Jump to content

The sales process for getting vending locations.


Recommended Posts

I wanted to touch base on this topic since it is the life blood of any vending operation. There are many ways to get vending locations. Some choose to buy existing, some solicit accounts that may not have vending at all, some choose the low hanging fruit type of accounts that are easier to acquire, some utilize locators, then there are the ones that actually go out and “sell” their services and target the harder to get accounts This means knocking on doors.  IMO this is the one that matters if you are actually “selling” because picking up an account that no one else wants because of low volume is not really selling.


I hear on this forum many times people say “they already have vending so how am I going to get them?” “The big boys have them and I can’t compete against them”.


First off if you plan on getting and staying in the vending business you better have a plan of how to do “sales” of your service you are offering. By nature vending operations are always dying and need to be getting accounts in order to grow or replace what we loose. The odds are you are going to loose accounts some operators more than others.


So before we can loose accounts we must first acquire accounts. With that comes some things to look at and I will explain the typical sales process. You first knock on their door and then you find out who you need to talk to that decides vending. Once you find this out then you will need to set an appointment up to look at what they have and figure out if you even want to do business with them.  What I mean is, I have called on accounts only to find out they had bad pricing, to much equipment, high commissions, etc and I didn’t want to do business with them.


When you look at these accounts you need to take notes and ask questions to make sure you are not missing anything important like them getting a commission, they are feed twice a year a catered meal by the existing customer, they have another location across town with 10 people in it with 5 vending machines because they don’t want to make those employees feel like they are not getting what the big location is getting, etc.  


Once you decide it is worth trying to get them you will then need to do a proposal and service agreement that is a balance of not giving away too much yet puts you in a good position to earn their business. After the proposal is written you will contact them to schedule another appointment and go over the proposal, answer any final questions, and do your best to sell them on doing business with your company. Usually they NEVER give you an answer that day. It may be a few days later to a few months.


If they choose to do business with you the next step is either you or the account contacting the current vendor for a switch out date. General rule in the industry is a 30 day notice to the current vendor.


This is not a hard and fast rule of how the process works but most times if they are a decent account with a current vendor this is the typical process. I have gotten to the waiting period and not been contacted till 6 months or so later. This just happen last week on a proposal we submitted over 6 months ago and they just now are ready to do a switch out. 


Keep in mind you are going to have to figure out if they are worth doing business with in the first place. I have seen vendors get in trouble because they missed something and the account did not do the volume they thought and they extended themselves with equipment that was hard to pay for. I have turned down accounts that do over 100k a year because I couldn’t make the math work based on their equipment demands, pricing, commission, etc. This also applies to smaller accounts that just didn’t do enough volume for me to do business with them.  


In the end you need to have a sales program of some sort in place if you plan on staying in business. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...