Since the dawn of unattended retail, there has been a need for perfecting the system and knowing what's going on at the machines. Because of the very nature of unattended retail and the lack of human presence to observe and make daily reports, this was a pretty challenging task.
In the last decade, tracking of machine processes has been born with the appearance of telemetry devices. Telemetry has been collecting basic data about sales, revenue, and events from the machines, and merchandisers could send that data using handheld devices to a vending management system. From the system, managers could pull out the data and use it for reporting.
A pioneer in the digitalization of unattended industry
However, a new era of digital and AI technology further enhanced telemetry-based systems. How so? These advanced systems take the data collected from machines, apply AI and automation technology, and turn it into predictions and action suggestions. Now, operators do not only have real-time data, but they have suggestions upon which they can act and optimize business processes.
Televend is a pioneer in unattended retail digitalization connecting over 300.000 machines all over the world. Tea Meštrović, Director of Product at Televend, has shared their thoughts on how Televend is revolutionizing the industry: "AI and cloud are gaining more and more traction, and Televend is leading that trend in vending. Predicting future demand purely by guesswork is eliminated with AI and smart algorithms, which remove human error."
React faster to the changes in the market
"We’re seeing a growing demand for real-time vending management solutions because they enable a faster reaction to the dynamic changes happening daily at workplaces." Tea said. Televend collects sales data with exact transaction details in real time. It also analyzes historical data and creates sales predictions seven days ahead, which enables operators to predict future demand and anticipate changes in consumer behavior.
Cut losses and gain more profit
Streamlined inventory management is another key that unlocks the gate to digitalization. Televend makes this possible by allowing operators to know precisely how much stock they have at each machine at any given time, anticipating any shortages causing sales losses. "We are helping operators to predict when to restock machines and which products to offer in their machines to boost profits." Tea explains.
Tea emphasizes that “digitalization is helping improve the vending industry and simplify the daily work of the operators," such as remote price and planogram management. Using Televend, managers can change product quantities and prices with one click from the comfort of their office, eliminating traveling to each site. In time, operators can also notice the patterns in sales, so they can optimize the planograms to gain more revenue.
Optimize logistics processes
Another big area of improvement is warehouse and pickup optimization. Arranging the products in the warehouse to simulate the planogram, gathering the accurate pickup list from the system, and prekitting products before starting the route have multiple benefits for operators. It makes 30% less stock, 40% fewer warehouse activities, 60% van load decrease, and complete control over your stock. More importantly, it saves time and optimizes warehouse and merchandiser staff workload, which is very important in the age of staff shortage.
Annulate staff shortages
One of the biggest pushes of digitalization is "the fluctuation of people in workplaces during the pandemic," Tea observes. Televend developed a route planning system that eliminates unnecessary trips and optimizes workload by 30% by allocating the surplus of working hours to serve more locations. The system uses AI and machine learning to drive conclusions from historical sales and stock data. It is based on triggers and a prioritization model, which suggests when and where merchandisers must go next to fill the machines.
Televend offers a range of integrations with some of the most popular VMS systems in the market and supports 3rd party telemetry devices. It can serve a variety of unattended retail niches, including commercial and industrial vending machines, micro-markets, smart fridges, and professional and OCS coffee machines.
If you want to learn more about how Televend can digitalize your vending business, please get in touch with their sales team.