Struggling malls replacing stores with vending machines?
Online retailers have been taking a toll on struggling malls for years now and vending machines are coming to the rescue! It is no secret that Amazon has severely impacted malls across America. Even box stores, for example Walmart and Bestbuy, have pushed online products offerings to compete against large online sellers. Walmart recently announced that they now offer free 2 day shipping to better compete with Amazon. Malls are losing tenants at record pace, leaving half empty malls everywhere. However, a new trend is headed to a local mall near you. Mall owners are working with vending companies to place machines in traffic areas of the mall. Sometimes, mall owners purchase their own machines, service, fill, etc. in an effort to maximize profits.
Pro Active, Pepsi, Coke Cola and others are now moving vending machines into struggling malls. We have all seen vending machines at airports… everything from Bestbuy machines to pizzas can be purchased in some airports. Bestbuy offers a kiosk locator on their website. Need an iPhone charger, no problem, almost certain you will see a Bestbuy vending kiosk at your local airport. As we move further into the digital age, can shop from our smart phone, etc…. malls are looking for ways to subsidize lost rental income and make money. Adding vending machines is a way to still provide mall visitors with additional shopping options. Other parts of the world have seen innovation with hot food vending machines. Now the technology is moving to American malls.
Online purchases has increased dramatically year after year and unfortunately malls will have a tough time competing in the future. Vending machines in malls will most likely increase. People still like to get out and shop at malls and adding vending machines will help big box stores keep popular items in malls that may not be able to afford an entire store.