Best POS Systems for Food Trucks

Food trucks require a POS that’s just as efficient and portable as your business. Here are the features you need from the best POS systems for food trucks.

Point of Sale
food truck

As a food truck owner, your entire business is on wheels, which requires the support of a POS that’s just as efficient and portable as your business. 

Below we break down features of the best POS systems available for food trucks

Decrease Ordering Friction & Keep The Line Movin’

Food truck staff work at fast paces in small spaces. The best POS systems make ordering and checkout fast for guests and staff alike. 

Mobile POS Mobilizes Staff

Having a mobile versus stationary POS is key to food truck success. Not only does mobile POS have an entirely wireless system so you don’t have to worry about tripping over cords in the kitchen, it also enables you to use POS devices outside your truck. 

Say you want to conquer the line that’s forming fast. You can have 1 staff member collecting orders and payments at the window as always, and another member taking orders outside in line. That way, the chef can get started on assembling plates ASAP, and you don’t have a bunch of hungry toe tappers waiting in line. 

Another pro of the best POS systems being mobile is that they accept a variety of payment methods:

  • Credit and debit cards
  • Contactless payments (RFID cards that you can “tap” on terminals to pay)
  • Digital wallets (Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay)

People are less and less likely to carry around cash or checks these days, and with things like Apple Pay, you don’t even need to bring a wallet! Having an array of payment options available makes it easy and fast for any guest to check out, so you can get started with the next in line. 

Intuitive Ordering Interface

Another feature of the best POS systems that makes your line of hungry guests move faster is an ordering interface that’s easy to use and customizable to your unique offerings. This also makes training any new staff a breeze!

Modifiers are details added to any menu item that guests request to personalize their dish. For a burger order, for example, this could be the specific toppings they’d like, the temperature of the meat, or substituting a gluten free bun. Staff must move quickly when documenting what each guest prefers, and an intuitive interface on POS devices definitely comes in handy. 

Add-ons are items that are automatically rung up following an initial item added to a tab. For example, if guests request their food to-go and you must provide condiments and utensils on the side, versus using the bottles of condiments you have available on the counter of your food truck, you may have to charge a few cents extra. Once to-go is added to a tab, the to-go extras are added along with it, saving everyone involved time. 

Making a dish just right shouldn’t cause a line to lengthen. The best POS systems make this dynamic tab functionality a cinch to use and master.

Offline Mode

You know what would really cause a standstill in your line? If your POS was down without internet connectivity and payments couldn’t go through. 

That’s why the best POS systems for food trucks offer offline mode. Orders can continue to roll in as well as payments, all without WiFi or a cellular connection. Once power is back or you return within cellular range, all of the sales data syncs up once again. That means no loss of sales or data, and no guest is left unsatisfied!

After all, when you’re traveling in a food truck, you never know what the internet situation is going to be. Offline mode is helpful for both the unpredictability of storms and parking locations.

Diversify Revenue Streams With Contactless Ordering

The best POS systems put ordering power in guests’ hands by offering a variety of contactless payment options

Sell Merch & To-Go Food With An Online Storefront

There’s a reason Bezos is the richest guy in the world: Shopping on Amazon is incredibly convenient, and these days especially, people prefer to operate from the comfort of their homes whenever they can. 

While offering delivery may not be in your food truck’s wheelhouse, an online storefront is a great place to allow guests to order food for pickup or purchase merchandise to be mailed to them. It also presents an opportunity for you to promote special releases or events coming up. Heck, maybe you can get people up off the couch after all!

The best POS systems not only provide the ability to host an online store free of charge, they also help you set up shop. Sometimes cooking expertise doesn’t translate to HTML savviness, and that’s a-ok. 

Customer-Facing Mobile App

Another contactless payment option offered by the best POS systems is a customer-facing app available for download on both iOS and Android. An app like this empowers guests to order and pay from their own smartphones, so they can get in front of the lunch rush or save time as they pass through town. This expedited ordering experience requires no device or card swapping between guests and staff, so all you have to do is make the food and give them a wave when they come to pick it up!

