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Is it Possible to Makey Money with Vending Machines?

Category: Recent Articles  |  Permalink

Published: Thursday, March 6, 2014

 Vending machines are everywhere - in stores, office lobbies, schools, public buildings, recreation centers, restaurants, and company break rooms. And all those quarters and one-dollar bills can add up to some good money for their owners.  In fact, in 2010 Vending Times Magazine stated, "Last year, over $42 billion was spent in vending machines in this country."  That's a LOT of quarters!!


Though some entrepreneurs earn healthy six-figure incomes from the vending machine business, most owners fail to reach those lofty figures. Like any venture, to get the most out of a vending business, you need to have a business plan before beginning. Here are a few tips to help you make the most money as safely and quickly as possible:


  • Determine your budget.  Though you may have to finance the purchase of equipment, it is not advisable to extend yourself financially beyond your means. You want to earn a profit in the business, not spend it all paying back the loan.


  • Decide on the type of machine or machines you want to own.  This is usually a factor of your budget, your preferences (you may live a healthy lifestyle and prefer healthy vending), and your determination of what may sell best in your area.  Machine such as "combos" that vend both snacks and drinks are proving to be very popular right now.


  • Determine if any licenses or permits are needed to sell using vending equipment where you plan to locate your machines. Also, some states require that sales tax be paid on products sold through vending machines.  Be sure to check the local laws in your area before you begin.


  • Find a good product supplier for your equipment. This may be part of the package when you pay the vending machine or you may have to purchase the goods on your own. You may want to check the prices in the "big box" stores such as Costco and Sam's Club.  So know how your machines will be stocked before you buy.


  • Location, location, location!  That is not only the mantra of the real estate business, it also counts in the vending machinebusiness.  Do you have the desire and the time to cold call on businesses and locations to place your machines?  If not, look into hiring the services of a reputable vending machine locating service. 


  • Determine if you want to do all the work yourself, or pay someone to do it for you. For a reasonable fee, a vending machine locator will place your equipment in profitable locations. Vending machine placement companies are a great solution for entrepreneurs who don't feel comfortable cold-calling locations to place their machines or for those who just don't have the time.


  • Do you have the time to restock and repair your vending machines?  The equipment may make you money while you sleep, but you will be doing plenty of work while you are awake.



The vending business offers the opportunity for independent individuals to own their own business, work their own hours, and make a decent side income or living.  Can you make money while you sleep?  Without a doubt.  Will you make money without working?  Probably not, but that doesn't mean it isn't a great industry in which to make some good money!


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