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Vending management software?


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I tried parlevel, and I noticed seed live and those have vending software too. Anyone use vendtrack or vendors? think I had free trials and discounts a while back, wonder if they have a u.s.g. promotions or so? What do you guys use? Also not looking to prekit we tried that and it failed lol

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  • 2 weeks later...

I've been researching getting into the biz for a while now, now that I'm retired and have some time on my hands.

Thanks so much to all who have contributed to these forums. It has given me a lot of direction on where to begin and the many pitfalls to avoid.

As far as payments go, my research on here (thanks again) has led me to believe that signing up with Nayax is the best solution (as long as the fees are not too high), as they already include chargeback protection or recourse in the commission they charge, correct?

My research is ongoing for now, with no timeline for starting or even if I will proceed at all however if I do get into it, after nailing down a payments provider, the next move is to choose a VMS.

I had been researching VMS's for the last couple of months and I have read some reviews however I have noticed that there hasn't been much recent dicussion about the various systems out there so it was time to register on here and help out the thread by hopefully generating some meaningful discussion.

My must have criteria for a VMS is as follows:

1) Multiple warehouse management capability

The ability to monitor stock from multiple warehouse locations is mandatory for the future scalability of your business.

The last thing you want to do is integrate a VMS into your operation that won't scale as you do and then be forced to migrate to a different VMS down the road.

Even if you never open a 2nd warehouse location you may want to monitor stock in a small stock room that you may keep at a remote location by multiple high traffic machines for convenience, or even at one of your route managers houses if they keep stock there for you.

The software must also be capable of entering stock by case and unit size as well and automatically create a per unit price.

It must also be able to do this with some degree of accuracy as pertains to bulk vending.

2) The ability to remotely change prices on demand (telemetry technology permitting)

-I think this is is great feature. You can offer discounts to help move product that is nearing expiration without having to attend the physical machine location.

3) Customer engagement and loyalty programs

4) The ability to accept employee or student pre-paid/loyalty or I.D swipe cards

5) Must offer e-receipts

-Not really required for bev/snack machines however they may be needed for micro markets and I have no desire to increase my reoccuring expense and attention headache that adding printers on every machine would entail. If someone wants a receipt for tax purposes they can add their email at checkout (just like home depot and others offer now), or they can call or email me at the end of the year with the dates of use and card numbers used and my VMS should be able to give me a summary I can send them for tax purposes anyway, no?

6) Must offer mobile friendly management

-The VMS doesn't have to have a separate mobile app however it must at the very least have a mobile friendly site to log into.


So given all the above criteria, I have narrowed the choices down to the following, in no particular order:

1) Vendsoft

Looks ok with strong report generating capabilities.

2) Parlevel systems

Another company who seems to be fairly well liked from what I have read on here.

They also appear to have strong micromarket integration which as mentioned is important to me.

I would be looking at integrating something similar to their Hubz smart coolers

3) Cantaloupe

Looks like a very capable platform with strong report generation as well however from what I have read, like most public companies their support isn't the best.

That wouldn't be a deal breaker for me as long as the platform is stable as I'm fairly I.T savvy.

4) Vendit.ca

A Canadian company that I think is or was at one time related to Kane Vending in St. Catherines Ont?

They have a live demo on their website but it doesn't offer me enough to make a decent evaluation

5) NayaxVend

This one looks promising and says it offers strong report generation as well. It would be a no brainer since it would also offer seamless integration with the payments processor.  Their EMV machines are also distributed here in Ontario by Kane.

6) Vend-Trak

Not sure what's going on with these people. No links for demos on their home page work and their pricing page redirects me to what looks like a clickbait site.

Their FB page says updates have been coming for over a year now?

7) My Vend Track

My Vend Track is no longer doing updates so I don't know how long the software will be around even if they are offering it for free so not likely a good choice going forward

unless you only need basic management.


The only thing that scares me no matter which VMS I choose is that the "control enthusiast" in me doesn't want to relinquish control to the cloud in case servers go down for an extended period of time. We only need to look at recent outages at AWS and FB to see that even they don't have the redundancy they need to keep important systems going and my understanding is their recent outages weren't caused by denial of service attacks but rather by server software upgrades that went wrong, so another mission critical must have for me is the ability to operate offline and sync data later if need be. Even better would be the ability to sync data from all mobiles (route managers) with a local server at my main warehouse which could keep stock updated for all locations and then I could sync my local server with the cloud VMS server later if it ever came back up, and if it didn't I wouldn't care anyway as I still have the ability to operate with accurate inventory using local apps without the need to sync to the cloud. This would be my ideal solution however I get the feeling that none of the monthly subscription VMS's offer locally residing standalone desktop/server software as well for just such an emergency (other than some having mobile apps), but please let me know if there is one that has both cloud and resident offerings for offline operation.

