Starting a street food business sounds easy and exciting until we jump into it and start working by ourselves. But, let’s talk about how someone can start a street food business!
Find your niche
if you are looking forward to starting a new business, you have to define your place of business. In this case, you want to go ahead with the street food business, but which audience are you looking forward to targeting, and which cuisine would you serve? Are you looking for a vegetarian food business or a non-vegetarian? Are you going to prepare your raw materials on the spot, or are you going to find a supplier? Settle down on all the points, and then go ahead with your street food business.
Finding the best place
Once you are ready with the business plan and business niche, the next step is to find the location to establish your business. For example, if you are going to sell non-veg items, you would need to find a locality that allows non-veg food stalls. Suppose you want to open a sandwich, pav bhaji, or other general food business. In that case, you can go ahead with putting your stall near any competitor or a city municipality-developed official food stall.
Once place and food are decided, start reaching out to local markets for the utensils, raw material suppliers, stove, and cold storage preparations to make your street food business a reality. Prepare a checklist from the reverse process. i.e., go from tablecloths, plates, hand-held items to serve food, stove/heating machines, mixers, and so on. Try to buy bulk for plastics and plate items that would save you a lot of costs.
Pro tip: Try to find things that look attractive in photos and are available cheaply. This is for all your Instagram influencer audience!
You have to decide if you will be a part of the food and operation team at your business or you are just an investor and would come down to check the accounts only! Get chefs (cooks) onboard and one multitasker who would help him take and pack orders. Initially, a team of two people is good enough to handle any food stall. Once you grow, hire people according to the success of your street food business. There are agencies that help you hire such talent. You can also ask neighboring stall staff to help you find people from their group or community as well.
Documentation and licensing
This is one of the essential things for any business, including your small-scale food stall business. Get all the necessary documents ready and get all the licenses in your hands once you start getting settled in the business. If you are doing your business in such a place where it is not legal to have a food stall or something, avoid it from the inception. If you grow well and then if the time arrives where you might need to shut your business down, it would be a colossal failure.
Integration with food delivery apps
Well, who likes to come down in traffic and have their food on the road. But, you have that audience who wants the taste of your food and are shy or lazy to come down to your stall. Offer them delivery through famous delivery apps. Also, if you have all the documents and licenses ready, it would be easy for you to integrate with such businesses.
Make your food so much presentable that people post its photos on their Snapchats and Instagrams. This would attract more people. Also, if you have a good investment in your hands, try to run Facebook ads to attract locals to your business with coupon codes and particular item photoshoots. No company is small, and if you can win the marketing game, you would win all the wars!
Experimenting with new products
Never stop at the same menu FOREVER! Make sure you offer new trial dishes to your regular customers or unique customers to try. If they pass it with good grades, include them into your menu for the next update of your street food business. It would make sure your customer would not end up going to your competition to try something new, as you are the one who served something new.
Feedback is a must for micro to mega businesses. Get it from your customer and react to it positively.
Do I even have to mention it? Use gloves and headgears all the time. It would prevent false marketing and would also increase trust in your brand.
Get reviews on Facebook and Google Map-like platforms. Local businesses can grow more prominent if they are rated nicely.
you can also check this out Top Food Business Ideas for Budding Entrepreneurs
Scaling your business
Introducing and trying new products might attract many other investors as well. So, just like you are planning to invest or start a new food stall business, there are other people as well who might like to take a franchise or would love to invest in your business directly. Attract them and get the ball rolling!