Category Archives: Vending News

Extending the cashable life of your vending machine in 5 easy steps.

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The vending business is a rewarding venture. A major share of the fixed cost goes into buying the machine. There and onwards, the cost is just variable. This means you incur these costs as you make sales. Hence, the recovery of this capital is what defines the breakeven point in a vending business. All the money you make from the machine after your break-even point contributes to your profit. That is why it is important to have a machine that has a long life.

Like all machines with moving parts and user interfaces, vending machines go through wear and tear. If you take good care of your machines, they will keep giving you success and happiness. Yes, we are talking about vending machines, not relationships. Thankfully good machines are designed in such a way that makes their upkeep easy. The key to a long cashable life of a vending machine lies in the following five steps.

1. Preventive Maintenance

Regular maintenance of the machine and its subsystems can help prevent unplanned downtime. Remember, downtime does not only mean spoiled drinks or stale snacks. The true cost of downtime is lost revenue and dissatisfied consumers. Periodic maintenance is not as difficult as it sounds. Some basic checks like cleaning blocks in the cash or coin validators and dusting the air intake can help significantly. The videos below show how you can do them both.

Cash or Coin Validator Check

Dusting the Air Intake

2. Upgrade & Update

Technology in the vending space is growing rapidly. Cashless and contactless payments were cutting edge a few years ago. Today, they are no longer a wow factor. You just need them to stay relevant. The demographics of vending machine users are also changing fast. The millennials do not carry their disposable income in cash or cards. They use mobile payments for transactions.

Touchscreens are quickly replacing push-button keypads, as they give the user a better experience. With fewer mechanical parts, they are also more reliable. The pandemic has also created a need for safe contact surfaces. UV irradiation technology can help alleviate some of those concerns. There are several other retrofit options that you can buy and fit on your machines to make them relevant for the changing dynamics of the market. You do not need to fork out cash to buy a new machine each time. These small upgrades are not only cost-effective they also increase the addressable audience for your machine and make them more profitable.

3. Reliable Parts & Consumables

Machines are designed, tested, and certified for how different components and consumables come together to meet functionality or safety specifications. This makes it important to use the right parts with the necessary certifications. You can avoid unnecessary machine failure or safety incidents by using certified parts. If you consider the cost of Mean-Time-Between-Failures (MTBF), the savings you make from buying spurious parts will seem trivial.

4. Professional Service & Support

Regular maintenance can be done by the machine owner or its operator. You still need to follow the user manuals and service guide for your machine. However, when your machine is in trouble, ask for help. Call the manufacturer or a reliable support partner. The vending machine is an intricate contraption. It is an electro-mechanical device with many auxiliary pieces of technology, like embedded electronics and cloud connectivity. Making a change in one component can and will impact others, too. While DIY is all the rage today, the value of expertise and experience can never be replaced. Your solution provider might still provide guidance on the phone if the issue does not warrant a visit. But that will definitely be much more informed and safer than getting adventurous with a complex piece of equipment.

5. Customer Satisfaction

Technology like Guarantee Vend can ensure that products are either dispensed successfully, or the money is returned, without exception. This makes your machine more reliable and the experience less frustrating for your customers. In return, the customers treat your machine with the courtesy it deserves. 

A stuck product is frustrating for both the user and the machine operator. It not only results in a failed transaction but the machine is also incapacitated. Following simple instructions while stocking the machine can help avoid frequently failed transactions. This video throws some light on best practices to follow while stocking your machines.

6. Sustainable Profitability

The cost of buying a vending machine is the biggest expenditure while you start a vending business. Suppose you are already running a fleet of machines in different locations. In that case, the cost of owning and operating them is quite high. This includes costs like energy consumption, repairs, maintenance, upgrades, and others. Either way, these five steps can help you enjoy sustained profits.

Taking care of your machines is easier with the right solution provider, like Vendnet. Vendnet provides parts and supplies for a wide range of machines and applications. To know how we can help you enjoy sustained profitability, call us at 1-800-833-4411.

