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In defense of vendstar


handysnack

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Ive seen a lot of threads bashing the machines entirely, I believe they have their place.

 

I have about 50 vendstars in the field,

 

I just bought 63 for the low price of $11 each, great condition.

 

That being said these things are great as low volume machines and scouts.  I've had one or two broken chute doors, but overall up to $20 gross a month the machine works without issue.  So my two major points are.

 

1. They're dirt cheap now, ROI is huge and no problems at a low volume.

 

2. If you didn't recognize your location as a gravy location before placing a vendstar you always have the option of replacing the equipment and placing the vendstar elsewhere.

 

I have a total of 180 machines, mostly vendstar, total of 50 machines placed.  What other way could I accumulate so many machines so quickly with a small budget? 

 

It's the same quarter, stop tying to be fancy for the sake of being fancy, why waste a $100 machine when the location grosses $15 monthly?

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I don't know that too many of us are "fancy for the sake of being fancy" in our machine choices.

Some just have different ways of approaching their business start-up.

 

Pros in every industry know that it's not wise to sacrifice reliability for the sake of saving money on the front end.

Putting cost over reliability is a mistake that can doom your business.

This is why you don't see the really good mechanics and carpenters unloading cheap unreliable tools off their trucks when they go to work.

 

The machines on your route represent you even more so than your business card.

If small-time and low-budget is the impression you want to give. Then go for it.
Set your route with whatever equipment you deem appropriate for your needs/goals.

 

But, there are those that are willing to invest in better quality equipment from the get-go.

And they don't do so because they want to be fancy.

They do it because (like good mechanics and carpenters) they know that if they are going to be in business long-term, they will need to buy the quality equipment eventually anyway...so, they may as well start with it.

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I have to say that in all my locating of machines I have never had a owner or manager tell me that they only allow such and such machine and not vendstar or ssf kind of machines. They let you set a machine on how you sell yourself and your equipment that determines if you get to set your machines or not. As long as you keep them looking nice and working they are not going to know the difference in the machines. They know that there will be trouble with any machine, so as long as you keep them fixed their happy. As too the one statement, I don't see many gumball wheels on e bay for any machine.

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I have to say that in all my locating of machines I have never had a owner or manager tell me that they only allow such and such machine and not vendstar or ssf kind of machines. They let you set a machine on how you sell yourself and your equipment that determines if you get to set your machines or not. As long as you keep them looking nice and working they are not going to know the difference in the machines. They know that there will be trouble with any machine, so as long as you keep them fixed their happy. As too the one statement, I don't see many gumball wheels on e bay for any machine.

 

 

 

Most location owners couldn't tell you the brand of machine in their establishment no matter how long the equipment has been in there.

And they probably couldn't tell a crap machine from a top-of-the line machine.

So it's unrealistic to expect them to tell a vendor what BRAND of equipment they allow and don't allow in their business.

 

However, if they DID know about bulk machines and if you HAD given them a choice between Vendstar and NW/Oak machines, most of them would choose the Oak or NW.

How can I be so sure?

Because it's what most TVF bulk vendors would choose and there's no denying they know bulk machines.

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Your still talking apples and oranges. Its not the quality of the machine its what the vendor can afford to get started or to expand. An 11 dollar vendstar is by far a better investment when your new than a fifty dollar oak /nw. The new vendor needs all the advice we can give them, and telling them that for future reference oak/ nw/a&a are the better machines to go with is fine in my op. To tell them not to but the vendstar to start is not right because everybody has a budget and why go in for the best if you don't know if your going to like this business or not.

As far as us bulk people go yes we know what machines we each like and yes the owner or managers don't know our business as we don't know theirs.

Every mechanic and carpenter I have known start out with used tools and cheap new tools. their selling their knowledge of the trade not their tools. The finished results is what brings their customers back too them. When they make a decent living then they invest in more expensive equip.

I believe that is why you find so many good deals on e bay and c l is because the fancy talking sales people make their marks believe that the only way to be in this business is to invest all your money in machines then have nothing left to locate and stock them after they have purchased. Then the machines sit in storage until the owners are feed up and sell them.

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The new vendor needs all the advice we can give them, and telling them that for future reference oak/ nw/a&a are the better machines to go with is fine in my op. To tell them not to but the vendstar to start is not right because everybody has a budget and why go in for the best if you don't know if your going to like this business or not.

 

I haven't seen where anyone told new vendors "not to buy a Vendstar to start" anywhere on this thread.

But, I have on other threads if that's what you are referring to.

