How hard can it be to operate a vending business? You do not have to have the skills of a salesman and it is possible to make a full-time living working part-time hours. Even though the vending business looks like a simple business to run, it takes certain skills to be successful.
Pay attention to costs
If you want to maximize your revenue and bottom line profits, you need to pay very careful attention to costs. For every dollar in sales you make, there are expenses that must be deducted.
- Inventory – candy bars, sodas and other items you stock in the vending machine
- Servicing your route – Costs money whether you do it yourself or hire someone
- Spoilage – you can’t sell stale products or products with ripped packaging
- Theft & Vandalism – vending machines make easy targets
- Maintenance – machines need to be serviced and sometimes need repairs
Manage your expenses
- Find a reliable supplier and look for quantity discounts.
- Reduce deliver & pickup costs by planning routes and combining product stocking and cash retrieval into one trip.
- Store inventory in a climate controlled environment.
- Indoor locations are more secure and less prone to theft and vandalism.
- Use a professional vending machine parts and service company like Vend Net USA to assure that your machines are always in top operating condition.
Today’s vending machines are nothing like the vending machines your father or grandfather may have used. Advancements in technology have made smart vending machines almost as popular as smartphones.
As a small business owner, you now have more tools than ever that will allow you to manage your vending machine business more efficiently. It is now possible for customers to pay for their snacks or drinks with their smartphone. It is also possible for a vending machine business owner to get instant feedback from all of the vending machines on his or her route without ever leaving the house.
You can free up your schedule by connecting from a remote location to access valuable data and even change the prices of the items in your vending machine. Companies like SAP and Axeda have applications for machines that can tell you how much of each product you have sold and let you know when the machine needs to be refilled.
You can also free up time in your schedule by contracting with a company like Vend Net USA, who can service and repair all of your vending machines so you do not lose business and do not get complaints from angry customers.
Using technology and partnering with experts who know everything there is to know about vending machines will give you the time to look for new locations, install additional vending machines and grow your business.
With all the vending technology available to vending machine manufacturers today, it is no surprise that the sizes, shapes and features of machines are constantly changing. Vending technology can come in some surprising forms as well. A young girl named Brooke Martin has developed a vending machine (of sorts) for your dog!
Her invention, the iCPooch combines video chatting capabilities available on most computers and smart phones with a small device that dispenses treats for dogs. It might not have all of the complex vending machine parts found in traditional machines, but the simplicity of this machine gives owners an easy way to interact with their favorite pets from anywhere in the world.
The machine has audio and video outputs so your dog can hear and see you. When you have their attention, there is a feature that allows you to remotely drop a treat for your pet.
This project is currently being funded as a Kickstarter project has around a third of the funds it needs to fund the project. Vend Net USA loves seeing creative new vending ideas like this!
There are a lot of great new technologies hitting the vending industry and creating exciting new opportunities to improve your patrons’ experiences. One of these technologies making splashes in the vending industry is the use of QR, or Quick Response, codes.
For vending machine operators, these barcodes can be scanned by patrons and their smart phones will automatically be directed to take an action. These codes can be used for many purposes, but a service that customers will truly appreciate is an easy way to contact you if your vending machine is broken or there is an issue with its service. Printing a QR code and using it next to the contact information for your machine makes it easy for customers to find your website and specific contact forms that they can use to report an issue with your machines.
Once customers contact you about service issues with your machine, Vend Net USA can help get your machine running as soon as possible with vending machine repairs and parts. Giving your customers the ability to contact you immediately and then using Vend Net USA to act quickly on the repairs will keep them coming back and reduce any missed profits from the downtime of your machine.