How Much Do ATM Owners Make?

Installing an automated teller machine at your place of business — or maintaining your own ATM business as a side hustle — can be an excellent source of passive income through surcharge revenue. But we commonly get the question, “How much do ATM owners make?”

Of course, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. The cost of stocking and maintaining machines is fairly uniform, but beyond that, how much you make will depend on many different factors, such as location, foot traffic, demand, etc. However, knowing how to work these factors to your benefit can definitely increase your bottom line and make sure you get a solid return on investment.

So, if you’re wondering how much money can you make owning an ATM machine, let’s take a look at some of the common factors that figure into your profit margin when you invest in your own ATM machine.

How Much Money Can You Make Owning an ATM Machine? It’s All About Location, Location, Location

By far, the largest variable that determines how much passive income you’ll make with an ATM machine is where you place the machine itself. If you place your ATM in a dark corner with very little foot traffic, you’ll make considerably less than you would if the machine were placed in a highly visible area with lots of people. An ATM in a high-traffic area can make an average of 800 transactions per month, and in some cases even more.

Some tips for ATM placement to maximize your profits:

  • Place the ATM in a visible location that is easy to access.
  • Place colorful, visible signage around the machine to make it easy for customers to identify.
  • Place ATMs along routes of high foot traffic (e.g., the main walkway of your store, a mall kiosk or near a food court).

How Accessible is Your ATM?

Another factor that can affect your profits is how many hours per day your ATM is accessible. If you have an ATM in your brick-and-mortar store and your hours are 9am-6pm, those are the only hours where you can expect transactions to occur. By contrast, a 24-hour convenience store in a high-traffic location can see 3000 or more ATM transactions per month.

Setting Surcharge Fees

As an ATM owner, you generate revenue from the service charge assigned per transaction, minus any fees you pay for your ATM processing. You get to pick the service charge, but you should be aware of your local area and what customers expect to pay. The average surcharge fee is between $2 and $3 per transaction depending on where you live. Theoretically, if you charge $3, you’re making 1/3 more per transaction than if you charged $2. However, if customers figure out the business across the street charges $2 while you’re charging $3, you’re apt to get fewer transactions per month. Pay attention to the average ATM surcharge fees for the market in your area and price accordingly for the best results.

Demand for Vault Cash

Another factor weighing into your revenues is to what extent a customer uses cash in a specific location. If your business is cash-only, or if you offer a discount for cash sales, you’ll likely see more ATM transactions. If the machine is in a place that sees lots of credit card or Apple Pay sales, you’ll see fewer transactions.

More Than Passive Income: Secondary Revenue Boosts for ATMs

It’s not all about surcharge revenue. Another consideration, and one that might be difficult to measure, is how much the presence of an ATM boosts your other sales. If you have an ATM machine in your bar, for example, 75 percent of your ATM customers will buy drinks with that money. Additionally, people spend about 20 percent more in a convenience store or gas station if they use the ATM first. These profit boosts may be difficult to attribute to your ATM machine directly, but they certainly add to your overall bottom line — especially for a small business.

When you utilize all these factors to your advantage, there’s really no upper limit to how much money you can make owning an ATM machine., LLC offers a wide range of new ATM machines for sale — including Hyosung, Genmega, and Triton ATMs. We can offer excellent advice to business owners on how and where to place them for the best results. So, if you still need more clarity on the question “How much do ATM owners make?” call us at 1-866-295-2329 to learn more about our ATM processor services and ATM placement program.

Putting Together an ATM Business Plan

Every good new business requires a well-written business plan, and an ATM business is no exception. Even though automated teller machines essentially provide passive income through surcharge fees, if you invest in one or more machines without a clear strategy for how you’ll leverage them for income, you could still be wasting your investment dollars. Fortunately, putting together an ATM business plan is a relatively simple endeavor that articulates the value of the business opportunity you’re putting together, and it will go a long way toward helping you stay focused on your goals.

Purpose of Your Business Plan

Regardless of the type of business you have, a business plan is generally written with one of two audiences in mind, and possibly both:

  • Lenders and investors. If you plan to raise capital to start your ATM business, banks and potential investors will want to know what your company is about and how you plan to make money.
  • You and your team (if applicable). Your business plan helps to galvanize your strategy in writing so you can refer back to it, remember your objectives and track your progress.

