5. Find Your Differentiators
The exciting part of starting your own hot dog cart business is in defining your concept and designing your menu. Although you’ll want to stand out, you should keep your menu simple, especially in the beginning. This way, you’ll have more time to prepare your products, less inventory to manage, and less waste of goods that aren’t selling.
Choose the buns and the hot dogs/sausages you’ll sell carefully: they are the foundation of your business and the ones that will make or break your success. Before deciding, you should ask your family and friends to help you with a blind taste test.
Remember, if you want to be the best, you have to sell the best.
Quality is a great differentiator, but so is uniqueness. Since hot dogs are easy to customize, with the right toppings and condiments, finding a combination that’s both delicious and unique to you shouldn’t be difficult. You may also consider offering vegetarian and gluten-free options, to ensure you’re covering as many options as possible.
The bottom line is, the tastier your hot dogs are, the more customers you’ll attract.
Don’t forget to offer drinks and sides as well. Pair your hot dogs with crispy chips, tasty fries and refreshing beverages. Since these products have higher profit margins than hot dogs, find a way to encourage customers to order them, such as daily deals or combos discounts.
Our Final Words of Advice
- Always endeavor to upsell your customers on additional items. If they demand for a hot dog, you can also ask them if they would like a beverage also.
- Maintain a strict standard in personal hygiene. Customers don’t joke with their health and cleanliness is one thing they will watch out for.
- Immediately you have secured a location or geographical area you intend to cover, start spreading the word about your business and a good way to go about this is to hand out some free sample of your hot dogs to key people like managers or foremen and hope that they will inform their staff concerning you.
- You can always use the aroma of your hot dog as a strategy to attract customers to your stand. So ensure that you always have hot dogs cooking and their aroma will grab people’s attention and encourage them to buy.
- Build and maintain good relationship with your customers. Get to know their names and reward the loyal customers with freebies.
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