From what I can see, none of the companies listed above want to give you a real demo without contacting someone so I would like to hear from some real user experiences.

What were the most coveted or mission critical features you required to operate your vending biz that made you choose the vms you did, and what features would you most like to see in any future releases that are not yet implemented?

Also, are there any other vms' that I haven't listed here that are worth looking at?




Edited by Grand Nagus
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Based on this post, if you ever decide to get into vending you will micro-manage yourself to death. This isn't a business that lends itself to minutia and you will waste so much time on fine, minute details that you will never make any money.

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I hear you. The main reason (which was mentioned in my op) for wanting a vms right away is for future scalability, that's all. I am not planning to set the vending world on fire overnight though, trust me on that one!

I also agree that if I am the only "route manager", then I really don't need anything more than a spreadsheet or basic accounting package anyways. Nor do I really have a need for warehouse management however telemetry does help with pre-kiting, and is also great for monitoring high volume locations.

If I do end up with a few high volume locations, those are the machines I would place the telemetry on, not on the machine that I know I will service on a weekly or even bi-weekly basis anyways, however you are correct, until I do get one of those locations then no, paying for telemetry doesn't really make sense and as you mentioned, might make a person a bit lazy and less likely to visit the machine when they should be, even if nothing more than to give it a cleaning and make sure everything is vending properly.

I might try the free myvendtrack for now just to get the feel of a vms and play around by entering some general product data while I'm still doing my research into the industry and then if it looks like the biz will be a go then I will decide from there. I've been self employed pretty much my entire life and consider myself a fairly savvy business person and because of that I have no desire to pay a dime more than I have to for anything.

I really hate entering data twice and since I'm also a "control enthusiast", I'm not sure I trust any spreadsheet or accounting data to be imported properly to a vms if or when the time comes that I do need a system no matter what claims they might make about their software and would rather just get a vms, enter the data once and be done with it and for 19.95 U.S a month, Vendsoft offers everything to get started for up to 30 machines and if I need the telemetry down the road I can move up to the next package.

In most cases free is better however sometimes free comes at an even bigger cost down the road if you have to migrate data from your accounting package or spreadsheet and because of the way it may be set up, your vms of choice won't import the data properly, or your vms of choice doesn't integrate live telemetry data when someday if you scale, you really might need it.

My many previous experiences with data migration is what guides my judgement today!😉

Anyone know of any other free or almost free vms software out there that integrates payment provider data?




Edited by Grand Nagus
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Perfect is the enemy of good enough.

I doubt you will ever find a cloud VMS that also has a local backup.  Either system will have points of failure, redundancy to zero failure is not a reality in even high risk/zero defect missions, of which vending is not.

Bulk vending is a dying market (that statement should light some fires here), but micro markets and reach in coolers seem to be here to stay.

To my mind, the VMS choices are limited to parlevel, nayax, and cantaloupe.  They are active and growing.  Smaller companies can't keep up.  I would not be surprised to see two of those three merge at some time in the future.   I have been using parlevel for several years and have mostly good experiences.  They fit most of your operating needs as stated. 

Refreshing to see a prospective operator worried more about the back end and future growth than they are about which used machine to buy!!  Best of luck.


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I have been playing with Vendsoft and so far it looks like it offers the best features at a reasonable price point for the small operator to get started  since telemetry is really only a convenience that can help with real time inventory management and prekitting anyway.

For a small operator starting out, I think developing proper route management skills the old school way needs to be first and foremost. Much more important than having the very latest up to the minute data especially when starting out as you will most likely be a sole proprieter and your own route driver anyways with maybe the occaisional helper unless you are buying an already established business.

Data seems to be easily imported and exported in xls format so that I can have master lists of just about anything from machines to inventory in spreadsheet format that I should be able to migrate to another vms at a later date without too much hassle should Vendsoft no longer meet my needs.

The only feature I haven't seen which I'm really hoping I can integrate is a barcode scanner for scanning of inventory when received in the warehouse.





Edited by Grand Nagus
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  • 1 year later...
  • 4 months later...

You’re overthinking with the VMS. Don’t worry about your warehouse inventory. You’re not buying pallets of product to start off. Just get Parlevel and start with that. If you’re using a truck or cargo van, just load up your vehicle, drive up to the account and pull up the parlevel vms or stock app on your phone and pull everything you need off your phone. That’s if you don’t pre kit. You can do that later once you start growing. 

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