Basic Elements of a Business Plan

Business plans can follow a number of different structures, but most tend to contain the following elements:

  • Executive Summary: A brief description of your company for the sake of possible investors (think of this as your elevator pitch). The Executive Summary typically includes your business name, mission statement, bio, what you’re selling (in this case, ATM services), projected growth, and current financial assets.
  • Company Description: More details about how the business will be structured (e.g., sole proprietorship, partnership, LLC or corporation), as well as information on the services you’re offering and your target market. (For an ATM business, this would include the number of ATM machines you plan to buy and where you plan to place them.)
  • Market Analysis: Why is this business needed? Who will use your ATM machines and why? What ATM locations will you focus on? Here you’ll outline any research you’ve conducted about ATM use in your area, best strategies for placement in areas with ample foot traffic, advantages you offer business owners over your competition, etc.
  • Management Structure: If you plan to work with a leadership team or a team of ATM operators, describe who they are and what they bring to the table. If it’s just you, a brief bio will suffice.
  • Financial Projections: Detailed documentation of your bank accounts’ financial outlook and projected profit from surcharges and loss over the next several years.

Additional Tips for Creating a Good ATM Business Plan

  • Make Conservative Projections. Don’t inflate your numbers to impress investors—they can usually see through it, and you don’t want to make promises you can’t reasonably keep. Keep your numbers realistic and believable.
  • Use Visuals when Possible. A picture (or graph) is worth a thousand words.
  • Be Professional and Concise. This document may be used to bring lenders or investors on board, but mostly it’s a guiding document to help chart a course for your ATM business. Avoid fluff and sales-pitchiness. Be enthusiastic, but real.

Looking to become an ATM owner or start your own ATM business?, LLC can help you navigate the ATM industry and implement many details of your ATM business plan, including new ATM machines, ATM placement, management/placement services and much more. Give us a call at 1-866-295-2329 to discuss how we can work together to build your ATM company.

Starting an ATM Business: 3 Things I Wish I Had Known

When I started, LLC in 2006, I had no prior experience with the ATM industry and very little money. We’ve built a successful ATM company in the 14 years since, but most of what I’ve learned about the business has been through experience, trial-and-error, and a few hard knocks. If I can help small business owners just starting out to avoid some of the mistakes I made, then the hard knocks were worth it. When it comes to starting up an ATM business in the United States, here are three things I wish I had known at the beginning.

1. Always Run the Numbers.

Automated teller machines are great for passive income, but that doesn’t mean you don’t need to make sure the math adds up every time you place a machine. When you’re just starting out, you can be easily tempted to place a machine anywhere someone lets you, magically thinking that machine will bring in plenty of surcharge revenue. If this new location has low foot traffic or low visibility, or if the contract makes you give up too much of the surcharge split with the owner of the location, you could spend a lot of time servicing and stocking that machine for very little profit. Always analyze which are the most high traffic areas (convenience stores and gas stations are great locations, but they’re not the only ones!) and carefully review contracts so can properly do the math to make sure your machine will be profitable enough to keep it in that space.

2. Plan Your ATM Machine Route Wisely.

Anytime you have more than one ATM machine in operation, you effectively have a route. You’re going to visit those machines regularly in a particular order to service them and keep them stocked with cash. When choosing locations, ATM owners don’t just need to consider foot traffic and visibility at one location — they also need to consider how ATM locations are situated in relation to each other. It’s a common mistake to space machines too far apart or to place them in businesses with limited hours that restrict the time of day in which you can service them. If you don’t plan your route strategically, you could be working all hours of the day and night just keeping up with the machines, and not generating enough revenue to make it worth all those hours. Consider where you put the machines in relation to each other, and plan your service route to make the most of your time.

3. Make a Plan for Cash Stocking

ATMs run on cash, and one of the most common mistakes new ATM business owners make is not keeping their machines well stocked. An ATM that runs out of money can’t generate revenue, and if it happens more than once, customers will stop coming to the machine. Make sure you have enough access to cash so your machines can keep up with the foot traffic.

The good news is, when you start your ATM business, you don’t have to go it alone like I did. With an ATM provider and ATM placement servicer like ATM National Wholesale, you have the tools and the partner you need to make your new ATM business plan a success and avoid many of the mistakes I made starting out. Give us a call at 1-866-295-2329 to learn more about how to start your own ATM business.

5 Questions to Ask Before Starting an ATM Business

If you’re looking for a business opportunity that can produce a healthy revenue stream for relatively little effort, you might want to consider starting your own ATM business. People are constantly in need of cash, and when you place ATM machines in high traffic areas, you can generate a sizable income.

That being said, you don’t want to enter this business impulsively or unprepared. As with any enterprise, building a successful ATM business requires careful planning, startup work and usually some cash outlay. To help get you thinking in the right direction, here are 5 questions you should ask yourself before starting an ATM business.

