2020 is full of the winds of change, and it would be naive to believe that it won’t affect the second industry in our trend series – the vending sector. With smart technologies rising and changing consumer needs, you can forget about old and rusty vending machines that take your money and stop working. Now, they do not only offer diverse food and beverage options but can also serve you via one click on your smartphone.
The industry is vastly growing and expanding to different sectors, and as often associated with food and beverages, now vending includes gadgets, electronics, and other necessary appliances. As horizons expand, the industry is estimated to reach 5426.9 million USD by 2023.
Immense growth inspires new trends and innovations. Check out what are the vending trends for 2020.
1. Cashless payments
Always carrying cash and having the right amount of coins is more than inconvenient, which is why more and more people choose to use debit and credit cards or mobile payments. In Lithuania, the number of card payments per inhabitant doubled in three years, from 2014 to 2017, and the number is continuously growing. No need to forget the fact that more people started using their smartphones to pay for goods and services.
For a long time, vending machines have been accepting only coins and bills, but cashless payments are here to change that. Now, you can swipe your credit card, and a machine accepts the payment. Also, modern machines can be used via mobile apps that not only make payments but can also show what’s in stock and make more personalized offers based on your purchase history.
2. Payment security
With cashless payments comes the second trend – increased payment security. Although swiping your card is fast and convenient, it’s not always the safest option. Due to scams and data breaches, the vending industry is working hand in hand with financial institutions to ensure the highest security measures.
European citizens can relax because, in 2019, the European Union passed PSD2 (Payment Service Directive). The directive ensures Strong Customer Authentication (SCA), which protects your data and bank accounts from breaches and unauthorized money withdrawals. The new regulation brings more transparency and security to the vending sector, too. However, if you pay in large amounts, a machine might require an additional authentication procedure.
3. Automated shops
Amazon has been testing automated retail waters for a while now. In 2016, the company launched the first automated shop called Amazon Go, it was a breakthrough for unattended shopping. Even though vending machines are usually fully automated, it could be the beginning of a more significant thing.
As the industry expands, it could offer a wider variety of goods, including the ones you would usually buy at the store. Also, voice commands could improve the service to be more understandable and inclusive for everyone.
4. Diverse options
Now, we can set aside technologies and come back to the core of the vending industry – goods inside machines. When you think of a vending machine, probably the image of an old box stuffed with chips and candies appears in your mind. But not for long.
Retailers began focusing on broader food options and even gadgets to meet changing consumer needs. Modern vending machines now offer various goods from vegan and gluten-free snacks to umbrellas and headphones, or similar gadgets. Many retailers still avoid putting more expensive products in vending machines, but with increased safety and lower vandalism rates, these trends are changing, too.
5. Environmental-friendly solutions
We, as humans, aren’t the best thing that happened to Mother Earth… In 2016, 5 tonnes of waste had been produced per European inhabitant, and only 37% of that was recycled. It adds up to millions of tons of waste we generate each year around the world, and as only a small part of it gets recycled, retailers have to take action. As a result, vending companies are introducing reverse vending machines to recycle packaging after the product is consumed.
Companies like Coca-Cola, Tesco, Co-Op introduced their options to the market, which accelerated similar vending machines manufacturing.
6. Employee management software
We can discuss automated vending machines as much as we want to, but nothing happens without teams that take care of the maintenance work. If you run a vending business, then you understand the value of a devoted team and how even the slightest inconvenience can disrupt your work.
Many of these issues occur due to lousy employee work planning and dispatching. It inspired companies to adopt digital software to help with vending business operation planning. Field service management software for vending is a useful tool to manage your workforce, plan routes, and assign tasks. What’s more is that you get features such as reporting, calendar, and communication platforms.
Tasker Field Service Management Software
It’s time to bring your vending business to 2020 and meet new trends confidently. Tasker helps to alleviate the transition and simplify your daily field service operations. Tasker FSM platform is not only about planning, but it’s also about an empowered workforce and attention to emerging modernization. Using a digital platform to monitor work saves time and gives you more resources to start implementing a more automated business model and environmental-friendly vending solutions. Check how it works, and maybe you will enter the new year with a digitized business.