The Top 4 Tips for Opening a New Vending Location

What does it take for a vending location to succeed; that is, to create and sustain sales? Having the right location isn’t the only factor, though it does help. Having a terrific product is also helpful, but that alone won’t guarantee growth.  The newest, flashiest machines with the latest technology can also be a draw. Having a dedicated and professional staff for vending machine repair and maintenance is also important. Ultimately, a successful vending location has all these and more. Neglecting even one area may result in failure. Here are our tips, garnered from years of achievement and profit with vending machines.

  • Have a well researched location to meet your needs. Whether your business model is focused on a high traffic area or on repeat business, it’s vital that you know what your business goals are before you select a location, not the other way around.
  • Offer the best product your customers want. This seems somewhat obvious, but there is a subtle difference between the best products your customers want and the best products available. Knowing your consumer base, their spending habits, and their shopping predilections can prevent you from making an inconvenient and costly mistake in stock.
  • Take advantage of technology, not the other way around. From cash-free payment options to wireless enabled stocking and sales stats, the amount of data available to a vending machine operator is greater than any other time in history. Getting bogged down in this much information is a real concern, as is trying to launch fancy technological advances in locations that may not have the right user base.
  • Maintenance saves money. While every item we own may break at some point in its life, the value of preventive vending machine repair and maintenance cannot be overstated here. A broken machine is at best a fancy column to lean on, and at worst can actually cut into your bottom line.

Ultimately, your success, achievements, and profit as a vending machine owner or operator is limited only by the amount of research, diligence, and elbow grease you are willing to put in. That’s part of what makes vending machines such an appealing line of business–the ability to dictate your own business and results.

Future Directions of the Vending Industry

In previous decades, vending machines were on the cutting edge of convenience for on-the-go lifestyles. However, in recent years, the advent of ubiquitous on-demand food delivery services and other trends have outpaced the innovation of the vending industry. Vending machines are also sometimes dogged by their stereotype of housing predominantly unhealthy, sugar-packed candies and snack foods.

To stay ahead of the curve, vending machines are being utilized in new and innovative ways that are in line with emerging healthy living values. Some of the trends vending machines are embracing, or may move toward in the near future, include the following.

  • More Health-Conscious Options. With obesity levels among adults and children alike continuing to rise, the call for convenient and healthy eating choices grows louder. While it is challenging to stock healthier, perishable items like fruits and vegetables in a vending machine, such offerings appeal to the growing number of individuals who are looking to improve their eating habits.
  • Convenient Non-Food Offerings. How many times have you gotten to the gym only to realize you forgot some essential item–headphones, a hair tie, a towel? A vending machine can stock such goods for individual sale, along with other convenient offerings, such as pre- or post-workout shakes and supplements. Possibilities for frequently forgotten but essential items in a variety of settings could be an elusive trend as the vending industry continues to evolve.
  • Machines that Decide for You. Instead of selecting your choice, imagine being able to tell the machine what you are looking for–sweet or salty? A particular calorie range? A set price point?–and then the machine telling you what your best option is. Now THAT is the future!

To stay abreast of current and developing trends in the vending industry, stay in touch with VendNet at our blog and on our social media sites. We are here to meet your vending machine repair and acquisition needs.

The Benefits of Servicing Your Own Vending Machine

New to the vending business? Just like any other machine, vending machines require regular maintenance. While owning a vending machine can be profitable, take your profits to new levels by maintaining your own machine. Some benefits include:

Save money

By learning to troubleshoot and service your own equipment you will be able to save money by bypassing the need to hire a technician. Make sure to place your order vending machine parts with us, we can help get any part you may need.

Save time

We all know hiring a technician can be a costly service, and time consuming. Many technicians will give you a time frame of when they will be at your location, when in reality the service may be less than hour, yet you are waiting for several hours. Save time by servicing your own vending machines.

Help others

There are over 2 million vending machines in the USA alone, chances are you know someone who has a vending machine. Having the knowledge to service a vending machine allows you to offer your technical services to other who have vending machines.