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I have Beavers, Northwestern, Oak, Eagle, A&A, Routemaster, 1800 and yes, Vendstar.  While Beavers are my personal favorite; Oaks, being second, everyone will use what works for them.  Yes, the top quality, metal machines cost more; and the plastic Vendstars are inexpensive, I think they all have their place.  I wouldn't place a Vendstar in a high traffic premium location; but at the same token, I wouldn't place a Beaver in an auto repair shop.  I guess that's what's great about having a variety of options to choose from!

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The point is that you will eventually lose every location you ever had. Buying a machine that will last a long time and work well under all conditions makes sense.

These threads always end up the same. Lets come back to this in two years and see who is hiring a route driver and who isn't.

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I haven't seen where anyone told new vendors "not to buy a Vendstar to start" anywhere on this thread.

But, I have on other threads if that's what you are referring to.

Yes I was talking about all threads on this subject. I just see so many people trash different machines. I agree with gagesvending. Also I know of a lot of influencial people that have started out on a shoestring and became very rich because of it. I use the most trashed machines on here. v s and u turn and I haven't lost an acct. yet. Sorry, I ran all my replies together. 

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If you try and use Vendstars in higher volume locations you will definitely be paying more for the machine over the long term due to the broken parts (Of course you dont HAVE to replace the chute doors).  But if you get a great deal on them to start with then you should be in good shape for a while.  I agree with Gages in that Vendstars are useful in certain specific situations but other machines (Oak, NW, Beaver, etc.) are a better fit for the long haul.

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Here we go again.

- Vendstars are junk & like most junk, their cheap. They're basically an honor box with a stand and coin mech.

- Any savings will be short-lived. Get used to hearing ' the kids were getting free candy" and 'here you go, this fell off your machine" (if your lucky) and "we decided we dont want this here anymore".

- They are not only a bad reflection on the operators that use them, but on the whole bulk vending industry as well.

- Other than unreliable vendors, Vendstars and the problems they cause have probably been responsible for burning more bulk vending locations than any other machine (ashland, ameri vend, xyz, ssf, lypc, 1 800, you name it)

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Here we go again.

- Vendstars are junk & like most junk, their cheap. They're basically an honor box with a stand and coin mech.

- Any savings will be short-lived. Get used to hearing ' the kids were getting free candy" and 'here you go, this fell off your machine" (if your lucky) and "we decided we dont want this here anymore".

- They are not only a bad reflection on the operators that use them, but on the whole bulk vending industry as well.

- Other than unreliable vendors, Vendstars and the problems they cause have probably been responsible for burning more bulk vending locations than any other machine (ashland, ameri vend, xyz, ssf, lypc, 1 800, you name it)

You should see my face when my oldest vendstar location is 3 years old and in an auto repair shop grossing ~$12 a month only serviced on a 12 week cycle with zero complaints or breakage and the machine only cost me $25.  Sometimes they can be fantastic.  I've only removed them when the location turned out to be a high volume location.  I just removed one that survived a $90 gross and put in a terminator, they love that machine to death.

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The point is that you will eventually lose every location you ever had. Buying a machine that will last a long time and work well under all conditions makes sense.

These threads always end up the same. Lets come back to this in two years and see who is hiring a route driver and who isn't.

I would love to reach that level, I think a nice rack with possibly a counter or a vendesign would be the only circumstances I'd allow that, I don't have much experience in that yet, but I can tell you I can't afford it at the moment.  What I can do is build a business with a low startup cost using vendstars that make money and use the profits and my own income to build up to better equipment. 

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You should see my face when my oldest vendstar location is 3 years old and in an auto repair shop grossing ~$12 a month

 

I don't know what your face looks like when you collect at that shop...but, I'd guess it's a look of disappointment considering the location is averaging a monthly gross of only $4 per selection. $12 a month out of a triple is pretty poor even if you are servicing quarterly.

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I guess this thread shows what we have to do in our spare time. Some bashing vendstar , some u turn, some lypc, some ssf and then some of us standing up for all of them. As long as the people are happy with what they have I can't see why raise such a ruckus about it.

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I guess this thread shows what we have to do in our spare time. Some bashing vendstar , some u turn, some lypc, some ssf and then some of us standing up for all of them. As long as the people are happy with what they have I can't see why raise such a ruckus about it.

 

I think everyone's intentions here are good.  The professionals that have been working in this industry a long time may have used these machines in the past and decided that they aren't going to help you make a living in this business, based on their experience.  There are probably also some that have seen people start up small routes of these machines, which was short lived.  I agree, it gets a little ridiculous to argue about the same things time and time again, but I believe it's all to help others with good intentions; and not to put people down.

