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How to Start A Vending Machine Business in 5 Steps

Benefits of Vending Machine Business

Starting a vending machine business also means a new opportunity. You may get into thinking that this bulky machine can only sell as much as snacks and drinks. It may seem that making a vending machine business is fairly easy, especially since we rarely see them these days. On the bright side, the pandemic gave a spotlight to the vending machine business. With vending machines, the physical distancing rule can still be obeyed and the shorter business hours should not be a problem. From entertainment venues, shopping malls to office buildings, placing vending machines can be a great addition to earn profits.

Starting your own vending machine business is definitely a good idea. Today, anyone can rent a vending machine—from helping a certain location for easier access to shop, to generating extra income. Everyone is eligible for this business. But beginners and professionals alike, both need a solid business plan for starting this vending machine business.

Business Structure

Starting a vending business means a more flexible business model. Even with a low startup cost, a vending machine that is placed in a relevant high-traffic area can still earn profits.

You need to draft the financial planning that stays within your budget. The startup cost can be low, but somewhere along the way, who knows you might need to service the machine or if there is a possibility of upgrading your products as well. Other financial aspects can also regarding paying the rented space to place your vending machine. A small area may only need a small fortune to pay, either monthly or annually. But some places consider the small area as an actual store and may charge you a full store rental fee just for an insignificant area placing the vending machine. So you might want to look further into that.

Starting the vending machine business in 5 steps:

  1. Consider The Products

The standard vending machine usually sells snacks and drinks. If you have thought of joining this vending machine business, you probably have some creative ideas to give this a try. In general, there are four categories you can consider: food & beverages, bulk vending, specialty vending and partnering options.

Food & beverages – You can never go wrong with this category. It can vary from beverages only, snacks only, or both snacks and drinks. Some consider owning different types of vending machines in one location, or the other way, one machine in multiple locations.

Multipurpose vending – These usually appear as smart vending machines, and they can sell almost anything. Beauty products, essential travel items, or small electronic products are just the several types they can fit into their bulky machines. This means they can sell hot and cold foods, as the machine keeps the expiry date like how normal refrigerators do. They also can be customised to the brand, so if you think this category is what you are looking for, you can start by reading about customising your vending machine and running a marketing campaign with a vending machine.

  • Find Location

After choosing the mentioned category you want to start with, deciding the right location for your business is also a crucial factor that cannot be chosen blindly. A standard snacks and drinks vending machine can be a better choice to put in office buildings rather in the middle of a shopping mall. But on the other hand, a beauty vending machine thrives in shopping malls and will not get any attention in office buildings. You can also read on how to choose locations to put vending machines.

  • Choose Vending Machine Type

You have chosen the products and the location, the next step is to choose the right vending machine. For example, Smartven offers three options of vending machine types with two categories: analog and digital. In short, digital is the ones with the small LCD touchscreen and the analog one is the standard vending machine. Both types can be customised to your own design and branding. SVA is the analog version and perfect for snacks and drinks. They accept cash, so they can be put in areas where people have troubles with online payment with apps and smartphones. Also works in school areas or factories. Other versions, SV22 and SV49 have LCD touchscreens, with the number noting the LCD size in inch. Namely the smart vending machine, they are connected to the Cloud Management System (CMS) where you can check your inventories and your machine status even when you are away. You can check the vending machine catalog prices here.

  • Find the Target Market

Now, decide on a target market where your business will grow. This can also be seen as profitable in entertainment venues like the cinema or shopping malls. Without having an actual store, it can also minimise labour costs and have even more flexible hours. Maybe you sell some healthy snacks and energy drinks right by the gym, or maybe you want to sell milks and biscuits at school, or the standard snacks and drinks at the factory area, the choices of these vending businesses are varied in choices.

  • Stocking Products, Repairs and Maintenance

Recently, most vending machines are integrated with a smarter option, using the Cloud to send you your vending machine information within several clicks from your screen. Smartven offers this Cloud feature, included with the installation, filling and restocking of your vending machine. Aside from checking the product stocks, the system can show your sales report, so it is a very convenient business that you can constantly check while being remote. The Cloud system also allows you to check the status of the vending machine, should it need repairs or if a problem occurred.

Purchasing Vending Machines

Once everything is planned, you can start looking for options to rent or purchase your vending machine. You can look for companies that specialize in vending machines, where you can ask for prices, machine size and configuration, and what type of payments are available. Some vending machines offer cashless payments using QR codes, and some still accept banknotes.

Should you need more information on Smartven and want to start your vending machine business, you can click the button below to book your consultation. You can also check our website and Instagram for more tips and insights on vending machine business. Stay healthy and see you soon!


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