January 10, 2023

5 Things You MUST Know Before Starting A Vending Machine Business



What happens when two college students buy a used vending machine to start a passive income business? In this video, you’ll learn the good, the bad, and the ugly of starting a vending machine business as well as important tips for profitability.

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In the summer of 2019, my college roommate and I started a vending machine business. Our goal was to acquire 10 locations by 2020, yet owning this kind of business comes with many obstacles that we did not see coming.. In this video, I tell you steps to open your vending machine business, I give you advice on starting vending machine business, I tell you the best vending machines, and what you shouldn’t do when starting a vending machine business. THIS IS EVERY QUESTION BEGINNERS HAVE!

The 5 Things You MUST Know Before Starting A Vending Machine Business

1. Have a location before buying your machine
2. Analyze your target market and don’t buy a snack machine for a place a drink machine would be better
3. Realize you’ll need $500 – $1000 in startup capital
4. Don’t expect passive income, this is active work
5. Scaling is harder than expected, a lot of labor is involved

We made about $90 in total sales, but that was over 9 months of our machine being operational. This was NOT profitable, and we actually ended up losing a lot of money when our snacks expired.

After we realized that this business was NOT passive, we had to come to a tough choice. As students, it was just not the best use of our time and it required a large amount of capital to scale this business. So what did our business do?

Luckily vending machines hold their value really well! So a year later from our initial investment, we sold our machine. The great thing is we recouped all our costs and even sold the machine for a slight profit of $75.

Most of the unsold and expired snacks were able to be eaten by us and did not go to waste. So, all in all, we were slightly cash flow positive, with our machine still holding its value at the time of selling.

If you’re interested in starting this business, be sure to do your due diligence before buying a machine! This can be a fun and lucrative business if done correctly! Personally, I would rather spend my free time working on side hustles that can be done online and that lean more towards passive income.

Thanks for watching!

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