Almost no one can make it through a day at work without a simple snack and something to drink. But in locations that are far from eateries or those where work is too hectic, the only place to turn is a vending machine. Companies that have vending machines often hear a host of complaints about them for a variety of reasons. Those who want to enter the vending business will find it takes a little savvy to make customers happy.
Making money on vending machines is a very feasible process. These machines are needed by virtually every company that has more than a handful of employees. Whether the business you set up is designed solely for your profit alone or as one that splits profits with the company that plays host to the machines, there are ways to encourage purchases. Here are some tips to make sure your vending business is the best in town.
* Find good suppliers. Whether you're selling sodas alone or snacks as well, it's a good idea to find suppliers who offer you the most bang for your buck. Be certain to find the best bulk purchases, especially if you intend to keep more than a single machine stocked. The better your buys, the more reasonable your prices can be, which encourages sales.
* Fair pricing. If sodas at the store next door are 60 cents a can and you're charging 75, it's not likely you'll do well with your machine. Make the pricing fair, but do be certain to make a decent profit as well. Think quantity over high pricing and you'll be set on this front.
* Make frequent restock/maintenance visits. There's nothing more frustrating to a thirsty employee than a soda machine that's out of their favorite drink. Or, worse yet, one that won't accept dollar bills when it's suppose to. To keep your customers happy, be certain to check on your machines frequently.
* Stock with a variety. People like variety. Watch what they drink and/or eat the most and keep those items stocked, maybe even double stocked, but don't be afraid to try new things. Offering a variety of "junk food" snacks without a few healthy choices won't earn you points either.
* Ask customers what they want and pay attention to feedback. If you're catering to an office that has 10 diet soda drinkers and only two that drink regular pop, don't stock seven slots on an eight slot machine with regular soda.
The vending machine business can be lucrative for those who do their part to ensure the routes are properly handled. Just like any other business, you are only as good as your customers say you are. Take feedback and act on it. Make sure your machines function properly and keep them stocked with a variety, while being certain to always have employee favorites on hand.
Whether it's soda, snacks or both, variety and good customer service are the keys to this business. If you give your customers what they want and stay on top of their needs, they're likely to keep feeding your machines their spare change.
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