Posted on: November 22, 2022 |

There are more types of vending machines available than ever before. As technology has progressed, vending machines have become more advanced as well, and can provide a variety of different products. Consumers’ needs have changed, too. So, how can you match your location with your vending machine?

How to Match Your Location With Your Vending Machine

Any business owner knows the importance of the right location. For vending machines, it’s even more important to find the right location. But even if you have a location with lots of traffic, it’s also important to consider what type of vending machine will work best. Just like different brick-and-mortar stores work better in different locations, so do different vending machines.

Different consumers have different priorities. Also, different areas have different risks and opportunities. All of this, and much more, can affect how interested your customers are in your vending machine products, how much they’ll buy, and how much they’ll pay.

Let’s take a look at some of the common types of vending machines, and which locations they’re likely to perform best in.

Ice and Water Vending

  • Locations: Busy commuter roads, docks or marinas, popular parks
  • Nearby stores: gas stations, car washes, factories, recreational areas

Ice and water vending machines are unique because they satisfy a basic human need; water. For many workers, ice is also essential to keep perishable foods cold throughout the day. For this reason, one of the best locations for an ice and water vending machine is along a commuter route in a large or medium-sized city or suburb. Commuters heading towards their jobs at manufacturing plants, construction sites, and similar locations can fill up their coolers and water bottles on their way to work.

There are other situations where ice and water vending machines are helpful, too. Customers might fill up a cooler with ice at a beach or park, fishing boats might need ice to keep their catch fresh, and food trucks might fill up a cooler throughout the day.

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Coffee Vending

  • Locations: Office buildings, truck stops, bus stops
  • Nearby stores: Government offices, insurance agencies, transportation sites

Though coffee isn’t technically a necessity to life like water, many coffee drinkers might disagree. Nowadays, coffee vending might mean a hot cup of regular coffee, a cappuccino, latte, or even a cold can of coffee. These types of vending machines are ideal for people who work long hours early in the morning or very late at night. This can apply to many different workers, from office workers to retail workers to truck drivers and more. Coffee vending machines might be located at or near their workplaces, or at key areas along an early-morning commuter route, like a bus station or metro station.

Health Food Vending

  • Locations: fitness clubs, bus stops, business lobbies
  • Nearby stores: health food stores, vegetarian restaurants, smoothie shops

Typically, we’re used to seeing vending machines filled with candy, chips, and soda. However, many consumers are becoming more health-conscious. At the same time, many health-conscious consumers also have a lot of demands on their time, making it difficult to find healthy food. This has led to an increase in health food vending.

While snack food vending is mainly based on convenience, health food vending is based on both convenience and intent. So, health food vending machines can be successful in some of the same locations as snack food vending, such as bus stops and waiting rooms. However, it’s helpful to look at surrounding businesses to see if the local customers are likely to buy healthy foods (and, usually, pay a bit more). Vending machines placed in or near fitness clubs, health food stores, or vegetarian restaurants may work well with health foods.

Some health food vending machines are refrigerated to preserve perishable vegetables, sandwiches, smoothies, or similar items. However, others are simply regular vending machines filled with healthier foods, like granola bars, dried fruit, protein bars, or vitamin water. If you notice your snack food vending sales declining, you might experiment with healthier foods to see if your usual customers or their preferences have changed.

Snack Food Vending

  • Locations: bus stations, hospital waiting rooms, business lobbies
  • Nearby stores: convenience stores, gas stations, laundromats

Snack food vending is a classic choice. It’s the most popular and the most familiar type of vending machine. And, though vending machines are changing, snack vending is an easy choice, and can work in many different locations.

As previously mentioned, snack food vending is mainly based on convenience. Customers are waiting, or they’re on-the-go, and they’re hungry. For this reason, snack food vending machines are ideally placed at transit locations, like bus stations, busy waiting rooms, like hospitals, or other business lobbies.

Matching your location to your vending machine is one of the best ways to improve your sales. If you have a location in mind for your vending machine, contact us. We’ll help you vet your location and set you up for success in the vending business.