Guests love options, especially if they’re in a rush and have a hankering for their favorite food truck dish. Next time they’ll stop for some small talk and a beer!

QR Code Ordering

You’ve likely seen QR codes pop up in neighborhood restaurants since the start of the pandemic in 2020. This technology turned out to be so efficient for staff and so convenient for guests, that it will stick around for the future, and can even be used for food trucks. 

Depending on where you park, QR codes, supported by the best POS systems, let you flex between service models. Say your truck needs all hands on deck in the kitchen, including the person collecting orders and payments at the window. To continue to have the orders roll in, you can place a scannable QR code on the window instead. 

Guests simply scan it with their smartphone, select what they want, and close out right then and there from their own device. Your POS devices will receive the order in the kitchen in real-time, and you can get started assembling their yummy dish. Now guests can just sit back, relax, and wait until their number is called or a runner comes out with their food!

Besides being a time-saver for guests and an assistant for staff, QR codes have also proven to increase tab size. Which makes sense: The easier it is for a guest to add one more item to their tab, the more likely they will!

Set Up Your Food Truck For Business Growth Opportunities

Another way the best POS systems support food truck businesses is by setting them up for future success with the tools they need to thrive. 

Easily Changeable Menus

Sometimes operating a food truck feels like flying by the seat of your pants. Whether it’s improvising for a sold-out ingredient, or adding a last minute stroke of genius to your menu selection, your food truck menu needs to be just as flexible as you are. 

That’s why the best POS systems provide a digital, easily changeable menu for food trucks. It takes seconds to add or nix menu items, and automatically updates across all staff and consumer devices that are using contactless ordering. Now every guest has the most up to date menu, and there’s no possibility of disappointing them with the news of an item being out of stock after they’ve already placed an order. 

This ensures guest satisfaction and gives you the freedom to be creative with your menu, setting your food truck up for long-term success. 

Multi-Location Support

Your delicious grub is a hot commodity and everyone wants a taste. This could leave you torn on a Saturday morning: Should I park at my usual Saturday lunch spot, or at the farmers market in town?

The best POS systems let you seamlessly do both with multi-location support. You can park at your Saturday spot to satisfy your regulars, and hold a tent at a farmers market at the same exact time to get new business! Again, with handy mobile devices and offline mode to support you, as well as integrated inventory management, serving up food at more than 1 location is easy. Gobble up that well-earned money!

Speaking of inventory management

Integrations That Make Your POS Even Savvier

If you’re not familiar with integrations, they are third-party softwares that specialize in certain business areas. Integrations work with the best POS systems to make your POS even more data rich and efficient! Here are some examples that food trucks love:

  • Inventory management: With the ability to sell from multiple locations at once, as well as from an online store, you need software that accurately tracks inventory depletion from all sites. This way, you can easily tell how much inventory remains in your possession, and plan future production accordingly. This automated flow of data helps you maintain error-free inventory counts and COGS numbers, which is vital to making proactive decisions for the future of your food truck. 
  • Accounting & reporting: You may be a food professional and not exactly a numbers person. Integrations for accounting and reporting helps you contextualize your sales, identify growth opportunities, and know where to change it up. If you come to realize revenue was high last month because of the special boozy beverage you offered, maybe it’s time to make that a year-long offering!

Besides getting a bunch of smart softwares working together to deliver the most robust data, this saves food truck owners a bunch of time that you can instead spend analyzing numbers and determining your next big business move!

Reports You Can Understand

If reporting tools exist, but you don’t know how to glean good information from them, what’s the point? That’s why the best POS systems provide robust reporting tools AND pre-built reports you’re guaranteed to care about. 

Here’s another way mobile POS comes in handy—it’s cloud-based! That means in addition to all tabs syncing across all devices, all of that data automatically syncs to one central reporting hub. With real-time sales information available in a web-based portal, you can check in on your business performance from anywhere at any time. This helps you be proactive about staffing, menus, events, and overall business operations!

