Food truck concepts are only limited by imagination and budget. There are so many possibilities, how do you know what kind of food truck business to create? Today we’ll discuss ten different aspects of creating a concept to start your food truck empire off on the right foot.
How To Develop A Strong Food Truck Concept
Make Sure Your Food Truck Concept Is Different
If there’re a lot of traditional taco trucks in your area, then maybe you shouldn’t open another one, even if you think your mom’s recipe is the best you’ve ever had. Make sure that your concept will be understood by the average consumer. The food truck industry is competitive enough without you having to go head-to-head with established brands.
One of the keys to a food truck’s success is having a concept that stands out from the crowd.
Don’t Think Too Far Out Of The Box
While your concept needs to be different, don’t create a concept that customers won’t “get.” If your truck is weird or too different, you’ll have to spend too much time educating your customers. Do your research and make sure your menu and concept is easy to understand. When doing this research, remember that the best food truck concepts are variations on a theme; not a totally new theme.
Don’t Over Price Your Menu
Make sure that your concept will allow you to offer menu items at prices that the market will bear. You may have a great idea for a steak and seafood truck, but if you’re planning to open in an area where most customers don’t have a lot to spend at a food truck, you better make sure that customers who can afford your prices will be filling your truck line.
Your food truck concept needs menu prices that fit the demographics of your area.
Don’t Design A Menu Make Your Food Costs Balloon
Big menus with many exotic ingredients don’t pay off unless you’ve found a way to regularly get $100 a head. Smart menu design uses the same ingredients over and over again in clever ways. This allows you to buy food efficiently. A well thought out menu may have chicken breast in one dish, chicken stock in another and gizzards used in a side dish. This strategy ensures that the entire chicken can be used and thus saving you money.
Make Sure Your Concept Will Be Profitable
Some concepts look good on paper, but in reality they can’t make money. Either they take too long to prepare, require too much labor, or cause slow lines at your service window. Make sure that your concept will make money with up to 50% less business and 50% more costs. Never rely on the best case scenario. Make sure your concept is flexible enough so that you can make adjustments.
Good Concepts Are On-Trend
Strong food truck concepts take a current trend like healthy food, the rise in popularity of tea, or the growing love of traditional street food and run with them. They leverage the popularity of a growing trend, not a fad. They deliver solid execution, fair prices, good service and offer menu items in an atmosphere that is current and popular. Remember that you’ll going against the current if you try to be too hard.
Your Concept Has to be Easily Identifiable
If people can’t pronounce or spell the name of your food truck it’s not good. Don’t think it’s uber trendy. If the name is too foreign or the font you choose for your logo is so unusual that it’s hard to read, you’re shooting yourself in the foot. Spend some time to come up with a unique name that is easy to spell and pronounce.
Take Inspiration from Other Sources
There is no shame in borrowing from other food service establishments you’ve seen in your life. Maybe a restaurant in Los Angeles had a dish that was fantastic and inspired you to create a similar one for your truck in North Carolina. Recipes and unpatented ideas are in the public domain and are out there to inspire you.
Make Sure Your Concept Fits Your Area
You may think you have a great idea for a burger truck, but you happen to operate in a coastal region. Consider digging a bit deeper into developing your concept. Instead of just selling burgers and fries, think about adding some seafood on your menu. Construct a concept that includes a menu that highlights a tasty lobster burger?
Make Sure You Love Your Concept
Any successful food truck vendor will tell you that they created their concept revolved around the type of food they love to eat and prepare. If you create a food truck based on the idea that you think it’ll be popular, be careful. With all the time, energy, and money you’ll be putting into your business, make sure you love the idea and are passionate about the menu.
The Bottom Line
A starting a food truck business is a great way to get started in the food service industry. It is relatively low investment, compared to opening a restaurant and it can be just as rewarding. The key your your truck’s success is coming up with a concept that works!