Eating from a food truck is like putting the icing on the cake, or as is typical food truck fare, a gourmet wagyu beef slider with a side of roasted sweet corn and poblano slaw. The food truck business is thriving because customers love the convenience, affordability and creative menu choices available from food trucks. In this article, we’ll define ways to jumpstart your food truck business to put it on the fast track to growth and profitability. So, let’s get moving!

1. Study your Target Audience

Food Business

As the owner of a food truck business, you recognize that you’ll get the best sales results where and when your customers gather. Consider who your customers are, why they are in certain locations, their age ranges and their interests. Think about food they prefer and how often they visit your food truck. Ask a few questions of customers or put out a survey on social media to determine the foods your customers crave and when and where they want to consume it. The answers to your questions will create your customer profile.

2. Assess Your Competitors

Although your competitors may serve many kinds of food, if they serve food from a truck, they are your competitors. To assess them, track the number of customers they serve, the menu choices offered, and the pricing structure in place. Note when and where the food trucks set up and note if your competitors show up where your truck does. In particular, note how quickly customers are served or if long wait times are common.These food trucks are your direct competitors; know their menus, taste their food, and make note of their prices.

After assessing your competitors, sketch a picture of how your food truck competes overall. Consider ways in which your food offerings are unique: are your flavor profiles off the charts, do you offer return-customer specials, or do you give food truck tours to your favorite fans? List how you offer unique and valuable experiences for your customers.

3. Create Your Business Plan

Nothing will jumpstart your food truck business as well as a clearly-defined food truck business plan. This document serves as a roadmap for your business throughout the startup and growth phases of your food truck business. When complete, it will hold an assessment of your target audience, competitors, funding and financial projections, marketing strategies, and operational plans. Your business plan may also be used to obtain funding from investors, lenders, or banks. Use this business plan for a food truck template if you do not already have a comprehensive plan in place.

Business Plan

4. Activate Your Marketing Strategies

It’s a well-known fact that food truck customers use social media to follow truck locations, check menus, determine which trucks are within reach and trade quips. Use social media as your primary marketing tool because it is the preference of your target audience. To effectively market your food truck and the food experience you offer, you’ll want to capitalize on the minutes you’ll spend engaging with your customers as they stand before your food truck, waiting at the counter or in line for food.

Toss out a free logo cap to someone in line, surprise a guest by adding an extra dessert, or start a name-that-dish contest for your customers. Ensure that return customers are acknowledged and share friendly banter with them. Such customer engagement practices will exponentially jumpstart customer loyalty.

5. Build Your Operational Plan

Although your food truck may be completely outfitted, stocked with equipment and food supplies, build your operational plan to ensure the processes work smoothly in day-to-day operations. For example, define the roles of each staff member and communicate plans for the day, the week ahead, the months ahead, and the years ahead. Review the processes that work and those that need improvement. Ensure your operational plan supports your food truck business; refer to it frequently to obtain the full benefit from it.

6. Make Revisions As Needed

food truck industry

In the fluid food truck industry, you may need to make revisions, including serving locations, menu revisions and pricing. These revisions are notable because they affect your customer base; however, if you sense customers fading away or tiring of your menu, it is time to jumpstart revisions. Move your food truck to follow your target audience and revise your menu, if needed. Switch to popular menu choices, such as barbecue favorites. At the same time, revise your business plan using a template, such as how to start a bbq food truck, to reflect the changes. Adapt and revise your location, menu and pricing as needed.


Starting a food truck business demands creativity and flexibility; however, it is incredibly rewarding to build a food fan base who crave your menu items. Use the suggestions in this article to jumpstart your food truck business and build your food truck empire from there. Best wishes for your success!

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