A few pre-built reports from the best POS systems include:

  • Hourly total sales: This report totals orders by hour of the day. Over time, you can see when your food truck is the busiest, and plan staffing and inventory on hand accordingly. Plus, this gives you the ability to promote events around your slower times to keep traffic steady. 
  • Employee performance: This report shows total sales by each employee and by product category. If you have a staff member famous for their upselling skills, you may want to make sure they’re manning the POS at peak times on Saturday. 

Now you don’t have to waste frustrated time fiddling in excel. These auto-generated reports from the best POS systems are completely customizable, so you can go as narrow or broad as you’d like. To put it simply, accurate, easy-to-understand reporting sets your food truck up for continued growth. 

Build A Community of Fans 

With the right loyalty program, your business can drive traffic, engage guests, and build a recognizable brand for your food truck! So this isn’t just important to retaining your existing fanbase, it makes that group of people even larger. 

These are some ways to engage this community:

  • Customizable rewards: Loyalty program members can earn points through their purchases, and then redeem those points for extra grub or merchandise. This can be whatever you think your food truck fans will be most excited about—everything is completely personalized!
  • Exclusivity: FOMO is real, and if the push guests need to join your loyalty program is jealousy over a sweet member-only hat, so be it!
  • Easy communication: Do you want your community to join you at an upcoming event? The best POS systems let you easily email members, so you can send your food truck schedule and incentivize attendees with speciality menu items. 
  • Track performance: Since loyalty programs are fully integrated with the best POS systems, it’s simple to identify top performing promotions and most engaged members. Access profiles and membership stats to determine what’s made your program the most successful.

Taylor Swift’s worldwide success isn’t solely because of her brilliant songwriting, it’s also because she’s got a band of loyal Swifties supporting her every move. 

The more people that love your brand, have a community associated with your food truck, and feel like they’re rewarded for supporting you, the better. Word of mouth can spread like wildfire and help grow your business exponentially.

A POS Team That Cares

While POS may just seem like a software for collecting payments, there’s a team of real humans behind every system. The best POS systems ensure that you know this, and make themselves available to celebrate your wins and help when there’s a problem.

Fair, Transparent Pricing

Identifying humility in your POS starts with the pricing model. This is where you can sniff out if a POS system really cares about your food truck’s success, or if they’re just trying to grow their own bottom line. A POS may tout the lowest rates around, and then make up their money by charging bogus monthly fees, such as:

  • Monthly software costs: Like a subscription, some POS charge monthly just to use their system. Thank u, next!
  • Monthly costs per feature: The best POS systems provide tools like an integrated loyalty program, online storefront, and QR code capabilities for free. These are tools your POS should be using to delight you and keep your business, not feed their own revenue streams.
  • Monthly hardware fees: Extra monthly fees based on how many POS devices you use are unreasonable. This limits your multi-location abilities, and therefore limits your revenue potential!
  • Support fees: Everything from onboarding to answering the phone when you have a question should be a given, not another line item on your monthly bill. 

The best POS systems solely charge based on credit card processing fees and are transparent about every fee from the very first demo. Working with a POS company should be a partnership where you trust that they have your best interests in mind! 

7 Days/Week Phone & Email Support

It’s good to have free customer support available 7 days/week. It’s even better if that free support is genuinely helpful and empathic. The best POS systems build their Support Team with hospitality veterans that are committed to solving your problems fast with a smile on their face.

Working with smart tech enthusiasts makes all the difference when you are desperate for a solution on a Saturday night. It only makes you more confident to take risks, and thus reap the rewards. Your food truck is your baby, your pride and joy, and sometimes, a major stressor. The best POS systems are a shoulder to lean on when that happens. 

If you’re on the lookout for the best POS system for your food truck, look no further than Arryved POS. In addition to providing all the free tools you need to be successful, our team is full of people rooting for you and committed to helping you grow! Get a free, customized demo today. 

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