I was mentioning on my previous post that if you run a coffee vending business the profit margin will be around 300% which is very appealing and lucrative with just buying powders in bulk for the consumables. But today i visited a wholesaler in the lower mainland and was checking out some neat looking coffee vending machines, but the cost is beyond my reach.
A full size coffee vending machine is around $7,000 to $8,000 and the ROI would take around 3 years! if you would be doing some financing terms.
The sales manager also told me that a lot of coffee people doing this business have had a lot of headaches in maintaining the machines and the parts are extremely expensive and plus the factor is during summer time when people don’t consume as much coffee, the powder inside the coffee vending machine gets dried up and seizing the motors not to function properly, it is just so much maintenance to do!
I saw an alternative, which will require no maintenance and will run like a snack vending machine!
so the cost of the Keurig K Cup Dispenser here in Vancouver, BC Canada is around $700 Canadian Dollars and the Cabinet stand is around $200 and the Keurig which you can buy at CL used ones which are plentyful can be added to your existing locations.
Please bear in mind that this setup will absolutely not work in some run down locations that you have, or else you will end up the whole K Cup Dispenser and Keurig stolen! ha ha ha
i have a good location which i visit every 2 weeks and was talking to some people why there are missing chips on the top shelf and told me that probably the method used was a clothes hanger to obtain free chips.
and today was the day i returned to have to refill the location after 2 weeks then the person in charge told me they caught the person stealing the chips and was fired. I replied and responded that if the person have the capability to steal $1 chips with so much effort then do you think the company would entrust this person to work in your company??? Surely there would be missing expensive parts at the expense of the company. It was good that the person was fired, but i just don’t get it, if i enjoy tinkering and maintaining vehicles and get paid for $25 to $30 an hour, why bother stealing $1 product from me and without the thought that i have to drive there all the way from richmond for 30 minutes with my time, gasoline and traffic and just earn a meager $40 to $50 from the total sales from 2 machines ( pop and snack machines ) which it accumulated for 2 weeks?
I thought the clothes hanger was from under the delivery bin to obtain free chips but my god, believe it or not the person who was doing this had the time to drill several holes on the top of the snack machine and from there was stealing the chips from above and not from the delivery bin according to my assumption. what an ingenious way to steal $1 free product each time.
Normally people who are into the Pop and Snack vending industry here in vancouver, bc do not venture beyond pop and snack machines. Coffee vending machine business is actually a very lucrative business, the profit margin for this business is around 300%, when i started doing the vending business i had some locations with coffee vending machines.
Problem is that i had to spend more money in fixing the machines than earning, so i scrap the idea of running the coffee vending business. If im stable enough in the pop and snack locations, then it would be a wise idea to delve into adding the existing locations with a coffee vending machine business, but of course you need to equip yourself know how in basic repair and diagnostics… till the next article when i have a few of these in the future…
What do you think about the Coffee Business ? Please take a minute and share your comments or opinion below
You know that i’m not in authority to tackle this subject since i’m also just going through the journey in earning my first few dollars online.
The good thing is that i’m good but not really good in researching things pertaining to an interest or niche, so after countless days and hours on pondering and googling ( if there is such a word ) “How To Earn Money Online” or “Easy Online Income” and all its variant keywords that comes to my mind.
I found several contenders that will teach you how to make money online : JohnCrestani.com , JohnChow.com, Clickbank Univeristy, Clickfunnels, Mastery Affiliate and so much more. I’m even willing to spend 100 or even 1000 thousand’s of dollars just to enter and go in the bandwagon on how to make your first dollar! I’m willing to even pay thousands on mentorship
Tried also search at CL if there are people who are savvy in the Online World. I couldn’t believe that i stumbled a website called : WealthyAffiliate.com and i thought its just one of the scammers but its FREE and there is no risk involved and no contracts and you can build your 2 free websites and there is a real community inside this online world that actually help you in an engaging way!
there are numerous configurations of vending machines on the market and nowadays the manager in charge of the establishment normally wanted a combo vending machine instead of the traditional : pop and snack separate machines.
but it really depends on the location, if the consumers likes to drink a lot of pop like hotels, factory, community centers, school, gymnasiums then a separate setup with be the best choice.
right now here in vancouver, bc most of the sales are coming from 3 kinds of combo machines which people prefer on their location.
