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How to Choose the Best Vending Machine Supplier or Service

How to Choose the Best Vending Machine Supplier or Service

Busy workers and students only have a few minutes between events on their schedule—a long day of meetings, classes, and tasks may limit their ability to grab food. They need a convenient way to get a quick snack or even lunch, so as a thoughtful owner or operator, you’re considering adding a vending machine to your facility. As you begin to research your options online, you may find yourself overwhelmed and wondering, “What should I look for in a vending machine business?” It’s not exactly your everyday purchase, so we’re here to help you consider several important points that could impact your decision on how to choose a vending machine supplier.

1. Consider the Reputation of Potential Suppliers or Service Providers

We often utilize online reviews as a way to steer us toward or away from restaurants, but they’re just as handy for other services and businesses. Reviews can give you insight into what your experience with a vending machine supplier may look like and provide information about their responsiveness, cost, and customer care. A few prime areas to look for reviews include Google and the Better Business Bureau, but you may find them on other platforms such as Yelp. As with anything online, a grain of salt may be required when considering reviews—they may be skewed in a negative direction, as consumers are often more motivated to leave a review after a negative experience than a positive one. At the same time, there are some businesses that provide incentives such as discounts for positive reviews. Note the dates of the reviews; if there are only old reviews from years ago, it may not reflect the current level of service or product quality. If there are a suspiciously high number of reviews all around the same day or a dramatic increase in reviews, there could be a reason. When reading online ratings and comments, look for common themes between them to see if the same issues occurred for many people. For example, if multiple people have commented how quickly a company responded to phone calls, it holds more weight than a single review complaining about never getting a hold of someone. These reviews can help you think of questions to ask a prospective supplier when you start contacting companies.

Finding real-life feedback on vending machine suppliers is another great option. As you interact with your community, keep an eye out for vending machines—and use that opportunity to ask the business or facility what their experience has been like. Getting a reference from someone you’ve met in real life may feel more certain than an online review written in anonymity.

Adjacent to a company’s reputation is their length of time in business. The longer they’ve been around, the longer they’ve had to streamline processes, learn exactly what customers are looking for, and create a superior offering. With 25 years in the business, S Vending Solutions is able to make recommendations and provide solutions backed by a history of experiencing what worked best for past clients.

2. Obtain Multiple Vending Service Proposals

Getting the best vending machine service for your company and employees is important. When comparing vending companies, ask them to develop a vending proposal that outlines the exact vending equipment that will be placed at your facility, all the services provided, and the consumable products they will be selling from the machine as well as the cost of those products. Be sure the proposal explains their service frequency and how they will respond when repairs or general maintenance is required. If there are any fees or contracts needed, those should be outlined in the proposal as well.

3. Understand What Type of Vending Machines You Are Being Provided

All vending service companies do not provide the same types of vending machines to all businesses. Many companies will use older and less equipped vending machines that severely limit the number and types of products your employees will have the opportunity to enjoy. Vending service providers that use newer equipment with the latest technology will offer your employees a greater variety of options including a menu that can  change more frequently. Newer machines are also equipped with a guaranteed product delivery system called I-Vend Technology. This feature improves vending reliability and cuts down on service calls.

When looking for a vending machine supplier near you, be sure the equipment provided has all the payment systems available today. The most modern machines like those we carry at SVS allow the end user to use cash, coin, debit, and credit cards as well as digital payments like Apple and Google Pay to purchase products. Older, outdated equipment will likely only allow customers to use coins and cash.

4. Make Sure Customer Service Is Their Priority

One of the biggest complaints from businesses who’ve worked with vending machine services in the past is that they can never get a hold of anyone, and no one calls them back. You don’t have time to spend waiting on hold or hoping to get a return call. If your vending machine is malfunctioning or you need assistance, being able to quickly communicate with your vending service can make for a much better day. The vending machine company you work with should make it a priority to communicate with you on a weekly basis.  SVS places a priority on regular and professional communication with each manager at all our vending locations.  Whether it’s standing check-ins, a service request, or you want to change what’s stocked in the machine, it’s important to feel like you’re being taken care of and listened to regularly.  This type of communication allows us to better serve our client base and ensures that small issues do not grow into major problems.  Receiving top-quality customer service can be a major deciding factor in which vending machine supplier to choose.

