Yes, ice cream trucks can be a profitable business especially when all the factors that support the profitability of a business are right.
The truth is that, in as much as an ice cream truck can be a profitable business when handled by some entrepreneurs does not mean that the business is going to be profitable through and through.
In essence, if someone who is not trained, or has the required business exposure starts an ice cream truck business, the business might struggle.
There are certain boxes that must be ticked if you want to build a profitable ice cream business. In this article, we will discuss the factors that will help you build an ice cream truck business that is profitable.
Is an Ice Cream Truck a Good Idea?
Absolutely, an ice cream truck can be a good idea, especially in cities and states that experience hot weather for the better part of the year, or states that have longer summers.
But, if you live in a city, state, or country that is extremely cold like Iceland or any city that usually experiences sub-zero temperatures in some months of the year, then starting an ice cream truck business might not be a good idea for you. This is so because ice cream trucks do pretty well in cities where there are outdoor activities and clement weather.
The fact that the profitability of an ice cream truck is not guaranteed means that you should do the right thing if indeed you want the ice cream truck business to be profitable. In essence, if you are considering starting an ice cream truck business, there are certain things to put in place to ensure profitability.
8 Things to Do to Build a Profitable Ice Cream Truck Business
Market Research and Feasibility Study
A thorough market research and feasibility study will help you identify areas with high foot traffic, family-friendly neighborhoods, and events where you can park your ice cream truck.
Market research and feasibility study will also help you understand your competition and their offerings, and how you can come up with a strategy that will help you stay competitive.
On a regular basis, you must make sure you create a unique and appealing ice cream menu. You must make sure you offer a variety of ice cream flavors, toppings, and dessert options to cater to different tastes and different customer bases.
For example, you should consider developing ice cream product that takes care of dietary preferences such as offering dairy-free or low-sugar options et al. With that, it will be easier for you to attract more sales and increase the profitability of your ice cream truck business.
Use Quality Ingredients
People will be more than willing to pay a premium to get quality products or services. So, if you want to build a profitable ice cream truck business, then you must use only quality ingredients. In order to ensure consistency in the quality of your ingredients, you should partner with reputable suppliers.
Trust me, if people know that your ice cream truck only uses quality and healthy ingredients, they will always patronize and recommend your ice cream truck.
Your Marketing and Branding Strategy
As simple as it sounds, building a profitable ice cream truck business starts with creating an eye-catching and memorable brand for your ice cream truck. For that reason, you must make sure you invest in branding materials such as a colorful and attractive truck design, a logo, and a social media presence.
Parking Location Strategy
Your location strategy must cover your attendance of local events, fairs, and festivals, and also establish regular routes through neighborhoods or near parks and schools.
As part of your location strategy, you may also want to consider catering to private events like birthday parties and corporate gatherings et al.
With that, it will be easier for you to only go to places where you are certain you will make sales rather than driving aimlessly burning your gas.
Your staff members are your first business ambassadors, and your second ambassadors are your customers. For that reason, you must make sure you build customer loyalty by offering excellent customer service.
You must make sure you train your staff to be friendly and efficient. You may also consider implementing a loyalty program or offering discounts for repeat customers.
In all of this, do not forget to always collect customer feedback so as to make improvements in areas where you need to make improvements.
Offer Discounts and Promotions
The truth is that the average person out there will likely make buying decisions when they notice that there is a promo or discount on a product or service.
You may want to give customized and branded gifts to people who buy your products, or you may want to offer free cups of ice creams or toppings for a period of time, or you may choose to give a 10 percent or even 20 percent discount to a certain category of customers as a way of encouraging them to come back.
Offer Competitive Prices
When you offer competitive prices, you can easily attract customers. The truth is that in business, pricing strategy is one of the options you have to enter the market. Please note that offering a competitive price for your ice cream does not mean your price will be below the average price in your industry or location.
It is important to note that building a profitable ice cream truck business takes time and effort, but by focusing on these key areas discussed above, you can increase your chances of success in a competitive market.