If you’ve looked in to starting up a vending business, you know that there are several options out there. We have done some research for you on the three main ways to get started. The first is to buy a vending route from a current vending business owner. The second is to start from scratch by purchasing the vending machines and finding your own locations. The third is to purchase a vending franchise. Let us break down the pros and cons for these three options.
Buy a Vending Route
There are many advertisements on Craigslist and elsewhere for owners in your area who are selling their vending business. You can also go through a vending broker to help you find a route to purchase. You would essentially be paying the current owner to take over all their vending machines. You would get their vending locations. The daily operations for that vending business would be your responsibility. You wouldn’t have to purchase your own vending machines. You also wouldn’t have to find locations in most cases. Some of the current owners offer you training and all the associated product and tools that they have purchased for their vending business.
One downside to this option, is that you may be getting older vending machines or locations that are less than ideal. Why is the owner selling his vending business? You’d want to look into that. You would also want to look at the sales data for the machines and locations to determine if this would be a good investment. Talk with the employees at each location and see how the machines are running and if there have been any issues. Check on age and condition of the machines that are offered.
This can be a great option but you will really want to do your due diligence in inspecting the route and the machines. If you purchase the route and have nothing but problems with machines and locations, you wouldn’t really be saving anything.
Start from Scratch
The second option for you to get started in the vending business, is to do everything yourself. This can be the least expensive way to get started, but it will require a lot of time and effort. You would want to research and find your perfect vending machines, locations and do all the business set up.
You would want to find a vending machine distributor who could give you great machines for a low price. You may even be able to find a vending distributor who does training and could train you in the set-up and operation of your machine. It would be good to start scouting around at local businesses in your area with flyers and product samples to try to interest possible locations for your machines.
The responsibility for the purchasing of products for your machines and for setting up, stocking and every day operations for the vending machines at each location would be on you. It would help if you have business or sales experience to go with this option, but it’s not essential.
Starting your vending business in this way is like building a new house vs. buying a used house. You get to choose all the features and locations for your new vending business, just as you would for your new home. This affordable option can be a great way to get into the vending business.
Buy a Franchise
The last option we’ve included is to purchase a Vending Franchise. This option is definitely the most expensive way to get into the vending business, but it also offers the most help and support. You would partner with a company that offers machines, locations, training, business setup information, product selection options, and specific business model. The company will sell you machines that feature their brand. They would also require you to fill the machines with the types of products they would like you to sell.
You would have a turnkey vending business with the large initial investment. They have a large sales team that works to help you locate your vending machines and you will have support from the franchise team if you have any issues. You may be required to pay out ongoing fees or royalties for this continued support. Be sure to ask a lot of questions when you’re looking into these franchises. Beware of this option as it sounds good, but too often we see the machines located in poor locations or never located at all.
It all Depends on You
If you are interested in starting a vending business, there are several ways to do so. You have to research each option for yourself and decide which way would best serve you. We are here to help you make that choice. Check out our other blog posts for more information on the vending business and the options that are available to you.
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