With this setup you can put any kind of drinks and it would be an easier job for the vendor to bring an assortment of drinks and adjust prices. you also can make more revenue by adding large type of beverages like : energy drinks, large bottles water, kombucha and all sorts of drinks that you can imagine. this combo machine is marketed as a healthy max combo machine and preferred by more customers because of its graphical look. this machine doesn’t have a drop sensor for the product to spin again in case it gets stuck halfway.
This is around in the ballpark of $3,000 to $3,500 for a USED one.
Don’t get scammed by buying $5,000 or even $8,000 from marketing companies that promises you a location with it. They normally give you an under performing location and you loose all your life savings with that marketing company with fancy website and promising great location for it.
With this kind of machine, it is the same setup as the machine above, this USI VT3000 machine is preferred by me since it is more advanced in technology and the motors are most sturdy. This is a bit more expensive then the healthy max combo machine, this has a drop sensor and if products gets stuck the coils will spin again thereby drastically reducing service calls from customers. The price for a Used one is normally $3,500 to $4,000 here in Vancouver, BC
This combo machine which is commonly called as LCM4 type, is very sturdy and virtually no problems. It is an older technology where you cannot put any size of beverages but just the cans type. The thing about this machine is that there are many parts for it and also it is relatively inexpensive and presentable as a combo machine. Its technology can still accept MDB type interfaces ( meaning it can accept the new bill validators, debit credit readers ). Normally this is sold presently here in Vancouver, BC around $1,500 to $2,500
You’ve heard that vending business sale down due to pandemic, but do you know why? It’s because of the effects of the virus on the human mind.
People will shy away from everything they see, and that includes the food and drinks that are available in your vending machine, and it can make selling at your business a difficult and miserable experience.
That said, here are a few certain things that you should have ready when people decide to come into your vending business: bottled water, cups of water, clean drinking water, wet wipes, toothpaste, mints, tissues, unscented baby powder, hot milk, healthy snacks like chips, cookies, and bagels, and any other snacks or sweets that are appropriate.
Put some ketchup or mustard into your snack food like chips and crackers and a bag of chips with a small bottle of bottled water.
That way, you can serve both hot and cold snacks and drinks as well as add a little zest to the vending business.
Sometimes it’s nice to have a small bar of your favorite sweets so that you don’t have to rely on having it sitting around your vending machine, nor do you have to worry about the employees having it all the time.
Just have the candy and soda machines for the kids to eat and leave the healthy snacks and drinks for your customers.
Yes, I hear many stories on the vendors here in Vancouver, BC. Here are the scenarios.
Vendors who exclusively cater to community centers are doomed
Vendors who exclusively cater to schools are doomed
Vendors who exclusively cater to downtown offices are doomed
The 2nd phase of reopening is in effect already here in Vancouver, BC but there are still lots of places such as : community centers, continuing education, ESL, gymnasiums, swimming pools, outdoor events and movie theaters are all closed.
Even if they are open, the people here in Vancouver, BC jobs are cut 50%. Self-employed businesses are losing money or hardly making ends meet.
I have started visiting my locations in Downtown Vancouver, BC offices and all of them are on bare minimum attendance.
I got downtown offices before the pandemic with 100 to 300 and now it is just 20 employees working, so how will vending machine business survive?
Good thing that there is CERB offered by the government where self employed individuals and contractors earning less than $1,000 can avail the $2,000 offered by the government which will end on September.
Im not working from home so if i do not go out then I do not have money on the table to pay bills, rent or mortgage.
Here is the usual collections from my visits and the general look of the vending locations that I visit.
