Wednesday, March 23, 2011

What's Your City Craving?

By: Amanda Rich

In Miami, food trucks are all the rage. We’ve got a truck now for just about everything – burgers, tacos, fried fish sandwiches, grilled cheese, sushi, red velvet cupcakes, pulled pork, brussel sprouts, hand-rolled cigars and now gourmet arepas.

At a recent food truck tweet-up, a friend of mine from New Orleans was telling me it’s not food trucks stealing the spotlight in her city, it’s pop up restaurants. Here today, gone tomorrow, local chefs move around the city and set up shop in temporary locations. Foodies get the 411 from Twitter and reservations are hard to come by. 

So pop up restaurants are to NOLA what food trucks are to MIA. What food trends are taking over the rest of the country? I posed the question to my friends on Facebook and here’s what I learned in a matter of minutes.

In New York City, it’s tea cafes and pie shops. In Portland, it’s mobile food carts.  In Des Moines, it’s barbeque. And in D.C., it’s specialty ice cream, cheese, and liquor shops.
Leave a comment and let us know what food trend is invading your city. 

Friday, March 18, 2011

Online Storefronts Fuel Entrepreneurs

By: Amanda Rich

When driving to pick-up lunch the other day, I heard a commercial on the radio for Chase’s new online storefront feature for its banking customers and thought to myself, ok now this is worthy of a blog post. My ears perked. Online storefronts…from a bank? Now that’s different. Chase always seems to be ahead of the curve though. My bank still doesn’t offer an iPhone app! Hello, Wachovia, are you listening?

When you hear online storefront what do you immediately think of? For me, it’s ebay first and then Etsy. Well, did you know you can create a free online storefront on Facebook? Payvment's Facebook app is an e-commerce platform that gives you everything you need including a full-featured admin area built directly into Facebook to manage your storefront, inventory and sales. Just think of the all the hundreds of millions of customers you’ll be able to reach with a few clicks. Payvment is not the only one. Mashable recently did a story featuring a few similar apps but the rest come with a cost.

As more entrepreneurs start side projects and leave corporate America to turn their passions into profits, I believe we’ll see more of these online storefronts. To be honest, I want to create one right now but not sure what in the world I’d sell. Maybe it will come to me in my sleep.

All businesses need an online presence today but creating a fancy website, especially a fancy e-commerce site, comes with a hefty price tag. Well, where’s the need for one anymore when you have apps like Payvment?