Service School Special

Learn to keep your vending equipment in optimal condition at our 2-day service school in Des Moines, Iowa. Classes cover snack, cold drink, cold and frozen food, and hot beverage machines.

Register at least 3 weeks early and receive a free Bill Validator or Coin Mech REPAIR.

Make your reservation today!

Call 1-888-VENDNET (1-888-836-3638) or Email: ServiceSchool@VendNetUSA.com

Maintaining your Vending Machine: Best Practices

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You’ve managed to secure the perfect spot for your new vending machine and loaded it up with goodies and change. Now you just sit back and wait for profits to roll in, right? Not exactly. The reality is that managing vending machines is an ongoing, if not daily, process. We’ve spoken to industry experts and long time owners about what constitutes the best practices. The following are recommended steps for ongoing vending machine maintenance.  

  • Regularly Scheduled Restocking and Cleaning. It seems obvious that machines need to be supplied in order to sell products, but the reality is deeper than that. Consumers are more likely to patronize a well-stocked machine than one that visually appears to be nearly depleted. Furthermore, those regular stockings are opportunities for quick once-overs for cleanliness and observation of any subtle mechanical issues.
  • Maintenance–Even if No Issue is Apparent. Vending machine repair is a specialty service; however, even if your machine doesn’t display any problems, it may still need annual care to remain in peak functional order. Proactive responsibility can save time and money on future vending machine repair.  
  • Continuous Location Research. Some vending machine owners find a prime site and then never do any follow up on the area. Businesses change, rezoning occurs, and then suddenly their previously successful locality is now a dead zone.
  • Inventory Tracking and Analysis. With the bevy of options to consumers now available, it’s vital that an effective vending machine purveyor stays on top of their own stock trends as well as new items in the field. If you simply restock all the same products, week after week, without examining your sales data, you are neglecting a valuable source of information! For example, in a snack machine in a school, no nut products were sold for five months because the school had a new allergen policy. If the vendor had noticed this trend after the first few weeks, more appropriate replacement products could have been selected, and less revenue may have been lost.

None of these recommendations alone will guarantee a financial improvement in your vending product. However, by following them, you can improve your business practices and thus your potential for success. For more ideas on how to grow your commercial vending enterprise, check out our blog.

The Greenlite Cashless Solution to Increase Vending Machine Profits

GreenliteHeaderWhen it comes to boosting your profits, you will want to accept as many forms of payment as possible. Consumers who have the ability to pay according to various methods have a higher chance of becoming not only a customer, but a repeat one.

Did you know that one in five people don’t ever carry cash on them? That’s right, which means they can’t make a purchase if no other form of payment is offered; this ultimately lowers your profit potentials. Here are three important facts to remember to help you understand how valuable mobile payments are.

  • There are more than a billion transactions in the US each year that don’t involve cash.
  • Over the next few years, the transactions will increase by as much as 16 percent
  • Cashless workplace transactions total 27 percent on average, which is a 62 percent increase when compared to the past two years

With the Greenlite vending machine, you are able to customize your vending equipment so that multiple types of payment can be accepted. It also facilitates processes that reduce the costs of filling the equipment thanks to integrated remote reporting. Whether you have vending machines in your workplace or not, there are Greenlite services and equipment that can be extremely valuable to the overall profit levels. Once a cashless payment option is added to your vending machines, you will likely see a 15 percent increase.

Automated reporting allows you to receive alerts when maintenance needs to be performed on the vending machines. You will also enjoy being able to manage your vending machine transactions and payments online. Gone are the days of having to guess which products are selling best. Instead, you can track your vending data and then alter what they offer as needed.

If you’re looking for a vending machine maintenance service provider, please contact us today. We are ready to answer any and all of your questions related to the Greenlite cashless system.