See the pictures below.
collecting expired chips
Collecting expired chocolate bars
Where is everyone
My collection for the above location
Vending Operators Who Depend on Colleges and Schools Have Hurt the Worst
Many people are now making their money in a different way that those who depend on vending operators who depend on colleges and schools have hurt the worst.
Before the pandemic the college operators are the ones who do the best, they are the ones who know what they want.
The college vending machine operators need to take a step back and look at the big picture.
If they continue to use college vending operators who depend on colleges and schools, they are always going to be at the bottom of the list, and they may never recover.
Office Transitions to Working From Home
Many offices have had to make the decision to start planning for office work that can be done from home. This is a very common trend in today’s business world.
Many corporations are seeing how great it is to be able to hire people and they are taking advantage of this. These jobs are not only high paying but are also relatively easy to maintain.
Many offices that did not have a necessity for an office from home also transitioned to working from home.
It is a lot easier to transport files around to allow employees to move to other areas or even take them with them if they want to.
There are some companies that will even reimburse for the costs of travel when the person is on leave from work.
This means that employees are not having to commute by public transportation and they do not have to worry about parking fees.
A lot of companies will also offer a good amount of money as an incentive to get an employee to work from home. They see this as a great benefit and one that is worth the time spent and the investment of funds.
Many offices that were not going to get into this kind of employment have also started using the Internet for a way to perform tasks that would require them to have to drive somewhere.
With the internet and the way that businesses are moving forward, this is becoming a lot easier. More offices are now utilizing these ways to be able to bring in a better income. It is a good move for them to make because if they do not do this, they are missing out on this type of revenue.
Productivity Has Decreased Since Employees Were Sent Home to Work
Vending Operators Need Time to Recover Their Losses
Vending operators suffered loss as well and they will need time to recover. For example, before the recent economic downturn when people were able to shop in malls, they could spend a lot of money shopping for items that would just a few hours later be sold out on the streets.
Most people would never be able to find the specific item they were looking for unless it was sold in a vending machine or convenience store.
It is because most people prefer to buy food and drink, they do not want to walk around or drive around any longer, instead, they would just take their order and buy them at the store.
When the economy started to go down and the number of people working started to drop, this created an unfortunate situation in which many numerous businesses started to suffer loss.
After a while, more people would lose their jobs, and other businesses were not able to hire new employees.
As a result, the number of lost jobs quickly increased and people started to make their living by working at home.
In addition, the number of people working at home also rose, so the number of vendors needed to compete for each customer who would visit the business also increased.
All these different factors resulted in a situation where operators needed to think of a way to recover.
In other words, they needed to try to regain what they had lost.
To make sure that they will have enough resources to handle the increase in customers, the operators will need time to recover.
This is because they might not even be able to make enough money to support themselves with the amount of money they lost.
During these hard times, the owners of the business might want to consider employing outside help, such as a contract vending services which will allow them to hire individuals or teams who can help them to recover what they had lost.
Don’t Put All Your Eggs In One Basket On Vending Business Locations
If you want to get into the vending machine business but want to put all your eggs in one basket then there are a few things that you can do to help you succeed.
As I have mentioned before. If you rely only on community centers, schools, airports, gymnasiums, and continuing education you would lose your home and everything since there is virtually no one using the machines on those locations.
Sometimes you would wonder which is the best coin mech that is worry free and doesn’t give you problems with payouts and jamming. And would give you a trouble free problems for years to come. i had many coin mechs and so far the best that i can recommend is the :
MARS CF7512 5 Tbe MEI Coin Mech
5 Tube Cassette .25 .10 .25 1 .05
Instant parring-dispenses surplus coins and identifies replenishment when needed
Well according to my experience i had numerous dollies destroyed. i’m going to write and pros and cons on each dolly type that i have used before :
i had several of these folding hand type dolly around 3 of them and at first i have a great time with it but it will never last for 3 months, problems is the springs attached to the steel rod comes off and most of time are the steel wheel it gets misaligned and its gets dented to a hollow point that it is beyond repair.
this type is very sturdy but the downside is that if you have a cargo van it occupies a lot of space and sometimes you have to deal with flats.
