Cashless Vending From an Operator

Cashless Vending From an Operator  As a new comer to cashless, you’re company must have decided to wait before making this investment. Why did you wait to get into cashless until this year?

Were you getting requests from customers to have cashless?

Did you develop a plan before making this investment?

How did you decide which machines to equip with cashless capability?

Did that include hot beverage machines too?

Listen to the podcast at Vending Market Watch as Lisa Leuchter of SnackWorks, Inc shares answers and their experience. Cashless Vending From an Operator


Cashless Vending From an Operator  Speaker 1: Welcome to the Vending Technology Watch podcast. We’re here today with Lisa Leuchter, the Vice President of Snackworks in Bradenton, Florida. We’re here today to talk about cashless vending. Snackworks has more than 1,000 machines, and the company was founded in 1990. One of the reasons I wanted to talk to Lisa about this is her company has had a fairly recent entry into the cashless world.

Speaker 1: Lisa, my question is as a newcomer to Cashless Vending From an Operator   your company must have decided to wait before making this investment. I’m curious to know why you chose to invest in cashless this year.

Lisa Leuchter: Well, as a smaller local vendor, we’re very aware of cashless, and we’re very attuned to it, and, of course, it has a cost to it for the operator. So, we kept our ear to the ground and really listened to our customers on a regular basis and talked to many of them about cashless, and as we felt it became a more prominent potential issue for customers, we seriously started to look into implementing it. But we were still on the fence. This past fall, I believe it was in the fall, when USA Technologies implemented their jump-start program, it made it easy to make that commitment to implement cashless in our equipment.

Speaker 1: Okay. Now, were you getting requests from customers to have cashless?

Lisa Leuchter: Very few, but we did proactively talk to our customers about cashless. It didn’t seem to be a hot button but, like all things, information grows and customers become more and more aware of options that are available out there, and we always strive to be on the forefront of what we do with our customers, and at the right time we implement new strategies.

Speaker 1: Okay. Now, did you develop a plan before making this investment?

Lisa Leuchter: We did. We developed a plan ourselves initially talking about it, and the customers that we felt would be best to start with, and we found that even with our plan there was still more to learn. So, once we committed to USA Technologies, we spent some time with Jim Turner from USA Technologies and did a full business analysis of our customer type by industry, and then looking at each individual machine, and then the bank of machines those individual machines resided in, in order to fine-tune the locations that we would initially install the cashless with.

Speaker 1: Okay. How did you decide which machines to equip with cashless capability?

Lisa Leuchter: Initially we looked at the industries that historically are known to have the highest usage, the highest acceptance of cashless. Armed with that, we then looked at our highest velocity equipment. Depending on your own personal strategy, you could look at turns, you could look at revenue. And then we had to ourselves make the decision that when we decided on equipment we wanted to put cashless in, to also include, or not, every piece of equipment in that entire bank. We chose to include it in all equipment, even if an individual machine wouldn’t meet our overall criteria.

Speaker 1: Oh. Did that include hot beverage machines too?

Lisa Leuchter: If in the bank, yes, and food, if in the bank, yes.

Speaker 1: All right. Well, I think that’s enough for the first segment of this series Cashless Vending From an Operator  .  Next time we meet we will talk about what some of the results have been to the cashless program to date. Thank you, Lisa.  More Vending Business Blogs  Vending Machine License: Is It Something You Need?

Vending Industry and Nutrition

Vending Industry and Nutrition U.S. Schools have been fighting obesity for six years now despite the financial hardship it has brought on and the vending industry has supported this cause – one example is NAMA’s Fit Pick program.

Vending Industry and Nutrition These wellness issues have been difficult for vending operators to deal with but necessary for long-term planning and changing consumer perception of vending.

The US Department of Agriculture is pressing for new rules for vending machines under the National School Lunch and Breakfast programs.  Vending operators would do well to lead the charge in consumer perceptions of vending, rather than following it.

It has been six years since U.S. schools began removing soda from vending machines. This was a controversial move. Some observers claimed it would create financial hardships for schools but would not change kids’ eating habits.

The removal of soda and other products has certainly created financial hardships for schools. Obesity rates among young people remain high. However, this past week, the journal, Pediatrics, reports that laws that curb the sales of “junk” food and sweetened drinks at school may play a role in slowing childhood obesity.

The vending and beverage industries have largely supported these efforts. They have done so in recognition of the seriousness of the obesity problem and in the interest of being good corporate citizens. The beverage industry has voluntarily removed soda from many schools. The vending industry, led by the National Automatic Merchandising Association (NAMA), has promoted wellness through its voluntary Fit Pick program.

Many vending operators have supported these efforts because they recognize they need to be health advocates. But from a profitability standpoint, it would be an understatement to say the wellness programs have been a challenge. At a time when the industry can least afford it, many school accounts have become less profitable.

While the wellness initiatives have been a tough pill to swallow, vending operators need to consider these efforts within the context of their long-term objectives. A key objective has been the need to change consumer perception of vending.

NAMA has invested heavily in a public awareness campaign to improve the vending industry’s image. The campaign has largely focused on promoting new vending technology. Research indicates consumers are viewing vending more favorably, particularly younger consumers. One reason is that the wellness activities are changing the traditional association of vending machines as purveyors of “junk” food.

Today’s younger generation does not see vending machines filled with soda at school. They see machines offering more water and other noncarbonated beverages. They see snack machines with more baked chips and whole grain snacks. These students are tomorrow’s consumers.

Read more exciting articles  Take Over A Vending Route Or Start Your Own?

Read the full story: Nutrition Rules Hurt Short Term, But Ultimately Help Improve Vending’s Public Image  

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