Each year the AVA collate key statistics and feedback from the vending industry, sharing these facts and learnings with their members in their annual report. The census is sent out to all vending operators, with around 1/3 responding, providing a significant and useful snapshot of what’s happening across the industry.
There was plenty of positive news to report:
- Considerably more operators reported growth than decline for 2019
- The turnover of UK vending & OCS industry was up by 5.2% on 2018
There were also a number of key opportunities identified for 2020, and whilst these were made prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, we actually think they have even more relevance in the current evolving situation.
- The growth and importance of cashless (including contactless)
- Telemetry to drive smarter vending with 2-way connectivity
- The rapid expansion of micro-markets
The report also confirmed our own findings, that most operators now fully recognise the value of adding cashless payments to their machines, and are investing in adding this technology to both new and existing equipment.
The benefits of cashless were featured in detail in the report, with the statistics showing an ongoing and steady rise in contactless card and mobile payments:
- It offers a known uplift in sales of between 5-20%
- It makes implementing price rises easier and more flexible
- The ATV per transaction is higher for cashless than cash
- Cashless transactions are growing share versus cash
- Contactless transactions are growing share versus contact
- Cashless payments breakdown is now 22% contact, 55% contactless, 23% mobile/NFC
It was acknowledged that the COVID-19 outbreak was likely to accelerate the penetration of cashless across the industry, with operators looking to get their services back online with safe and more efficient payment methods.
But as a direct result of the crisis, cost may become more of an issue for those investing, which could mean the increased use of refurbished machines, making it critical that payment systems (like our Vendotek and Flex terminals) can be easily retrofitted onto older machines, not just new equipment.
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