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Exploring the power of vending machines in India

Updated: Apr 27, 2023

The scarcity of vending machines in India is surprising because when you think about it, the need for these machines is really high. Whether it is in offices, schools, colleges, or multiplexes, these machines can find use anywhere. They can dole out chocolates, snacks, and beverages. There are also vending machines that dispense a variety of other commodities apart from eatables. Users can insert a coin, type in a code, and get the item they want. Installing effective and user-friendly vending machines at the places mentioned above can benefit the consumers as well as the providers.

According to Technavio, the global vending machine market is expected to observe a compound annual growth rate of 34.4% CAGR during 2018-2022. But even after such perceived high demand, these machines can be found at only a few places and aren’t widely accepted. Some users don’t fancy it, others don’t know how to use the machine, and some find it inconvenient.

Here are some reasons why Indian users avoid vending machines. Each of these factors can be systematically resolved to help the Vending eco system grow faster!

1. Cash Transactions

Vending machines are designed for convenient purchases of different commodities. However, in reality, many people refrain from using it since most machines only accept cash. This didn’t help matters after the demonetization in 2016 which prompted many people to stop carrying cash. That apart, at most vending machines, you need exact change to buy products from them. Moreover, if you happen to insert notes that are tattered, the machine won’t accept it, and in some cases, it might hold the money keeping the user from retrieving either their money or the product or worse- both!

2. High Capex investments leading to Low accessibility

There are just not enough vending machines in India.

Indian vending machine operators do not have access to cost effective vending machines. This coupled with MRP restrictions makes return on CApex investments below optimal.

Vending machines are rarely found, and most people see it only at airports. Of the few machines that you find, some provide only a few basic commodities, some don’t have multi-language support, some are complicated to operate, and some are broken.

3. Malfunctioning Machines

The technology used by these machines is not up-to-the-mark. For example, in some cases, the vending machine dispenses products of different values as a result of faulty software and hardware. This naturally makes people scared that their money would be wasted, or that they won’t get the desired product.

4. One Product at a Time

The few vending machines that are available (at airports and offices) offer only basic products, which limits its utility. Further, you can only take or buy one product at a time. So, if you were to buy more than one product, you would have to make a separate transaction for each one of them. As a result, many users prefer going to a different retailer rather than spending too much time waiting at the vending machine.

5. Non-User-Friendly Mechanism

The concept of vending machines is not new in India. But, its low user-friendliness, complicated technology, and lack of accessibility lead people to desist from using it. Some people can’t access the vending machine simply because they don’t understand how to operate it while some don’t like what’s on offer. These factors reduce the consumer satisfaction to a great extent.

6. Inconvenient Functioning

Vending machines today are competing with convenient services offered by canteens/ pop stores at offices. People find it much easier to go to the canteen outlet and ask for the products they want as compared to operating vending machines. For vending machines to attract more users and gain popularity among them, they need to overcome the barriers posed by technology and provide exceptional consumer service.

New Generation Vending Machines

According to a report by VendingMarketWatch, approximately 31% of the vending machines are providing cashless transactions.

With the right technology, vending machines can provide hands-free payments, multiple product dispensation, inventory analytics, and multi-language support. The technology employed by Vendekin can make it possible to enhance the vending experience and improve vending machine usage. To take advantage of the numerous benefits today’s vending machines can provide, contact Vendekin today and see how our technology can transform your vending machine experience!


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