If you’re considering investing in a food truck, you may want to think twice. Learn why food trucks fail and how a QSR franchise is a smarter investment.
Food Truck Fandom: A Flash in the Pan?
Food trucks have become increasingly popular among Americans in the last decade or so. What was once mostly reserved for rest stops, work sites, and farmer’s markets has exploded into a cultural phenomenon, where guests can experience practically any type of cuisine under the sun as food trucks roll through our neighborhoods.
According to IBISWorld, there are 35,512 food truck businesses operating in the U.S. in 2022, an increase of 13.7% from last year. While a large portion of food trucks are independently owned, many franchises that once operated primarily out of brick-and-mortar locations have gotten in on the trend. Particularly during a pandemic that has limited in-person dining, food truck franchises provide enticing opportunities for business owners to continue delivering their food to people while keeping everyone safe and happy.
By allowing for a more flexible, on-the-move model, food trucks boast the advantage of putting their brands directly in front of more guests at multiple locations, as opposed to relying on return visits at singular locations. To this point, guests may be more likely to frequent a food truck backed by a brand they know and recognize from previous dine-in experiences. However, the trendy curbside appeal of a food truck business doesn’t always outweigh its limitations. With an ever-expanding range of offerings rolling through town, you are taking a risk that your food truck concept will outlast the competition.
The Downsides of Running a Restaurant on Wheels
For all the apparent upsides to owning a food truck business, this concept also plenty of drawbacks. Whether you plan on literally sitting behind the wheel or assigning day-to-day duties to others, the set of responsibilities required to run your food truck are slightly different than they would be in a more traditional quick serve restaurant (QSR) setting.
Many people who open food trucks take on almost all the responsibility by themselves, which can lead to an overloaded owner without the support of a trained and prepared staff to depend upon. Owners need to maintain a presence, but if the business is to really get off the ground, a food truck will need a trusted team to execute the owner’s vision.
Food trucks rely heavily on word of mouth and social media marketing, so if an owner is ignoring the feedback of the guests, bad reviews will travel at lightning speed, beating them to their next location. Another drawback of a food truck is the weather. A week of rain can be catastrophic for a business that relies on outdoor service. People generally don’t like standing around waiting for food while huddled under umbrellas or in frigid winter weather.
While low initial costs may be an appealing draw to opening a food truck business, high or hidden ongoing costs can often be a reason many of these operations fail. Not only are certain costs sometimes underestimated, but for people who have never operated a mobile business, some may be completely overlooked. Parking permits, fuel, and equipment maintenance are just a few of the food truck expenses to consider.
QSR Franchises are Driving Toward Success
The QSR segment has long been at the forefront of American dining, offering guests both dine-in and takeaway options to satisfy their cravings and lifestyles. Franchise owners can command a higher price point than food trucks or drive-thrus, and guests are willing to pay a little more for higher quality ingredients prepared with care.
As diners continue exploring new and different types of cuisines to tantalize their taste buds and feed their families, QSR franchises continue to meet and exceed the demand. We’re not saying that food trucks aren’t without their triumphs, but savvy business owners will understand that as a stand-alone venture, the model is far less sustainable than that of a QSR franchise.
If you are on the fence about whether to pursue a food truck business, it is likely that all the goals you wish to accomplish can be better addressed with a QSR franchise. If you’re looking for a great concept and promising return on investment, look no further than Your Pie, a brand that has always prioritized exceptional flavors, service, and innovation to cement itself as a restaurant of the future.
To learn more about how Your Pie can make your dreams of owning a thriving restaurant business a reality, explore your franchise opportunities today.