1. Is this a primary business or side business?

Many business owners set up an ATM company as a side business to supplement one or more businesses they already own. Some entrepreneurs jump in with both feet and make ATMs their primary business. Which one are you? This is one of the first and most important questions you should ask yourself because the answer will greatly affect how much time and money you’re willing to invest.

2. What type of ATM business do I want?

Since ATM machines are found almost everywhere, not all ATM companies are shaped the same. Some entrepreneurs prefer the slow-and-steady approach, placing permanent or semi-permanent ATMs in strategic businesses and shopping areas to catch ongoing traffic. Others prefer to work in short bursts, placing pop-up ATMs at trade shows, festivals and similar large events to generate large amounts of revenue over the course of a few days at a time. Deciding how you want your business to be structured will inform the types of machines you use, as well as your time commitment.

3. Do I want to own the machines?

You must next decide whether you want to own your ATMs outright, or place them through a third-party company like National ATM. Owning your machines can generate more income per machine, but it falls on you to stock and maintain those machines, which can cost you more time and money. If you have a third party handle placement and management of the machines, you make less per machine, but it’s almost all passive income. All you do is provide the space.

4. What are my startup expenses?

Obviously, the answer to this question is informed by the last one. If you plan to buy all the machines, you’ll need more cash up front, or at least some sort of loan. If you operate your business through a third-party company, your cash outlay is considerably less. Determining how much money you have to invest up front will help answer these questions, as well as help you decide how many machines you can afford to start with.

5. What are my running costs?

Again, this question will hinge extensively on whether you own the machines. If you do, you should plan on at least $2000 a week to stock the machines, plus other expenses like electricity, Internet connection, ATM insurance, etc. If you have a third-party company manage the machines, these running costs go way down.

Whichever way you answer these questions for yourself, a well-planned ATM business can generate significant revenue for you. If you’re ready to explore your options,, LLC is here to help. Give us a call at 1-866-295-2329.

How ATM Businesses Generate Passive Income

If you’re looking for a business opportunity that can generate plenty of passive income, you might want to consider starting an ATM business. When your business is structured properly and your machines are strategically placed, you can create a lucrative revenue stream that requires only a minimal amount of time and effort on your part. Let’s discuss how an ATM business can generate passive income for you, and what you can do to maximize this effect.

ATM profitability basically hinges on two key factors: High foot traffic and low overhead. When you have these two variables in the proper balance, your revenue streams may feel virtually effortless. Let’s explore these factors in detail.

High Foot Traffic

Simply put: The more people use your ATM machines, the more profitable those machines will be. Strategic placement is key to getting the maximum possible amount of passive income per machine. Some tips to help you place your ATMs most effectively:

  • Place machines along the busiest foot paths. If you’re placing your ATMs inside brick-and-mortar stores, try to place them along the main walkway or near the checkout counters where people will see them. The same principle holds if you’re placing machines at trade shows, festivals or in outdoor shopping areas.
  • Place machines where cash is in high demand. Good examples might include a cash-only bar or a convenience store—places where customers are more likely to spend cash than use a credit card.
  • Place machines in well-lit areas with appropriate signage. Your ATM won’t be profitable if people can’t see it.

Low Overhead

The other side of passive income is to keep your expenses as low as possible—and by expenses, we mean spending less time as well as less money. You can definitely increase your profit margins by purchasing and maintaining your own ATM machines, for example; but you’ll also have greater time and money requirements in overseeing the stocking and maintenance on those machines. When you have to do that extra work, then by definition it’s not passive income. As an alternative, you might want to consider working with a third-party company like National ATM Wholesale. In this arrangement, we provide the locations, and we take responsibility for placing and managing the machines—all at no cost to you. You only provide the locations in exchange for a cut of the profits. While this setup gets you less revenue per machine, virtually all the income is passive because you’re spending less time and money.

Whether you choose to own your ATMs or work with an outside agency, running your own ATM business gives you the chance to earn large profits for little effort. To discuss the options and the possibilities of generating passive income with your own ATM company, contact, LLC today at 1-866-295-2329.

How Does ATM Insurance Work?

When you buy an ATM machine or start an ATM business, you have an excellent opportunity to generate a healthy passive income. The tradeoff, of course, is that wherever you store large quantities of cash (like an ATM), that place becomes a potential target for theft. Any ATM machine not owned by a bank is not subject to FDIC protection, so if your machine is burglarized, damaged or stolen, it’s up to you to cover your losses. This is why ATM insurance is always a good idea to cover any ATM machines you own.