this is great dolly which i got it from Canadian Tire and made by Cosco, it is a 3 ways dolly, and it is part aluminum which is very light, the 1st problem that i can live with is the top portion black plastic internal spring holder got broken and couldn’t be fixed so the 2nd way posts keeps on dropping and cannot be locked, i lived with it for 1 year since it is a minor problem and the 2nd problem that came along is the sides hinges got broken, i was able to live with it for about 2 years! by the way not to mention one of the wheels came loose and got flat and had the replace the wheel assembly
i recently was contemplating on getting this type of dolly which i found at The Home Depot but the problem again that i foresaw was there were steel clips on the side that without it the dolly will not function as a 2 way, so i just forgo with it. At home depot i saw this dolly without steel clips on the side, i assumed that someone loss those steel clips and stole it or perhaps the design is not very good that the steel clips just loose.
this type of dolly cannot be used for vending because the bottom gets broken easily with a few cases of pop, so you should scratch the idea of lightweight foldable dolly since it doesn’t look sturdy at all.
i recently got a shifter 2in1 hand truck dolly on sale from canadian tire for $59.99, its very lightweight and i can put it anywhere inside the cargo van and so far im very happy with it, i just used it today and its quiet, no flat wheels. i still do not know the problem with this dolly but i sense that this cannot be pulled moved on stairs because of the smaller wheels but i can always move the load on the stairs first. the advantages so far outweighs the disadvantage.
This is an update , recently the wheels beneath the shifter 2 in 1 dolly gave way and it only lasted for me around 2 months of usage and it is not as sturdy as i thought.
Presently im using a dolly with no problems so far and it only costs me about $100 canadian to buy it from Home Depot and here is a similar picture :
Mine is the stainless steel version with bigger inflated wheels as compared to this picture.
In case if you wanted to move your vending machines to locations then you will be needing another kind of dollies.
When you are running your daily vending machine business, its very irritating for people to constantly call you while you are driving or filling up machines. Almost all vendors just don’t like people calling and interrupting while they are working and especially driving, it creates tremendous stress. Sometimes i get cranky on the phone when people calls me since you are always on the move and beating the time to your next location.
There are some common issues when people call you and this is the list i made according to my experience.
Coins just goes through the exit slot and doesn’t even register on the LED Display
Coins at times gets eaten by the machine and doesn’t even register a credit display
Bills taken by machine without any credit
Can or Bottle gets stuck on the Glass Front Display Pop Machine
Chips especially the longer packed Smart Popcorn gets stuck on the delivery bin
Bowl Noodles gets stuck on the delivery bin
Kit Kat ( the rectangular size ) gets stuck on the coils partially hanging
Around 80% of the problems are caused by customers that do not know how to use the vending machine, several reasons would be listed below :
Insert foreign coins or tokens or slugs , the size of these coins are larger in size and diameter thereby a tendency in jamming the coin mechanism
2. Bent Coins
3. Inserting coins too fast thereby jamming the coin mech
4. Nudging the glass front vending machine while dispensing thereby causing the other bottle or can to get stuck on the glass front, probably was trying to get a second free drink
5. The Smart Popcorn is just too long and the delivery bin is too narrow, the solution is to remove this Smart PopCorn completely from the machine or moving the Smart Popcorn coil to the last bottom row
6. Bowl Noodle Spiral must also be placed on the last bottom row to avoid incidents
7. Kit Kat ( Red Rectangular ) getting stuck, simply just remove this product for people to avoid texting or calling you
If you can prevent these problems then you will not be getting annoying calls or text and real problem calls will be occasional.
The most common problem that you can solve when coin goes through the slot without any credit on the display is the make a cold reset on the vending machine, when the location calls you on this problem, just tell them to switch the breaker off and wait a few seconds and turn on the breaker switch on again. This will avoid your gasoline and time to reach there especially when you are interrupted servicing a location that is like for example : Surrey then someone calls you from downtown or east vancouver.