to a food truck that is really doing well, you’ll find a menu design with limited offerings. It may change daily but each day’s offerings will be minimal. Large, corporate restaurant chains can afford to have ten page menus. Their finances and budgets are handled differently and, because they are working to please a wide variety of palates from across the nation, they have a different way of doing things.
If you have a food truck and you are trying to compete with a corporate chain you need to stop. A food truck’s menu design needs to stay limited in size to control your profit margin and the quality of your dishes. Here are some ways to develop the best menu design possible while keeping it limited.
How To Keep Your Food Truck Menu Design Limited
Talk to Your Staff
Food truck owners get in the habit of being the boss. Sometimes this means that they ignore one of the best feedback resources they have, their staff.
Not only has your staff been trained but they are passionate about food. They know their strengths, weaknesses, and interests are. If they aren’t sharing that information with you you are not making the profit you could be. A food truck staff that has the freedom to create, and who know their ideas are valued, is more likely to bring their passion and creativity to the job. Ultimately that means higher profits.
Ask your staff what they doesn’t do well, and what they would change about your menu. Take notes and consider what they say. If they are passionate about Mexican cuisine and you have them cooking nothing but burgers you have a problem. You need to either come up with a menu that you’re both excited about or you need to consider hiring new staff members.
Talk to Your Customers
What are your food truck customers buying? What do they like? You can’t base your menu totally on what your customers say but when you compare their answers to the notes you took when you talked with your staff you should be able to get a good idea of what consumers are looking for.
Concentrate on Being Memorable
Concentrate on creating memorable dishes around your concept and common ingredients. Focus on creating the perfect plate rather than adding more menu items. Your customers will be able to recommend your truck easier because they can repeat the name of a dish or two that they love rather than having to say that you do OK food.
A Limited Menu Means a Happy Food Truck Kitchen
Finally, limiting your food truck menu will take a lot off pressure off of your staff. Your staff will be able to prepare your dishes more efficiently and your window service staff will have fewer problems answering questions. Having a limited menu may be the one thing that turns your mobile food business around.
RELATED: Food Truck Menus: An In-depth Look
The Bottom Line
Trying to please everyone with a complicated menu design leaves your food truck unable to be defined. When you have menu items that represent too many styles of cuisine, your customers will find it hard to describe and recommend you. You find it harder to manage your mobile food business effectively and market your brand. You’re trying to stand for too many things at once. Cut out all the extras and limit your food truck menu design.