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I don't know what your face looks like when you collect at that shop...but, I'd guess it's a look of disappointment considering the location is averaging a monthly gross of only $4 per selection. $12 a month out of a triple is pretty poor even if you are servicing quarterly.

At this point in my career a $36 stop within my cluster of machines is a stop I'm happy to make on a quarterly basis.  I still have a vendstar that does $6 a month that I refuse to remove just because it's right next door to a premium stop, the five extra minutes it takes is worth the $18 on my visit. 

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I don't know what your face looks like when you collect at that shop...but, I'd guess it's a look of disappointment considering the location is averaging a monthly gross of only $4 per selection. $12 a month out of a triple is pretty poor even if you are servicing quarterly.

 Sherlock,

 

Just curious if this was a single head machine doing $12 a month would you think it was still a poor location?

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 Sherlock,

 

Just curious if this was a single head machine doing $12 a month would you think it was still a poor location?

 

Good question...but, it's hard to say.

Other factors like product type/cost and charity or commission play a role in determining whether or not I'd consider $12 for a 1-selection location a poor location.

Generally speaking $12 per selection monthly avg is not too bad for a charity gb single, for example...but, if you change the variables I mention, then that might change my opinion of the location.

 

I would also add: A single earning $4 per month is a poor location no matter what factors you take into consideration. And the business in question is earning $12 for 3 selections...that's $4 per "single" selection if you do the math...that's poor.  Were the vendor using a brand of machine I recommended, he/she would not be forced to choose between leaving the location or offering 3 selections to a business that doesn't deserve that many choices.  He/she would have the 3rd option of breaking that set-up down into a double (a single would be even better for such a low earning spot) and using the spare head(s) at other locations. While leaving the best selling product at the original location would minimize the drop in sales...he/she may even find the average would remain at/about $12 per month out of that single just like they were earning out of the triple. So they would have gained a couple of new locations without having to buy new machines AND without sacrificing much (if any) of the earnings in the original spot.

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I will chime in on this one as well,  with experience

You can go ahead and use the cheapest crap machine made and secure a location.

crap is not limited to just vendstar there is a lot of crap out there.

 

and dream of big dollars...

 

but its not going to happen...

 

 

Rule 1: 

Customers are germaphobes..

those nasty gray machines reek of old and the first thing people think is how old is the stuff inside? 

if the outside looks this bad... there not spending there money

 

 

that's right you can paint a turd... its still a turd..

 

Rule 2:

Owners...  don't want to be bothered with anything... they have a business to run... employees... customers are #1...

NOT YOU..

They don't care that your paying them  $XX.00 a month for that spot.. its out of kindness.. at that level.

Unless you have machines paying them $300-$600 a month in commission its business level your paying his light bill.

then they will live with complaints mostly

 

Rule 2.1:   The more your machine breaks,  looks bad, Customers Complain.... the more the owners going to be

looking at Rule 2... and your gone..

 

And when you get booted for installing crap...  you closed the door for a Real bulk vendor to come in the future.

because you have burnt the owner on problems, no money... etc.. 

 

Bulk vendors are the Cheapest bunch of people I have ever met in my life..

reading this forum proves the above statement,    they will write a thread over a $3.00 lock and where can I get it cheaper?

 

It costs less than $300.00 to build a A&A, Northwestern, OAK Or Beaver Triple on a stand..

That will make you more money in the long run.. more flexible products... worth more 10 years from now. and Improves the look

of the store lobby.. and still be worth $150.00 used any day.

 

I can give you example after example,

 

Last week,  went into a store  there was a RHINO  rack..  a cheep knockoff beaver, 

Store owner wanted it GONE  kept jamming and breaking  customers were complaining..

there was also a Vendstar triple..  

Both got the boot.. 

I carried them both to the backroom for the other bulk route owners to pickup

Now I have a Allstar 7 way with six sticker rack in the lobby.    with all Beaver machines..

and a crane going in soon.

 

Don't get me wrong, I am a huge fan of buying used..

and I buy more equipment per month used than most.

 

but only buy the top 4 brands..

if you going to treat this like a business then do so, but being extremely cheep leads to no real profits.

its been proven time and time again.. appearance is everything

 

 

bottom line is you use a vendstar...  your losing money... period.   

you didn't save a dime buying a $11-$35 plastic crap.

 your losing money on the location and possibly the location.

 

 

bill

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