Get new vending  locations

How to Get a Vending Machine Contract and Make Deals

Planning to contract new business locations for your vending machine business? Here’s how to get a vending machine contract ready.

September 18, 2023


The success of your vending business depends on your ability to search and secure great locations that can guarantee steady traffic for vending machines. A business owner already understands that their spot is a valuable asset. To strike a deal and start a vending machine operations on the right foot, you will need to explain what they stand to gain.

Great deal-making focuses on finding win-win outcomes - the vending machine industry is the same. Besides ensuring that you get a great deal for your business bank account, you also want to optimize for the business owner. Indeed, when you start a vending machine business, it is in your best interest that they are satisfied because then they won’t be easily swayed to replace your machine with a shinier one when another vendor comes calling.

In this step-by-step guide, you will learn how to get a contract and how to make deals that account for the property owner’s perceptions, expectations, and needs. And ultimately you'll get a step closer to reaching opportune net sales, passive income, and track revenue far down the line.

Preparing a Pitch for a Vending Machine Contract

Three main parties must get a great deal out of your vending machine business: customers, the machine locations (business owners), and yourself. When you search for spots for placing vending machines, you must deliberately look for establishments that can benefit from having your vending machines or full scope of your service on their premises. Schools for example can benefit from a snack vending machine or even a book vending machine, and it's your job to recognize those opportunities.

Like a pro salesman, you will lead with the benefits that make it a no-brainer for them to enter into the vending machine contract. Below are some of the benefits you can highlight.

They Will Record an Increase in Foot Traffic on the Locations

For any retail business, including your vending operation, higher foot traffic means higher net sales (go check our profit calculator). Your ought-to-be successful vending machine business will benefit from the location’s existing food traffic. You should also make it clear to the business owner that their business stands to benefit from the traffic that will be coming to the site specifically for the, let's say, snack and beverage vending machines.

An Additional Value Proposition to Retain Customers

Adding a vending machine to a brick-and-mortar will significantly improve customer retention metrics - aside from your net sales. In a commoditized industry or market, offering a superior experience is a competitive advantage. Just as you would be loyal to a store because the attendants are friendlier, some people can be loyal to a business because they can grab drinks and snacks in an office space, or on their way out.

It Can Help Improve Employee Welfare Significantly

Vending devices - such as snack machine - allow employees to access drink items and snacks conveniently without leaving the workplace. Since you will be taking care of product sourcing and restocking, the employer can enjoy this benefit without overhead costs or committing manhours to the day-to-day operations of machines. 

Vending Machines Require Minimal Human Maintenance

One of the objections you may encounter when sending a proposal to business owners is that they don’t have the time to monitor or maintain a vending equipment. This is an easy objection to overcome since, aside from product restocking, vending machines require almost no human maintenance.

Further, you should communicate to the owner that you are offering service as an independent contractor and that you are responsible for all required maintenance tasks.

How to Get a Vending Machine Contract: the Proposal

The process of writing a proposal will help you think through the direction you want to take when you start a vending machine business. It will help you clarify aspects of the business vending machine entrepreneurs overlook otherwise. To the businesses, a proposal communicates that you are serious about the existing vending machine business and gives them clarity on what they stand to gain from having the machine on their property.

Write the Proposal Using Best Practices

Take the time to do your own market research and write the proposal using best practices. It should consist of

  • A cover letter
  • A title page
  • An about us page
  • Benefits to the owner
  • Maintenance, and who is responsible for it (you)
  • Footprint (check federal and local laws)
  • Case studies, especially if you have other locations that are doing well
  • How many machines you operate
  • Available product selection
  • Something interesting or special features can be placed on a back page

Aside from establishing the mechanics of your vending machine business, the goal of the proposal is to sell location owners the benefits of having your service on their properties. You need to prove your businesses are a good match. Every owner - especially office buildings owners - will want to know what’s in it for them. Here is a sample proposal template you can use for inspiration. 

How to Contact Location Owners

Securing great locations is about selling both yourself and your vending machine business. People do business with people they like. In the absence of a vending locator, you will have to hit the road yourself. To make the process efficient, build a list of potential places in your area with their contact information. We can build such a list for you - find more information here.

 You want to establish a good first impression when making a pitch. To achieve this, do the following:

Stand Out From The Rest of Vending Machine Entrepreneurs

  • Meet the owner in person. Phone calls are great but in-person meetings are way better for building stronger relationships. Visiting a place and talking to the decision-maker in person gives weight to your proposal and increases the chances that they take you up on the offer. Remember, you're not just there to collect money.
  • Bring a proposal and business card. A proposal detailing your small business plan, established business model, and strategy and what the owner stands to gain can help you close the deal much faster. Consider carrying a business card as well.

Have the Vending Machine Contract Ready

You should have a copy of a written contract with you when visiting your target market prospects. A contract spells out your obligations and those of the location owner. When writing the contract, cover the following:

  • Your LLC will own, run, and maintain the machines
  • The duration of the contract - start and end dates
  • That all vending profits except for the agreed monthly fee ( comission rates ) are due to you
  • The specific amount (monthly fee) you will pay to the location owner (a fixed rate or a percentage of revenue or profits)
  • The date the payment to the owner is due
  • That the owner shall provide the electricity required to run the machines
  • Limitations of liability in case of damages
  • How to resolve disputes in case of a disagreement
  • That you're (not) using refurbished machines
  • Terms and conditions for the termination of the contract.

The contract is legally binding. It is vital, therefore, that you agree to only the obligations you can fulfill. If you're in need of a vending machine contract template, we got you covered. It's a simple, tried-and-true blueprint you can borrow to make your own contract.

Final Thoughts

You must build a great relationship with the location owner from the start. Reaching a deal where the owner benefits from the arrangement as much as your net sales do will make it easy for you to scale your vending machine business. You can rest easy knowing that the owner has all the incentives to keep an eye on your vending machines and retain it on their property for as long as possible.

We offer service to search vending machine operators find great locations and boost net sales by giving them an extensive list of all the prime spots in their city where vending machines would do great. Learn how it works here.

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