Risks of Operating a Vending Machine Business

Vending machine businesses are an old business, but one that still continues to be profitable. You have a lot of freedom when you own this type of business, including choosing the locations (for the most part) for the vending machines and what type of machines you will have. There are many to choose from, including snacks, drinks, and even toys. You should be aware of the risks of this business as well when getting into the vending machine business, so you can begin working on preventing these risks.


The first risk to be aware of when you on a vending machine business is the location. This is not the location of your business, but the locations of the stores or businesses where you have your vending machines. Location is one of the most important factors to your success as a vending machine business operator. The type of vending machine you have will need the perfect location, based on your target market. For example, having a soda vending machine may  work fare well when located outside a grocery store or busy retail or business establishment.

Health Issues

The health issues of the food and drinks you provide in the vending machine is another thing to be concerned about. First of all, you might want to consider including items in your vending machine that are on the healthier side, since there is a push these days to eat healthier and reduce obesity.  Another thing, is that you will have to keep up with the quality and date stamp of the food. If you have items that don’t sell quickly, you will need to remove them before the expiration date. This also present a liability risk if someone gets ill from food they got out of the vending machine.

The Vending Machine Industry

The industry itself is another concern. While there are still plenty of places that have vending machines, it isn’t quite as common as it once was. Soft drinks and candy may not sell as well these days because some people opt for healthier options. If you offer juice, bottled water, and healthy snacks, you have a good chance at becoming profitable, with the current market and industry.


The last risk of operating a vending machine business is the maintenance factor. Maintenance on a single machine can be hundreds of dollars if it breaks. Add that to the fact that every machine is around $4,000 or more, and you have a lot of financial risk with maintenance of these machines. By taking good care of the machines and making sure you buy high quality machines in the first place, you can prevent this risk.

While these risks are something to be aware of, it does not mean you will need to face them alone by owning a vending machine business. If you make the right choices, do your research and get vending machine operations insurance, you can mitigate these and other risks.