Five Reasons Your Vending Business Should Accept Cashless Payments

December 15, 2022 | By Sonya Lehner

Five Reasons Your Vending Business Should Accept Cashless Payments

As people opt out of using cash for everyday purchases, many operators are reassessing their business strategy. That includes accepting cashless payments: debit and credit cards or mobile wallets. 

Here are some retail stats that show how consumers and business are shifting away from cash: 

Not convinced? Here are five reasons why your vending machine business should accept cashless payments. 

1. It’s more convenient for customers to pay without cash  

So many of us can relate to the experience of wanting something from a vending machine but not having any cash on hand.  

When you only accept bills and coins at your vending machines, it’s frustrating for potential customers. And it could mean you’re losing out on sales. Avoid that problem by accepting cashless payments. When you add cashless card readers to your machines, you’ll never miss out on a potential sale again. 

There’s nothing more convenient than offering multiple payment options. Cashless payments come in several forms: a debit or credit card that can be swiped, tapped, or inserted on the card reader, a mobile wallet like Apple Pay or Google Pay, or even a mobile app on a smartphone. If your potential customers can use cashless payments at your machine, they’re more likely to buy something instead of walking away.

2. Consumers spend more when they go cashless 

A lot of consumer habits have changed in recent years. One of the major changes they’ve made? Switching to cashless payment options.  

It’s a well-known fact that consumers spend more when they use cashless payment methods. This bias has been studied for decades and even has a name: the cashless effect.  

Just look at the numbers. From January 2020 to October 2021, cashless payments at vending machines grew 11 percent. In that same time period, the average cashless transaction increased to $1.83. So, adding cashless payment options to your vending machine lets you take advantage of the increased consumer use of cashless payments and the general increase in spending that comes with it.  

3. Cashless payments can deter vandalism 

Security is a major concern for vending machine operators. Vending machines are notorious for carrying a lot of cash, and they’re often unattended, making them easy targets for would-be thieves who could damage the machine—whether they get the money or not. 

One of the many benefits of accepting cashless payments is the lower risk of theft and damage because a card reader isn’t an interesting target. Simply put, no one can steal the cashless payments made at your vending machine. 

4. Cashless payments are more secure 

Have you ever bought something from a vending machine that didn’t actually vend? It happens all the time, and often can be hard to get money back. 

Cashless payments makes the return process much easier for your customers in case they experience an issue with receiving their purchases? Paying by card or by mobile lets a consumer track their purchases through their financial institutions — so they can verify they were charged correctly or to request refunds for non-vended items. 

Additionally, your payment processing vendor will help secure your customers’ payment info — which helps you maintain PCI compliance and meet the new EMV standards imposed by card issuers like Visa and Mastercard. EMV payments at vending machines are on the rise, with expected growth of at least 2 million transactions by the end of 2022, which makes it important to start accepting cashless payments if you aren’t already. 

5. You can collect real-time sales data from your machine 

At a cash-only machine, you don’t know how much you’ve made until you physically count your bills and change. But when you add cashless payment options to your vending machines, your sales data is available immediately. Which means you know how much money your machine is making, when it’s getting the most traffic, how your customers are paying, whether they’re buying more than one item at a time, and so much more. That data will help you make more informed decisions for your business as you grow. 

Ready to accept cashless payments at your vending machine? All you need is a card reader to get started. Make sure you partner with the right vendor, who will provide the tools you need to track your sales, manage your inventory, and expand your operation. 


Sonya Lehner

Senior Content Marketing Manager

Sonya has over a decade in digital marketing experience working with a variety of B2C and B2B brands. From payments and retail to luxury watches and commercial flooring, she's an expert in producing engaging, audience-focused content.

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