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Here’s How to Start a Snack Vending Machine Business in India

Different types of snacks and beverage vending machine

As the population of working and college-going millennials and Gen Z respectively continues to become a bigger part of the retail pie, ecommerce solutions, such as Amazon and Flipkart, and the even faster quick commerce apps like Swiggy and Zomato have flourished. Enter instant commerce. With automatic vending machines customers have the ability to purchase what they want right where they are, that instant and all day round.

As the retail world speeds towards a mix of ecommerce, quick commerce and instant commerce, busy schedules and unexpected hunger pangs, have made vending machines a common sight across India. And for good reason. They offer a simple yet effective solution to satisfy our cravings on the go.

So if you are looking for a promising business opportunity in India, getting started with a vending machine venture, specifically a snack vending machine could be the perfect choice. So let’s dive into the snack vending machine basics and explore how to get started with this exciting business

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Benefits of Snack Vending Machine Business

First things first. Before understanding snack vending machine basics let’s first take a moment to understand the benefits of snack vending machines, both as investor and user.

No prior experience required

One of the main benefits of snack vending machines is, you don’t need any specialised knowledge or prior experience to run a snack vending machine. Basic customer service and business knowledge will suffice to get you started.

Diverse product offerings

Snack vending machines give you the opportunity to offer a wide variety of products to your customers. From chips and samosas to healthy granola bars and yoghurt you can cater to various consumer preferences.

Catering to a diverse audience

Being able to offer diverse products automatically allows you to cater to a diverse audience. You can customise your product selection to suit the taste of different consumer groups.

Low operational cost

Low raw materials and packaging costs are one of many benefits of the snack vending machine. Additionally, having all products available at one place reduces transportation expenses.

Convenience at every corner

Smart vending machines offer quick access to snacks, making them a convenient option for busy individuals looking for a quick bite. Moreover the ease of purchasing snacks from the smart snack vending machines increases as they offer digital payment solutions, reducing the hassle with exact change for the customer.

Generating Passive income

Once the snack vending machines are set up and stocked, they can generate income with minimal effort. An automatic vending machine can operate 24/7, allowing you to earn money even when you're not actively working.

Types of Snack Vending Machines

There are various types of vending machines in India, especially in the snack segment, available to suit different business goals and customer requirements:

Regular snack vending machine

These machines dispense a variety of pre-packaged snacks such as chips, cookies, candy bars and nuts.

Healthy snack vending machine

As the name implies these vending machines focus on offering healthier snack options like granola bars, dried fruits, vegetable chips and organic snacks.

Combo vending machine

These machines provide a combination of snacks and drinks in a single unit, providing customers with more choices.

Customised vending machine

Completely customised smart vending machines tailored to specific products or services.

Market Research for Your Vending Business

Before starting your snack vending machine business in India, it's necessary to do market research:

Research your target audience

Identify the demographics and preferences of your potential customers. Understanding your target audience will help you choose the right snacks, pricing and locations for your vending machines.

Assess consumer demand

Analyse the demand for snacks in the potential location for your vending machine placement. High-traffic locations like offices, schools, hospitals and transportation hubs tend to have greater demand.

Selecting high-traffic locations

Choose potential locations where your target audience is likely to come frequently. Seek permission from property owners or local MNCs to place your vending machines in those areas.

Analyse competition

Research existing snack vending machine businesses in your chosen locations. Identify their strengths, weaknesses, and the types of snacks they offer. Differentiate your offerings with a USP to stand out.

Legal Considerations for Vending Machine Businesses

Business Registration

One of the vending machine basics to start with is business registration. Register your company with the relevant local authorities and get any licences or permits you might require.

Health and Safety Regulations

Before getting started with vending machines, make sure the snacks you sell adhere to the FSSAI's (Food Safety and Standards Authority of India) health and safety regulations. Keep your equipment clean, and check the items' quality on a regular basis.

A doctor next to scales with pills and vegetables
It’s crucial to comply with FSSAI’s standards


Take into account purchasing insurance to shield your company from potential lawsuits or mishaps involving your vending machines.

Contracts and Agreements

if you're putting your machines on someone else's land have formal agreements that specify the parameters of the arrangement.


