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Location, location, location

If you want to start a vending machine business, you need a location.  Your life will be easiest if you place machines in areas you already frequent.  You'll make the most money if you place your machines in super popular, very busy, high traffic spots. 

The following questions will help guide you to right location: What's the coolest area in your town?  Where do people go to have fun?  What places are open and busy long hours?   What popular businesses  have space for a vending machine?  Where do you want to go every single week?  What businesses do you like and want to promote?  Whose customers can YOU satisfy?

Got some ideas?

Now, go to those places.  Count the bodies. Scope the layout.  Don't expect a business to move a bunch of stuff around to accommodate your machine, but do keep an eye out.  If the juke box was moved just an inch to the left and the photobooth was rotated a tad to the right, could you make a vending machine fit?  Consider spaces that are not currently generating revenue, like areas where extra chairs are stacked or where free newspapers and fliers are distributed.  Look by the bathroom.  A nook near the bathroom is vending machine gold.

Look for venues that have events.  Bars/businesses that have a lot of events are typically run by people who are community-minded, like to try new things and appreciate fun.  These people are  more likely to be open to your business idea.  Meet these people.  Places that have pinball, pool, photobooths etc.  are another good place to start.  Venues like this already have experience working with coin-op businesses so they may be inclined to work with you.  Bear in mind, however, that pool, pinball and other game operators usually pay their host bars a 50% of sales  so venue owners may initially expect a similar  payout from you.  Be ready to explain that revenue share doesn’t work for your inventory-heavy business. Unlike game operators, your primary operating expense is purchasing and packaging inventory, something game operators don’t deal with at all.  

Lastly, get a mileage-tracking app.  I use MileIQ & like it, but there are other options.  All the miles you drive scouting locations, shopping for vending machines and inventory can be written off as business deductions.  

For more, yes MORE, info on locations and everything else you need to know about starting a creative vending machine business, buy my course Creative Vending Revolution.

Best of luck! Creative vending rules!!

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