When is a micro market the right choice?

When is a micro market the right choice? 

Micro Markets are becoming ever more popular in employee break rooms, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s the right fit for everyone.

Things that need to be considered:

Micro Markets work best in a closed environment.  If a company has outside contractors, delivery people, truckers that have access to the market, they may not understand how the micro market concept works.  We have experienced this where these outsiders think that it is a company benefit provided free of charge and it’s free for the taking.  If a client is presented with a thumb drive addressing shortages and the offenders can’t be identified, the micro market may not last long.  This same problem presents itself at companies that have high turnover or have a large temporary work force.  This is also the reason why you will not see a micro market in airports or other transient areas.

Micro Market Benefits

Micro Market Benefits

Why are so many companies choosing to put a micro market into their break room?  It’s true, many vending machines may have been replaced in breakrooms, but why – what’s driving this?

The primary reason for this mass conversion is that micro markets deliver an entirely different customer experience.  Being able to reach into a cooler for a cold beverage or pick your favorite snack from a shelf certainly embodies the “grab and go” society that we live in. With self-check-out taking place at many retailers, consumers are comfortable checking out at the kiosk and the transactions are actually quicker.

Why are Vending Machine Items so Expensive?

Why is the price for an item higher in a vending machine or a micro market than what I can buy that item for in a store?

This is actually a great question and one that we hear from time to time. First, stores try to have a certain number of lost leaders.  These are special prices that get a consumer’s attention because they are a great deal.  Sometimes these items are even sold at a loss.  Well, let me clarify this.  They really do not sell them at a loss because manufacturers give stores special price incentives if the store advertises the manufacturers’ products in the newspapers, etc.  With the incentive dollars offsetting the low price for the product, the stores are not really losing money.  Vending is a completely different channel and is not eligible for these advertising incentives.

The Service Factor

The Service Factor

Hypothetically, if all service was the same, it would be easy to choose a vendor by just comparing prices on a spreadsheet.  This would allow you to commoditize the process and objectively find the most price competitive vendor.

Unfortunately, service is not the same, so simple spreadsheets may help but they certainly don’t paint the full picture. Like any service industry, prices are typically determined by the level of service and the product offerings that a vendor provides. So to evaluate if the vendor is worth their prices, certain questions need to be considered to determine what’s right for your company.