In Need of Replacement Parts For Your Vending Machine? You’ve Come to the Right Source

vending machine service and repairYour vending machine is the bread and butter of your business, so you would want to ensure that it works appropriately for all of your customers. Customers love to have access of the foods, drinks and products that they need. They like to know that they can walk up to the vending machine, place their funds in it, and then have what they so desire. As a business owner, you can ensure that your customers stay delighted by having access to working vending machines. VendNet USA can ensure that you never have a moment that you are not providing top-notch services to your visitors and guests.

VendNet USA is a longstanding provider of vending machine parts, vending machine replacements and service. Certified technicians can come out and tend to the simplest vending machine repair needs. They are well-versed in vending machine maintenance and vending machine repairs. They can diagnose any issue you may be having, and they can make sensible suggestions to have your machine failure prepared in the quickest time frame. The best thing about VendNet USA specialists is that they are available 24 hours a day and seven days a week. That means your business does not have to lose money just because the machine breaks down after midnight. You can count on the Vendnet USA staff members to run to the rescue at any time.

Vendnet USA has a wide assortment of parts for various vending machines. You can speak with the vender for some of the products that go in the vending machines, as well. Coffee products are available from the company. You can order French roast coffee, Cappuccino and French Vanilla if your business requires you to have coffee in the morning for you guests.

The repair items and parts that you can find through VendNet USA vary. You can seek parts and products such as clamps, bushings, chains, fuses, fans, counters, gaskets and the like. One of the trained mechanics or technicians can install your parts, or you can order the parts without the installation. The company provides a reliable warranty on every part that you purchase from it. The president of the company also offers an extended warranty for three additional months to anyone who completes the lengthy warranty questionnaire. You can rest assured that the company will take care of you if something goes awry with the parts you have purchased.

Technical support is available at all times, as well. Additionally, the company provides you with the technical support that you need at all times. All you need to do is call the dedicated number and have your questions answered.

Vending Machine Service School: Get an Education in Vending Operations

VendNet USA Vending Machine Service SchoolHave you always dreamed of owning your own business? Interested in having a career that offers excellent hours, flexibility, and income? Have you considered joining other vending machine operators as an owner and operator? Are you a current owner who would like the ability to better service your own machines? If so, we have good news for you. Class is in session!

Vending Machine School: An Education in Vending

Vending machine maintenance is a critical component of a vending business. Vending machines, while extremely reliable, can fall victim to ordinary wear and tear. Occasional replacement of vending machine parts will be necessary for any owner. The ability to handle these situations yourself, rather than employing an outside service, will protect your profit margins and increase your satisfaction in a job well done.

VendNet USA, a leading provider of vending machines and vending machine parts, is offering a two-day service school special at its Des Moines, Iowa offices. Classes will include repairs to snack, cold drink, cold and frozen food, and hot drink machines. School will be in session the following dates:

  • April 20-21, 2016
  • July 20-21, 2016
  • October 19-20, 2016

To make a reservation contact, VendNet USA at 1-888-VENDNET. The course fee is $195.00 per person and includes educational materials and lunch. Other travel and accommodation expenses are not covered. Group accommodations have been arranged at Wildwood Lodge and daily transportation to class will be provided. To make lodging accommodations, contact Wildwood Lodge at 844-538-6564 and mention Wittern Group Services to receive the special group pricing. You may choose to make your own accommodations at a different hotel, but you will need to provide your own transportation to class each day.

Register for class at least three weeks ahead of time and receive a free bill validator or coin mech repair.

Whether you are new to vending or a veteran vending machine owner, our service school will enable you to decrease operating and maintenance costs, thus increasing your vending machine profits. Download a registration form and get registered today.

Avoiding Scams: Choosing the Right Vending Machine Manufacturer

Avoid Vending Machine Scam

Photo credit: http://www.dallasnews.com/

In recent vending machine news, reporter Dave Lieber described his experience with vending machine manufacturer and re-seller, Planet Antares. In 2010, Mr. Lieber attended a conference advertised as a “Free Franchise & Home Business Conference” in Texas. Lieber describes the hour-long Planet Antares sales pitch as “cunning.” When they unveiled the Office Deli vending machine, Lieber snapped a picture of the machine and, as a result, was immediately ejected from the conference and the hotel where he was staying. Six years after the conference, many of the cheaply made Office Deli vending machines are still in the original packaging, unused and unable to be sold by their disappointed owners.