If you’re a small business, ask the supplier how they triage care of their customers. Does the number of vending machines or the size of the organization dictate how quickly they respond? SVS treats all of their customers as priorities—whether you have one machine or a fleet of them, we make sure your needs are addressed. We make it a goal to respond to all calls the same day they’re received.

How a company chooses to interact with you is another deciding factor. Are they easily accessible through multiple methods including phone, email, and text, or are you required to call a central operator? Are there multiple people you can contact or just one? Once you get into contact with someone, are they able to make decisions or do they have to defer that to someone else? Are they able to give you a timeline for resolution to your issue? At SVS we empower our people to make the changes our customers require as quickly as possible. They do not have to ask a manager or supervisor to change a product or alter a menu. They can work on equipment if necessary and keep parts on hand to fix many issues in the field. If they requested change or issue can’t be resolved immediately, they provide you with a timeline so that you know when to expect a resolution and how it will be achieved. This type of customer service should be the expectation of your new vending service provider.

5. Ask About Additional Services Such as Maintenance and Setup

The worst part of buying or obtaining a new product is putting it together. When’s the last time you ordered furniture and looked forward to building it? Vending machines could require extensive setup, especially if there are technical features such as digital payment. A supplier who will handle those aspects on your behalf may win out over a comparable one who would charge extra.

Any kind of equipment needs regular maintenance to stay in good condition, and vending machines are no different. If you aren’t familiar with how to deal with the inner workings of a vending machine, odds are you won’t want to perform maintenance yourself—and who has time for that? This is where a supplier may set themselves apart. If regular maintenance is included in your agreement, it takes something off your plate. Better yet, if the company also handles all the inventory and restocking, they’ll ensure your machine never runs out of your favorite chips. No last-minute runs to Costco to fill the vending machine you hadn’t realized was bordering on barren.

6. Ask About Financing Options

Wondering if vending machine suppliers near you will let you finance a unit of your own? The answer is yes—but only some. A lot of facilities don’t have the money upfront to buy a machine, or they don’t want to spend a lot of money at once. Being able to finance a vending solution creates more opportunities for organizations, businesses, and schools to obtain a machine they can self-manage if that’s their preferred setup. A new machine could cost several thousand dollars depending on its functions, so financing helps to offset that burden on your bank account.

Choosing the best vending machine service or supplier will come down to what your priorities are, but all the factors above should be considered. Take the time to do thorough research, have consultations, and consider your options before committing. The ideal solution will be to partner with a company like SVS where you have a wide range of options to choose from and where top-notch customer service is valued by the staff.

If you’re hungrily searching for “vending machine service near me” and you’re in the Nashville area, SVS is the experienced provider you need. Request a commitment-free quote by emailing us at or by contacting us directly through our website.

Steve Caldwell
Steve Caldwell

Steve Caldwell is the owner and CEO of S Vending Solutions. As a former vending equipment salesman and later the National Sales Manager for PBS Vending Services from 2001-2008, Steve learned the industry inside and out. In 2018, Steve started his own vending company and quickly established routes in Nashville, Knoxville, and West Tennessee, expanding from there. As his personal routes grew he decided to sell his company and help new and existing vending operators market their businesses. Steve currently sells both new and used vending equipment and specializes in helping new operators start and grow their vending companies. He has become a certified Service Entity for the USI/Wittern brand of equipment.

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[…] Vending machine servicing is a part of our package as well. Our machines are inspected and fine-tuned at regular intervals so you don’t have to add caring for another piece of equipment to your responsibilities. We use high-quality machines that include iVend Guaranteed Delivery so stuck snacks are a rarity—but we’re only a phone call away whenever you need us. […]

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