How to buy a vending machine
Vending machine business has turned out to be a very lucrative business opportunity.
Across airports, shopping malls, theaters, schools, etc., you must have seen vending machine selling products right from snacks to electronics.
And it turns out to be that many are clocking weekly revenue running into several hundred dollars!
But you know the best part about it? There is no human to human interaction that facilitates buying from a vending machine. This helps in reducing costs for the owner of vending machine and also making it a seamless experience for the buyer. All the buyer needs to do is select the product he wants to buy, make the payment and walk away with his new possession.
Vending machines have been there for decades if not a century.
The first one being introduced in the United Kingdom in 1880 which used to disburse postcards.
These vending machines have come a long way from then. There are several reasons why vending machines are great. Let us try to understand some of them.
Advantages of a vending machine
1. There are two ways to hard sell your products – offer a product range that creates value for customers or provide services that are efficient and unparalleled.
This helps you develop a longstanding trust and credibility with the customers. Vending machine helps you to achieve both of them. They are efficient and the products are reliably sourced.
2. With an increasing awareness about organic and healthy product ranges, vending machine is turning out to be a great way to distribute products in these portfolios. It is precisely for this reason that many startups have come up to encash on the benefits this trend has generated.
3. A vending machine business does not require much time constraints. After a vending machine has been installed you do not have to devote much time to manage it. Frequent visits to have a look at the stock levels and maintenance is all that would be required. You have free time to take up other work as well.
What you need to know before you move forward on how to buy a vending machine?
There a few things that you need to look into before you finally decide on buying a vending machine. Though it is easy to set up a vending machine, there are several factors that you need to look into.
Let us have a look at some of them
Choose the right business model
Like every other industry there are different models that you can take up to expand your business. You can either start your own company or collaborate with an existing one. Both will have their strengths and advantages and the type of vending machine you buy would depend upon the same.
A completely new venture would provide you better flexibility but a collaboration might provide you recognition and branding. Both have their advantages but you need to measure your goals and decide accordingly.
Pick the perfect location
Before going ahead you should conduct a thorough research to find out the best locations where you can place your vending machines. The location should have a good visibility and high foot traffic to generate revenue.
You would not want to place your machine at a location which does not have any considerable high traffic of people.
Look into the size constraints
Vending machines are available in all sizes. You have to figure out the space availability of the location and decide on buying a vending machine accordingly.
You would not want to buy a big vending machine and end up not being able to stock it at the location you intended to.
This would waste your money and effort.
I myself sometimes gets excited when a customer calls me to place a vending machine. During my early vending days I would promptly lease a vending machine and eventually find out that the location is not making enough revenue to pay the monthly lease of the vending machine.
The type of products that you are going to stock will also have an impact on your decision to buy a vending machine.
Choose the product range
This is extremely important and crucial. The products that would be offered through your vending machine should be saleable and relevant to the location.
For example, it would be a good idea to place electronic products like Go Pro cameras, iPad, smart phones and smart watches at a vending machine in the airport lounge. Many travelers would be willing to buy them and thus help you generate higher revenue.
However, offering electronics on the streets of Brazil would not be practical. Rather, potato chips and aerated beverages should be preferred and saleable in the latter location. This will also be a major factor in determining the model of vending machine you are going to buy.
You are now aware of some small details that needs to be taken into account before buying a vending machine. You must have already decided the location and business model that you would opt for. So now all you need to do is buy a vending machine.
Let us look into how to buy a vending machine
There are many ways through which you can buy a vending machine. You could buy them from brick and mortar sellers in your location or place an order online at the leading eCommerce platforms such as craigslist or Facebook marketplace.
There are many leading vending machine manufacturers from whom you can buy a vending machine directly from their website. Some of them like Vending.com, Avanti, Champion Vending USA, etc. There is a large portfolio of products that these companies have to offer and you can buy the one bust suited for your need.
If you shop online you must have surely bought some products from eCommerce portals like eBay and Amazon. These portals offer products for sale from all categories. They also sell vending machines on their website. You can buy your vending machines from these sites as well. The best part from buying these websites is that you can take a look at the customer reviews to get an idea about the product.
Second hand machines
Another important source for buying your vending machines is from websites that sell used vending machines. This will help you save on the cost of investment and help increase profitability. Some websites like CraigsList.org and UsedVending.com are great places to buy used vending machines from.
You can search for locally available products which will help you get your hands on a vending machine at the earliest.
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