- Apr 04, 2018
- By Matthew Robards
How we apply Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Optimization in vending machines
Want to have your mind blown? Consider this for a minute: 90% of the world’s collected, digital data was created in the last two years. This means that we are collecting data exponentially faster than ever before, and the opportunities to get smarter and more efficient are endless.
However, we as a population have not yet caught up to the speed of our data. In fact, most organisations are currently using only about 12% of the immense amount of data they collect. The remaining 88 percent of data is currently untapped and is being stored without being put to use. This means that even though big data is providing us with an exponential amount of opportunities, as of right now, we are not taking advantage of them.
As a vending machine operator, you probably have more data than you realize: everything from your vending machine location demographics, to the purchase history of each machine, to the price history and product pairings that have worked in the past. The problem for most vending machine operators or even FMCG companies, who at times own them too, is not lack of data, but rather lack of direction and know-how in harnessing existing data and leveraging it to improve the bottom line.
Enter, Vending analytics. Vending analytics is an artificial intelligence (AI) application that learns over time using your own sales data to recommend product assortment, space to sales and price at an individual vending machine level. It comprised actionable strategies that allow you, as a vending machine operator, to get the absolute best return on each individual machine.
There are three main ways that HIVERY helps you optimize vending machines.
Harnessing the power of AI
You have more data than you think, and AI uses the data to learn and develop smarter planogram recommendations never possible before. Currently, the issue lies in the ability to interpret this data without the process taking years of your time and energy. This is why the power of AI is so important when it comes to managing and interpreting big data. AI essentially does the thinking for you: it sorts, organizes, and delivers actionable decisions out of the masses of data that your company has stored about your products and sales data. Because of the speed and efficiency of AI, the process of managing data and building retail strategy becomes realistic and practical instead of overwhelming. And the best part, it learns over time; so it will make only better, smarter and more effective recommendations.
You can read more about this, in this great post by Insider-Trends
Assortment, space and price
Vending Analytics learns from the trading history and patterns of every machine in the fleet, usually many thousands. It can see what products are selling in each vending machine and can understand the unique fingerprint of each machine.
Once AI is put to use to make sense of your data, Operations Research or Optimization, is put to use to make sure that your vending machine fleet is offering the most optimized space for your product assortment restockings. It’s all about delivering the best combination of product assortment and space in vending machines at a reasonable investment.
Turning your data into easy to follow action steps
At HIVERY, making the output easy for you to understand is as important to us as delivering you the most efficient and optimized information possible. What makes us different from other available solutions on the market is the simultaneous and interdependent nature of our optimization recommendations paired with the operation-centric application. This means that all our optimization micro-systems are mindful of each other. Our system displays the KPI and how it will improve based on the action you take. To get optimal improvement, our clients simply click one button – “optimize” – and the new recommendations are sent to the driver and get implemented in market.
Above you can see how our software converts the findings into easily actionable visible “planograms” and simply feeds into your existing Vending Machine software whether it is EASITRAX, Cantaloupe or your own inhouse application. Our solution removes the human factor from the decision-making process and converts it to just “review-action” task.
Best part, we are Software as a Service (SaaS) based solution. SaaS can slashing IT integration and deployment costs significantly. In fact, according to Computer World, companies that transition to SaaS subscriptions from capital-heavy, on-premise infrastructure installation or maintenance can enjoy an IT spending reduction of more than 15 percent! SaaS solutions mean faster deployments with little to no system upgrade disruption as ongoing upgrades can be done almost automatically.
Yet, you cannot optimize vending machines without knowing what your vending machine patterns are telling you and interpreting that information correctly. A recently published story by kioskmarketplace.com talked about how the Coca-Cola Company and related Bottlers have been using Vending Analytics. For Reyes Coca Cola Bottling Co for instance, it has generated 6% additional revenue and 15% fewer restocking trips. The bottler manages 19,000 vending machines across California and Nevada. You can read more about it on Vendingconnections.com
If you would like to learn more about how HIVERY can skyrocket your vending machine sales, click here or sign up for a product demo.