Car Wash Vending The biggest advantage to vending in a car wash business is to capture more profits.
Car Wash Vending For the full service car wash facility, traditional vending works by providing a snack and soda machine in the waiting area. You can also stock the machine with car wash products and accessories.
For the self-service car wash, the vending machines will likely sit outside. The AMS Outsider is the best fit for outdoor vending due to the environment (cooling and/or heating) and safety (difficult to break in). It is an all purpose vending machine.
Car Wash Vending Tom Shivers: Hi, I’m Tom Shivers with the Vending Business Show here again with Larry Towner, a vending business consultant. So thanks for being here, Larry.
Larry Towner: Thanks Tom.
Tom Shivers: Tell us a little about your background in vending.
Larry Towner: I have been in vending since 1986, and I just recently sold my business in 2010 and completed the sale as of 2012. It took a while to get rid of it, to get rid of all of it, I sold a piecemeal. But then got into the consulting business. I help people place vending machines, run their vending operations more efficiently, and basically do general business consulting.
Tom Shivers: Now when you think about car washes, what kind of opportunity is there for vending?
Larry Towner: If you’re a car wash operator, probably the biggest advantage to vending is it allows you to capture other sales which equates to other dollars and other profits from one of two, well, a couple of ways. But one way is, is that if you run a a full service car wash, you know the difference between full service and self service Tom? I’m sure you do.
Tom Shivers: I think so. But-
Larry Towner: So if you’re running a full service car wash … Go ahead.
Tom Shivers: I meant to say, go ahead, tell me.
Larry Towner: Oh, tell you what the difference is? Well, a full service car wash is one where the people actually run their car through the tunnel as it were, and in a self service car wash it’s the wand type car washes, where you pull your car into a bay and you spray down your car and do those kinds of things.
Larry Towner: So in this full service facilities, generally because you’re going to get out of your car, you go into a waiting area and they run your car through them, then they do the full service on your car, those are the opportunities where you actually do what we would call traditional vending. You might have a snack machine and a soda machine in the facility inside. That’s a great way to take space that would otherwise be used not as efficiently, to have a magazine rack. Instead of a magazine Rack, put in a snack and a soda machine and, capture some sales from the refreshments because in the meantime, while they’re sitting there waiting for their car, if they’re looking at a pair of machines, it’s very attractive. It might spur some of those add on sales.
Larry Towner: You also can take that snack machine and you can convert it into sales of things like car fresheners or drying towels or any kind of knick knack that you might sell in your facility anyway. But you can have it sell via a vending means instead of having to actually have somebody in that facility.
Larry Towner: In the outside or the self service car wash, one of the big concerns there is going to be the fact that the machines are generally going to sit outside. And one of the big concerns when you place a vending machine outside, and it doesn’t matter what kind of outside vending you’re doing, one of the biggest issues is security. Will the machine get broken into and will they rob you blind? That’s something that actually is … has a specific, we have a specific machine for that. It’s called the AMS Outsider. This machine was designed with a couple of things in mind. One of the other concerns when you’re outside has to do with the environment. Obviously if you’re … We’re here in the south, but if you’re in the south of the north you have heating and cooling issues. If it’s 100 degrees out, the snacks and candy and things that you put in the machine are going to turn into goo. If it’s 20 out, they’re going to freeze. And so the machines, when you do an outside vending, they need to be insulated. They need to have a cooling unit and/or heating unit in the machines. And fortunately the AMS Outsider has that. It has a cooling deck in it. Cooling by, just like in a heat pump into your house, you can heat with it as well, so it can keep the temperature up when it’s cold and it keeps the temperature down when it’s hot.
Larry Towner: So that’s one thing. And the people at AMS also designed this machine specifically for outside vending. They’re very, very aware of the needs of outside vendors. They have case hardened hasps on these, the T-handles are all case hardened. These are things that you’re not going to put a drill into and drill through them. You can, but you’re going to spend 40 drill bits trying to get into them, trust me, I know. Yeah, right?
Larry Towner: And so these are the things that they’ve specifically designed this machine for this kind of vending. Again, with that outside vending location. The beauty of this AMS Outsider is it’s a cooled machine, so you can actually run drinks in it. Our people at A&M Equipment have special spirals and things that allow you to run drinks in that machine. So you can sell drinks, you can sell snacks, you can sell all kinds of car wash accessories, the towels, the car fresheners, all the accessory items that you would want to sell. All can be changed. This machine can be customized to your particular needs and that’s what makes it so special. It becomes an all-purpose vendor instead of just a specific, it’s not item specific, it becomes all-purpose. So that’s why we’re really excited about it.
Tom Shivers: Yeah, it sounds like a good one. Well, thanks for sharing, Larry. Tell us more about what you do.
Larry Towner: Well, we do consulting mostly for the vending and coin-op business. We help people either start new businesses the right way and/or make their current running businesses more profitable. We’re available at firstname.lastname@example.org, now spell it out, at email@example.com.
Tom Shivers: And you’ve been watching Car Wash Vending at the Vending Business Show, a publication of A&M Equipment Sales. More Blogs on the Vending Business Show Hotel Vending