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If a location isn't doing $X I will pull it?


parrotthead
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Personally, Im trying to keep as many as possible as I grow. If a location costs more to service than net income, than pull it for sure. I drove 10 minutes to collect $2 from a two head machine, so i pulled it

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I exhaust all options before pulling a machine, but there are just dine that don't warrant a machine. I adjust the products offered and extend the service cycle if necessary. I like to collect at least $20 per service, whether that takes 30 days or 90. That's just an arbitrary number for me, but it is a measuring point. I've held on to some really slow locations, especially in the beginning, but if I give it an extended service cycle and is still performing poorly, it just becomes a hassle and liability and will be pulled. I've pulled around 10 since I've started due to performance and I have around 6-8 more that I'm going to pull the plug on son if I don't see any improvement. 

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1 hour ago, QuikVend said:

I exhaust all options before pulling a machine, but there are just dine that don't warrant a machine. I adjust the products offered and extend the service cycle if necessary. I like to collect at least $20 per service, whether that takes 30 days or 90. That's just an arbitrary number for me, but it is a measuring point. I've held on to some really slow locations, especially in the beginning, but if I give it an extended service cycle and is still performing poorly, it just becomes a hassle and liability and will be pulled. I've pulled around 10 since I've started due to performance and I have around 6-8 more that I'm going to pull the plug on son if I don't see any improvement. 

about what percent of your revenue is from the full-line vs bulk?

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It's close to 60/40 Full-line/bulk. The full-line revenue has really increased the last 6 months since I've picked up some good accounts. I'm anticipating a large increase on the bulk side in the next few months though since I hired a locator and he found around 80 locations for me. 

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21 minutes ago, QuikVend said:

It's close to 60/40 Full-line/bulk. The full-line revenue has really increased the last 6 months since I've picked up some good accounts. I'm anticipating a large increase on the bulk side in the next few months though since I hired a locator and he found around 80 locations for me. 

I suspected.  I am thinking that we need to get some full-line accounts as well to assist with cash flow.

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Yea, they really do help. The money the full-line accounts brought in really fueled my growth, especially early on. Getting 5-6 solid accounts will really go a long way. I know all of the big locations are taken, but those medium sized accounts that the bigger companies won't need with can still make some really good money. Occasionally you'll find a great one that hasn't been touched yet. 

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I pull locations that are inconvenient and make less than $20 a cycle, mainly because after a while either candy isn't good, or something happened like a jam etc . I come after 4 months and find out my machine's been in the back for 3 months and no one called me (they always say they called a bunch of times, but there's no record on my phone of it somehow) Or I find the store is closed and machine is gone. Plus if my machines isn't making $20 bucks after 3 months, that's less than $80 a year, and I could just find a better location for it. 

 

 

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The number for pulling a machine is a variable number really. As you start out, you want to keep as many machines working as possible, and you can handle the lower payouts. But as you grow, your time becomes more valuable, so the amount you should accept should increase.

It doesn't hurt to consider the bottom performing 20% of your locations to be on the chopping block. Do the math, and see how it would have affected your last service cycle. How much time would you have saved, and how much income would you have lost? A good practice is to expand, attempt to improve the poor performing locations, and pull the worst ones, and repeat. Those bottom 20% are probably 20% of your time, at least, but they might be 5% or less of your income.

The nice thing about constantly cutting the worst performers is that how much you earn per hour of work keeps climbing. 

When you are growing, you want to cut fewer locations than you are expanding. Every time you gain 5, you might want to cut 1. When you are struggling for time, cut out the worst performer every time you gain a location.

If you don't mind a little math, and record keeping, figure out how much you make an hour, and then figure out how much you make servicing each location. (Adjusted to an hour, or similar number.)

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I have only been doing this a couple of years so I try and hang on to everyone of my locations. If it can do $3 a month with gumballs I can service it every 6 months, that is not very good but not terrible. Also on low volume locations, it has to be places that I literally drive by.  I serviced an account last week that had $4 in it after 5 months. I will be going to get that machine very soon. It was never very good, but now they put out free snacks. Freebies, they are a location KILLER!

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Personally, I wouldn't even waste my time finding a location that doesn't earn 15$ in 4 months, but that's just me. I'm in the game to make the most out of my machines and get them in high quality locations

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1 hour ago, Grantamato said:

Personally, I wouldn't even waste my time finding a location that doesn't earn 15$ in 4 months, but that's just me. I'm in the game to make the most out of my machines and get them in high quality locations

Well I have several machines in the shed and the ones I am leaving have been on location for years and they are local. All it takes is for one person to try and quit smoking to turn a location from nothing to decent. An old vendor once told me " once a machine is on location, leave it. you can always buy another one" 

 

I didn't know they were going to be duds when I found them

Edited by parrotthead
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I agree. You never know what a location will do until you try it. I really don't pull machines unless it's proven to be a dud. If need them elsewhere and I've gone through my product changes, then I don't mind pulling them. But I usually have so many machines on hand that I usually pull if it's only done a few dollars after a few months. 

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  • 2 months later...

My minimum is 10.00 in 1 month.  If a location can't perform 10.00 in a single month, for me, its just not worth it.  There are thousands of locations out there that can perform much higher.  Sometimes it takes a few locations for it to stick.  I've relocated the same machine 4 times but at the end of the day, its worth it.  I now have 100 locations producing 10.00 or more per month.  I made a strict policy for myself, that I wouldn't expand until all locations are producing.  That creates a strong base to expand from.  But everyone has their own threshold, thats just how I like to do business.  Every time I service a location now, it feels great.   It sucks walking into a location pulling a few quarters out; or walking into a location 6 months later that produces similar to a location that gets serviced in 3 weeks.   Gotta maximize your earnings; thats the only way, cant be afraid to pull.  Yes, the time and effort to get that location makes it tough, but it feels f'n great to get that sh*tty location pulled; feels awesome walking out with it.   

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Im still pretty new so take it with a grain of salt but i go by amount and distance then number of heads. If i got like 4 single head spots within walking distance of each other making 8-9 i would keep them but if i drive a minute and its making 8 im pulling it. Generally its 11 per head for me, if i have a triple head making twenty i put a double head. Sometimes i might keep them there even if its a minute away though if i think i can get locations nearby it later. Right now im also putting Honor Boxes near my machines to fill in where i couldnt get more machines

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we usually pull if they are consistently less than 3-4 per month.  We've also lost about 4 due to businesses closing recently which is irritating because we haven't been able to get the machines back yet.  That experience makes me wonder about this topic more because of the risk vs benefit ration

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  • 1 month later...

It’s an individual process for everybody. I don’t recommend going over 4-6 months between services. Machines go missing when that happens. If I have a stinker that is out of the way I pull it. If it’s next door to other locations I try to move machine in the location, change product or displays, etc. sometimes it improves sometimes it doesn’t. If it can’t produce a minimum amount in 4 months then it’s either a dud or about to go out of business. Either way you don’t want your machine in there. 

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