How to Avoid Vending Machine Scams

Unfortunately, scams have long existed. From pyramid and Ponzi schemes to online phishing and identity theft, crooks are diligent in reinventing themselves so as to evade detection and punishment. No matter their guise, with some diligent work on your part, you can avoid the scammers and choose the right vending machine manufacturer. We have a few tips on how to see through a con and avoid a scam:

  • Work with a company with an established history. While some businesses can operate wholly online, a vending machine company is not one of them. Even a newer vending machine services company will have a physical location and home base. A company that has been around for years, or even decades, will have an established history of customer service.
  • Research the potential company — deeply. While a cursory Google search is a good place to start your research, it should not be the only tool you use. Look for actual news articles on your target company as well as tried and true consumer protection sites such as the Better Business Bureau to get a more accurate picture of the business.
  • Avoid companies who behave as if they have something to hide from you. A legitimate company is knowledgeable about and proud of their history. When a company seems like it is trying to hide something, it probably is.
  • Avoid overly aggressive salespeople. While successful salespeople are generally known for their customer oriented extroverted nature, those who are truly aggressive and badgering may be peddling an inferior product.
  • Visit or call on actual clients of the company. As always, when possible, the best reference is that of a current or former customer.

Working with VendNet USA

VendNet USA is a part of the larger company Wittern Group, which has been in business for over 80 years. We have an established history of customer service and excellence. We provide vending machine services and parts that will keep your machines operating at maximum efficiency. With a fully stocked parts department, we can provide fast, reliable shipping anywhere in the world. Our number one goal is to provide the best possible customer service to all of our customers whether they own one machine or one hundred vending machines. Contact us today to see how we can help you with your vending business.

Don’t Be In The Dark, Light Up Your Vending Machine with LED Lights

led lighting kits for vending machineThere is no question that LED lighting options are one of the most popular types of lighting used today. LED lights are efficient, bright and last longer than traditional options. This is why they are often seen used in homes, businesses, for street lamps and even in vehicles. One of the newest applications for LED lighting is in vending machines.

With vending machines popping up all over the place and vending machine services having to be called for bulb replacement often, a new option for lighting these machines has been developed. With LED lighting, the bulbs do not have to be replaced as often and ensure what is inside can be clearly seen – regardless of what time at day or night the machine is being used.

There are a number of benefits offered by using this lighting option, which include:

  • A low voltage option: The vending machine LED lights will plug into the existing 24 volt power sources. There is no need for auxiliary transformers for these kits.
  • Clear view of available products: When the lighting is successfully installed, those interested in purchasing something will have a clear view of what is for sale. Also, the bulbs are arranged in a way to illuminate the vending machine evenly, which prevents dim or dark sections.
  • Save energy: LED lights can lead to a power savings of up to 60 percent.
  • Extended bulb life: LED bulbs can last up to five to 10 years.
  • No toxic materials: With fluorescent bulbs, you run the risk of exposing users to mercury, which is toxic.

When you have successfully installed LED bulbs you will also not have to invest in as many service calls. This means when a vending machine needs to be worked on, it will not be the bulbs that have to be replaced; however, this will not minimize the need for other vending machine parts, which is something to keep in mind.

Also, since you are not having to call for service on the vending machine as often, you will not have to pay as much. This will save you quite a bit of time and money.

When you choose LED lights for your vending machine, they brighten the items that are inside and this will help to encourage them to make a purchase. When the vending machine is dark and the items are not able to be clearly seen, a person may be hesitant to actually make a purchase. As a result of this increased sales, the ROI on the LED lighting will be seen almost immediately.

When it comes to vending machines, takes some time to make sure yours is able to be used at all times, day and night, and that the cost of repairs and replacement bulbs is not excessive. If it is, then changing to LED bulbs may be the best solution for you and your bottom line.