Yesterday’s vending machines are today’s technologically sophisticated kiosks and, man, are they popping up everywhere. Just look at news from the past week.
While you may have thought there weren’t any more places left in front of retail stores to go and rent a DVD, there now comes the news that Family Dollar is putting Redbox units in front of its roughly 7,200 locations.
"As Family Dollar continues to broaden its assortment and increase relevancy to our customer, Redbox is a natural addition to our growth initiatives," said Michael Bloom, president and chief operating officer for Family Dollar, in a statement. "The Redbox kiosk is the definition of convenience for movie and game rentals and will provide value, convenience and additional reasons for customers to visit Family Dollar stores more often."
Also making news in the kiosk world — Seattle’s Best Coffee. The division of Starbucks announced that it would be rolling out thousands of kiosks to sell cups of its coffee, mochas and vanilla lattes. Seattle’s Best spokesperson Jenny McCabe said that with prices starting at $1, the company believes each unit will dispense about 10,000 cups each.
Seattle’s Best is looking to have 500 "Rubi" kiosks operating by the summer with thousands more located in food, drug and mass merchant locations to come. The kiosks grind and brew fresh whole beans for each single cup. Each unit, according to a press release to announce the venture, "occupies approximately nine square feet and provides increased foot traffic and a turnkey solution for retailers, creating operational efficiencies."
The coffee company is working with Coinstar, parent of Redbox, on the venture.
"This relationship is a logical next step in our strategy to bring great coffee to new and unexpected locations where it’s traditionally been hard to find great coffee," Jim McDermet, senior vice president and general manager of Seattle’s Best Coffee, said in a statement.
- Family Dollar Brings Redbox Kiosks to Its Locations Nationwide – Family Dollar Stores, Inc.
- Redbox Kiosks Coming to Family Dollar Stores – Inside Redbox
- Coinstar, Inc. and Seattle’s Best Coffee Sign Exclusive Agreement to Roll Out Thousands of the New Rubi Kiosks in Grocery, Drug and Mass Channels – Coinstar, Inc./Seattle’s Best Coffee
- Starbucks Unit In Coinstar Kiosk Deal – Bloomberg News
Discussion Questions: How big a part will kiosks play in retail in the years ahead? What untried product categories do you see being developed for kiosks in the future?