How to Start a Vending Machine Business
If you’ve seen the flurry of activity around vending machines in an office building, you may have wondered how to start a vending machine business of your own. Starting a vending machine business is a wise choice since not only is this industry recession proof, it’s a cash-only business.
However, before you start vending machine business operations, it’s important to have a plan in place. A vending machine business plan will help you to know exactly what steps you need to take to achieve your business goals. You also should do some research into what types of items sell better in which locations.
After you have your machines set up and stocked, you’ll also need to know how to run a vending machine business. You don’t have to have any experience to be successful with this business idea but you do need some tips from experienced vending machine business owners so you’ll know how to avoid pitfalls and operate a thriving business. Before you know it, you might just have a full-time staff of vending machine stockers working for you.
A Day in the Life of a Vending Machine Business Owner:
Your day will start with a check of your schedule to see what machines need to be stocked that day. If you have a staff working for you, you’ll make sure they know which routes they will be on that day. Then you will need to check inventory to ensure you have enough supply on hand. If you are running low on supplies, you or one of your workers will need to make a trip to the store (or visit your online supplier) to replenish your snacks.
You’ll likely spend some time marketing your services to potential clients. These could be office managers, apartment building managers, schools, etc. Finally, you’ll want to take a look at your finances to make sure all bills are paid and all income is properly recorded. Since this is a cash only business, you will be making several trips to the coin machine and/or bank each week.
About Your Customers:
Your ultimate customers will be office workers, students and passersby who need a snack or a soda. However, you will also be working with location managers at places like apartment buildings, sports complexes, schools, grocery stores, etc.
What You Need to Start:
- Vending machine(s) (buy or lease)
- Snacks (candy, chips, pretzels, etc.)
- Sodas (if operating a soda machine)
- Business plan
- Good location(s)
- Computer with finance software
- Vending machines are popular in any economy.
- Cash-only means not having to keep track of checks or credit card information.
- This business is easily scalable to add more machines to your business.
- As you add machines to your business, it will transform into an automated system in which you do very little work and earn huge profits.
- At the beginning, you will be doing a lot of legwork getting things set up.
- Finding new locations to put your machines may be difficult.