What to know before you start a FOOD TRAILER BUSINESS - 6 part Series
Updated: Dec 3
Fresh Tacos along 21st Street in Los Angeles, Culichi Sushi in suburbs of Apple Valley, or the iconic hot dog on streets of New York, mobile businesses can be seen as a growing industry, and you may find yourself asking, "how profitable are these operations?" "Is this something I can do myself?" "Would people like Grandma's Cookie recipe?"
The answers are not so simple. We can answer yes and no to all three questions above, however the outcome depends on many thoughtful questions and insights on how one may think or approach a mobile business.
Starting a food truck or concession trailer can be a great way to start a business, as it allows for a lower startup cost compared to a traditional brick and mortar, however, before diving into the world of food trailers, it’s important to consider a few key factors that can make or break the success of your business.
We will summarize the most important topics to think about below, before delving into each subject in this 6 part blog series:
WHO IS MY CUSTOMER?
First and foremost, it’s essential to have a clear understanding of your target market.
Who are the people that you plan to sell your food to?
What type of food do they typically enjoy?
What are their age ranges and income levels?
Understanding your target market will help you make important decisions, such as what types of food to serve, where to park your trailer, and how to market your business.
WHO ELSE IS IN THE AREA?
It's important to consider the competition and how you will differentiate your food trailer business from others in the area.
Are there other food trailers or restaurants in the area?
How will your menu and prices compare?
What unique selling points does your business have that will set it apart from the competition?
By understanding your competition, you can make strategic decisions that will help you stand out in the market.
WHAT ARE WE EATING?
Another important consideration is the type of food you plan to serve.
Will you offer a specific cuisine, or will you offer a variety of options?
Are you able to prepare the food in a small kitchen space?
Will you need to hire a chef or kitchen staff?
It’s important to have a solid understanding of the food you plan to serve, as well as the equipment and staff required to prepare it.
NITTY GRITTY PLANNING
In addition to the food itself, it’s also important to consider the logistics of running a food trailer business.
Where will you park your trailer?
Will you need to obtain permits or licenses to operate in certain areas?
How will you handle waste and disposal?
These are all important factors to consider, as they can greatly impact the success of your business.
YOU CAN FIND US...HERE!
Marketing is also a crucial aspect of running a food trailer business.
How will you let people know about your business?
Will you rely on word of mouth, or will you advertise through social media or other channels?
What kind of promotions or discounts will you offer to attract customers?
Having a clear marketing strategy in place will help you reach your target market and increase awareness of your business.
Lastly, its important thing to consider is the financial aspect of your food trailer business.
How much will it cost to start and run your business?
What are your projected revenue and expenses?
How will you handle cash flow?
It is also important to consider the insurance for your business, especially for food trailers. Having a solid financial plan in place will help you make informed decisions and ensure the success of your business.
We know starting a food trailer business can be a great way to enter the food industry, but it’s important to consider a few key factors before diving in. By understanding your target market, the type of food you plan to serve, and the logistics of running a business, as well as having a solid marketing, financial, and competitive strategy in place, you can set your business up for success. It's also important to have a clear understanding of the legal and regulatory requirements for food trailers in your area and to have the right insurance in place.
With the right preparation and planning, a food trailer business can be a fun and rewarding venture. If you want to know a little more, be sure to check out each individual topic in our 7 part blog series.