Understand your tax responsibilities when operating a vending machine business.

Factors to Consider While Choosing the Right Snack Vending Machine

Type of snack vending machine

Select a vending machine type that supports the objectives and vision of your company. You can choose from normal snack vending machines, healthy snack machines, combo machines or customised vending machines depending on your target audience.

Size and capacity

once you've decided on the type of snack vending machine you want, seek one that is the right size and capacity for the location where you plan to install it. Think about how many snacks it can carry and how frequently you'll need to restock.

Variety of features

Consider choosing a smart vending machine with modern features like touchscreens, digital displays and remote monitoring. These features can enhance user experience and also make machine management more efficient.

Payment options

Look for machines that offer various payment options, including cash, credit/debit cards, mobile payments, or contactless options. Providing multiple payment methods can attract more customers.

A woman making contactless payment through mobile phones
Multiple payment options attract customers.

Ease of maintenance

Buy vending machines that accept payments made with cash, credit/debit cards, mobile wallets or contactless technology. Multiple payment options can draw in more customers.


Take into account equipment that enables you to alter the branding, pricing and product options. This ability to customise can help you customise your services for particular markets and target consumers.

Robust software

Choose a vending machine that uses a robust vending software for everything from tracking inventory to identifying when a vending machine needs to be serviced, to providing transaction and customer data analysis for smarter decision-making.

After-sales support

Opt for a vending solution that offers reliable support following the sale. In the event of any issues, good responsive customer service might be crucial.

Operations of Your Snack Vending Machine

After setting up your snack vending machine, it is essential to look after its daily operations to maintain its smooth functioning. Here are some tips to consider

Regular Maintenance

Keep your machines clean and well-maintained to make sure they are in good working order. Eliminate any jams, sterilise the machine, and clean the display. Smart vending machine software, like vNetra, can keep you posted about the operation state of your vending machine fleet at all times.

Inventory tracking

Use remote vending machine management software,like vNetra, to track sales, inventory and machine sales performance. This can help you stay on top of your business even when you're not on-site.

Machine security

To reduce the chance of theft or vandalism, make sure your vending machines are technologically secure and placed in areas that are both safe and well-lit.

Customer support

Give customers a way to get in touch with you if there are problems with the equipment or if you want their feedback. Having QR codes to feedback forms and providing phone numbers for quick resolution are the way to go. If using a smart vending machine software, ideally the app or page for ordering should have a way to get in touch as well.

Marketing your Snack Vending Machine

To attract customers and increase sales, effective marketing is essential when getting started with a vending machine business in India. Here are some marketing strategies:

Attractive display

In addition to placing your vending machine in a location with high-visibility and high-traffic, it is also important to use attractive graphics on your vending machines to grab people's attention.

Discounts and offers

Running occasional promotions or offering discounts on certain products can motivate customers to try different snacks. For example, you can provide a complimentary snack on purchases above a certain amount or run discounts on specific types of snacks.

A price tag-type banner with an offer written on it
Increase your sales by offering occasional discounts and offers to customers

Create an online presence

Utilise social media platforms and online directories to promote your vending machines, share updates, post about your vending machines, create awareness and engage with potential customers. Remember before you sell, you are competing for eyeballs. Grab them wherever you can.

Customer testimonials

Encourage satisfied customers to leave positive reviews or testimonials. Posting these testimonials on your website, social media and business profiles can help attract more customers to your machines.


Starting a snack vending machine business in India can be rewarding. It offers users convenience and business owners a chance to capitalise on India’s love for food. Before starting, make sure to conduct thorough market research to identify your target audience and the best locations and best business, marketing and regulatory practices to serve this audience. It really is that simple!

And finally, as part of this ever growing instant commerce industry, as vending machine owners, be agile in order to adapt to changing consumer demands and market dynamics.

If you need help starting your snack vending machine business, email us at or give us a call at +91 9555712713 to start a conversation and our team will guide you from inception to the end.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I offer cashless payments in my snack vending machine?

Yes, you can easily integrate cashless payments like mobile wallets, credit/debit cards and QR codes to provide convenient payment options to customers.

How often should I restock my snack vending machine?

Are there any eco-friendly packaging options available?


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