As vend prices surpass a dollar, operators need to have confidence in the capability of their currency handling equipment. Bill validators facilitate the raising of prices, but other devices can further maximize customer convenience.
HIGHER PRICE POINTS
Bill validators are necessary in today’s vending bank, either on the machine or as part of a stand-alone change machine.
The benefit of bill validators is to capture incremental sales, said Tom Paczkowski, vice president of marketing, Coin Acceptors Inc. (CoinCo). The acceptance of paper currency allows operators to raise prices and meet the demand of populations who are carrying fewer coins with them. Additionally, with more items selling over a dollar and consumers carrying higher bills, operators are practically forced to turn on the $5 acceptance.
lead to the problem of how to give change back to the customer. This can mean a larger demand
on the coin changer. A bill recycler might be more efficient since it can use the bills customers
are inserting into the machine as change for other customers, said
Paczkowski. Otherwise, the operator has to fill the coin dispenser more often.
VALIDATORS INCREASE SALES
When bill acceptors or bill validators were launched
around the 1980s, operators saw a spike in sales, maybe 25 percent back then, said Chuck
Reed, marketing director, MEI/Conlux. The argument is that by being able to accept higher
denomination bills, it’ll increase
the likelihood of not only a purchase, but the purchase of a higher
“Obviously everyone wants paper,” said Charlie Deck, president, Deck Vending Co., Conneaut, Ohio, about the popularity of bill validatiors. There’s definitely an increase in sales, he added. He is also increasing the number of validators which accept fives.
In machines with multiple dollar price points, Deck has seen an increase of at least 10 to 20 percent. Currently, these machines are set to present change in $1 coin mode, but Deck is looking at bill recyclers. “The American public wants to hold onto paper. Ones ($1 bills) don’t buy as much as they used to, so you have to accept $5 or $10s. If you have a bill recycler, you don’t have the added cost of a stand-alone changer,” said Deck.
Deck believes cashless technology and bill recyclers will each have a market in the future depending on the size of a location. Specifically, recyclers will be a good fit in a smaller location that still requires change for $5 and $10 bills. Currently, Deck has a few bill validators accepting $10 bills. He believes that number will grow.
Stansfield Vending Inc., La Crosse, Wis, reports that 80 percent of its machines accept bills $5 and higher. Some bill validators take $20s. “We are experimenting with recyclers, placing them in one machine at high volume accounts. They accept up to $20 bills and dispense $5,” said Jim Wilson, vice president. “Customers love them.” Although difficult to measure, Wilson believes the recyclers have increased his sales at those locations.
As the price of the products increases, said Wilson, fewer customers have the correct change in their pockets to make the purchase. This is a definite benefit to accepting bills in general.
RECYCLERS MINIMIZE CHANGER REFILLING
Paczkowski of Coin Acceptors makes a case for recyclers when a customer purchases an item with a $1.25 vend price. The consumer uses a $5 bill and now needs $3.75 in change. Instead of getting a pocket of coins, the customer can get three recycled bills and three quarters. He sees recyclers as something that can be empty at the start of the day, and then switch to returning deposited bills from cash paying consumers at a later time.
Coinco doesn’t offer recyclers, but Paczkowski sees
the pros and cons of the technology. Right now, he said the industry is in a discovery state,
evaluating the technology
of bill recyclers or, another option for increased price points, cashless readers.