Vending machines have become a familiar part of our daily lives, from snack and drink machines in the workplace to ones that dispense tissues and other small personal goods in bathrooms. There are even book vending machines available at locations like airports and universities. With a growing demand for convenience, consumers are attracted to vending machines and the goods they offer.
This is a lucrative market for the right person to enter, and the best way to start a vending business is by considering a vending machine franchise. A franchise opportunity will allow you to have access to bulk purchasing power, which can reduce the cost of stock and the vending machines themselves. There are also many different types of vending franchise opportunities to choose from, although refreshment vending machines are the most common.
Your job as a franchisee will be to grow your vending business by finding great locations to put your vending machines, and convincing the building or business owners that they would also benefit from the presence of the machines. You will also have to manage the vending machines, including servicing, restocking, and collecting money on the machines. Depending on the product, the amount of re-stocking and maintenance will differ. For example, food and drinks will require more restocking efforts than a tissue vending machine.
Some of the attractive points of vending machine franchises are:
- You can run these as part time or full time franchises. Either way, there are flexible hours involved; you can choose when to service your machine according to what’s convenient for your schedule. That can be helpful for people with children that need to be picked up and dropped off at school, as well as people with hobbies and interest that may require hours that a 9 to 5 job doesn’t accommodate.
- You’ll get support for your machines. Franchisors will help you with complicated repairs that need to be done on the machines by sending backup from the Head Office or a third party to complete the repair. You should also get assistance with any regulations or licences needed for the industry from your franchisor.
- You don’t need special education. There aren’t any education requirements, like college degrees or lots of work experience. These are easy-to-operate franchises that don’t require extensive education.
- You don’t have to chase down payments. Since people pay cash for their vending machine purchases, you won’t have to worry about tracking people down and asking for payments. They will already be safely stored in the machine, ready for you to pick up and deposit in the bank.
- You get to interact with lots of different people. Since the bulk of your job consists of having meetings with new clients and keeping up with your current customer base, you won’t have to worry about feeling isolated. There will be plenty of opportunities to make new friends, and ample opportunity to get referrals and drum up new business.
- There are low overheads. Your biggest fees will be for buying stock for your machines and petrol for the car you use to drive to and from the machines.
- There is fantastic income potential. Although your income will depend highly on whether you decide to pursue a part time or full time vending franchise, you will have great earning potential. Part time vending franchises will generally offer a substantial second income, whilst full time franchises will give you a much higher earning potential.
- You won’t be stuck in an office all day. With a vending franchise, you don’t have to sit behind a desk for eight hours, staring at a computer screen. Vending franchises allow you to get out there and meet new people, as well as travel to potential and existing locations for vending machines.
If these benefits of vending business opportunities pique your interest, here are some tips for running your own successful vending machine franchise:
- Know your local area well. It’s important for you to keep researching your local area to find the best vending sites. Location is important in the vending machine industry, so make sure you position yourself for success! Remember, higher traffic means more business.
- Create lasting relationships. Try to cultivate friendships or good relationships with everyone you come in contact with. These people can help you find new locations to place machines and get you repeat business and referrals for new business.
- Think creatively. Don’t limit yourself to obvious locations for your vending machines. Think outside the box from the typical shopping mall or gym. For instance, consider whether or not the foot traffic in the location ever stands still or needs to wait. That would make a place like a train station or bus stop a great place for vending machines. Think of locations where there aren’t coffee shops and stores readily available, so people turn to vending machines instead. Also, putting machines in groups can make them more successful, as people feel they have more choices.
- Keep your machines stocked. When you keep the machines full, your product will look more attractive. Although this seems counterintuitive, marketers say this works.
- Open a post office account. Since your vending machine business is cash-based, you will have lots of coins to cash in. Banks will charge you a fee for counting the coins, but post offices won’t. So take your money to a post office first and get it counted, then transfer it to a bank.
- Get motivated. To be a successful franchisee, you cannot afford to be afraid of sourcing new locations, meeting new people, and selling your product.
If these key advantages of vending franchises have made you eager to start your own, please browse through Franchise Direct’s directory of vending franchise opportunities.