Should You Install a Laundromat Change Machine?
There was a time when virtually all commercial laundromats were filled with coin-operated machines. Times have changed. In today’s world, coin-operated systems are still around. However, card-operated and hybrid systems are gaining ground. That makes deciding whether you should install a change machine a little more complicated. Asking yourself a few questions can help you sort through the matter.
What Payment System Are You Currently Using?
The payment system that you have in place is a major factor when you’re trying to decide whether to install a laundromat change machine. Consider whether customers have a reason to use coins in your establishment. If you use coin-operated machines or a hybrid payment system, then it might be worthwhile to install a change machine. However, if your customers only use a card system or an app to pay, then it’s less likely that a change machine will be a useful investment.
What if you’re considering phasing out coin-operated machines in the future? It’s understandable. According to CNBC, nearly 35 percent of adults under the age of 50 make no cash purchases during a normal week. However, moving to credit cards and digital wallets can exclude others who are unbanked or simply uncomfortable with the reliance on credit and technology. In this situation, knowing your customer base is essential.
Do You Have Security?
Your payment system isn’t the only factor to consider. Evidence that there is cash on site can make your business a tempting target for thieves. As Truic indicates, coin-operated washers and dryers can catch the eye of criminals. They may hope to empty the machines before you do. Change machines make matters worse. They’re often seen as bigger targets because there’s an expectation that a change machine won’t be emptied since it’s there to make change for your customers. Even if you aren’t worried about the potential loss from the machine, you may want to weigh the potential for vandalism and damage. Think about the security at your facility before installing a change machine.
Do You Have the Space?
In a commercial facility, you want to make the best use of every square inch. Do you have the space to install a change machine? Ideally, it should be placed in an area where your staff or security system can keep an eye on it. Its placement should also consider the flow of traffic between washers, dryers, and folding stations. You don’t want to set the stage for collisions by crowding too much equipment into one area.
Do You Have Staff to Help?
Do you have attendants on hand while your laundromat is open? Are they able to make change for customers who need it? If so, a change machine may be unnecessary. However, providing a change machine would free up your staff to assist with other matters. If your laundromat is a self-serve facility with coin-operated washers and driers, a change machine could increase your business. Customers may run more loads when they don’t have to leave in search of change.
What Are Your Business Hours?
Many laundromats open their doors early around 6 a.m. and keep them open until 11 p.m. or later to capture business. If your business uses this strategy and has an attendant on hand who can make change if necessary, there may not be a real need to install a change machine. On the other hand, self-service laundromats that offer 24/7 availability may benefit from the addition of a change machine.
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