Why Do You Need ATM Insurance?

If you keep your ATM machine inside your own brick-and-mortar business, you might assume it’s covered by your business insurance—but that’s not always the case, and even if it’s covered, it might not cover everything. In addition, if you maintain ATM machines off-site or in standalone locations, they probably aren’t covered at all. ATM insurance greatly reduces the risk of loss in these situations, and the cost of the premium is an easily managed business expense.

How Does It Work?

As the name suggests, ATM insurance is specifically written to cover potential loss and damage to ATM machines, as well as the cash inside them. It works pretty much the same as any other coverage you might maintain on your home or your business. You purchase enough insurance to adequately cover loss for each machine you own, and your premium is based on how much coverage you need, any add-ons you want and any specific risks you need to mitigate.

What Does ATM Insurance Cover?

Like any other form of insurance, the terms of ATM coverage can differ widely according to the company issuing it and how much you’re willing to pay. Some policies are far-reaching, covering everything from stolen cash to employee dishonesty to physical damage. Some policies may cover only the cash inside the machine and not the machine itself. For the greatest peace of mind, look for ATM insurance that provides robust coverage for any/all of the following:

  • Burglary—cash stolen from the ATM itself
  • Mysterious disappearance—for when the entire ATM is somehow removed
  • Physical damage or property loss—covers repairs or replacement of the ATM itself
  • Robbery—if you or your employee is/are robbed while servicing the machine
  • Employee dishonesty—covers you if an employee steals cash from the machine while servicing it

It’s important to note that some policies will cover these issues comprehensively, while some will offer certain types of coverage as add-ons or riders—and some things may not be covered at all. Always read the coverage “fine print” thoroughly before agreeing to buy the insurance.

Other Options

Like other forms of insurance, not all insurance will automatically cover every conceivable type of theft or damage. A couple of add-ons you might want to consider:

  • “Jackpotting”—If a hacker reprograms the machine to empty itself of cash, it might not be covered as “theft” under typical insurance because it records as a legitimate transaction. A jackpotting rider will cover this loophole.
  • Contingency coverage—If you have your ATM serviced and stocked by a security company, that company should carry its own cash-in-transit insurance that covers them if your cash is stolen while in their possession. If for some reason their insurance fails to pay, contingency coverage will kick in to absorb the loss (not unlike uninsured motorist coverage for your car)., LLC is naturally concerned for the safety of our customers, their property and their business. If you need recommendations for quality ATM insurance for your machines, reach out to us at 1-866-295-2329.

Ready to Start Your Own ATM Company?

So you’ve been looking for ways to generate passive income, and after doing some research, you’ve decided you’re ready to start your own ATM company. What’s next?

ATM machines can definitely provide an excellent source of passive income. They’re fairly easy to operate and maintain, and when you place them strategically, they’re a reliable revenue stream because people always need cash. At the same time, starting an ATM business does require a bit of ramp-up. You’ll need a business plan, and you’ll need to make some key decisions regarding how your business is going to run. Let’s look at some of the primary considerations that go into starting up a successful ATM company.

Choosing the Machines

One of the first things you need to decide is what types/brands of ATM machines to use, and whether you should buy them outright or let a third-party company handle placement and management. There’s a real trade-off to consider here: Owning the machines gives you greater control and a higher profit margin—but it also involves more work, more responsibility and more overhead costs. With a third-party company, you simply provide the space, the company manages the placement, stocking and maintenance of the machines, and while your income will be less per machine, all that income is basically passive, requiring very little effort from you.

Another consideration when choosing machines is how you will be structuring your business. For example, if your plan is to provide temporary ATM machines at large events like music festivals and trade shows, you want machines that are both portable and durable, but if your ATMs will be permanent placements inside brick-and-mortar locations, you’ll have a bit more latitude as to style and design.

Placing the Machines

One of the greatest factors in your ATM company’s profitability will be based on where you place the machines. For maximum impact, you want to choose locations with the following qualities:

  • High visibility
  • Large volumes of foot traffic
  • Good lighting and security
  • Convenient to businesses and vendors that require cash payment
  • Protected from the elements (if placed outdoors)

Securing the Machines

Since you are basically providing mobile banking stations stocked with lots of cash, ATM businesses carry some inherent risk of theft and damage. You can minimize this risk in a few ways:

  • Place machines in strategically lit locations, preferably with security footage
  • Use machines with enhanced security and tamper-proof features; and
  • Purchase ATM insurance to cover your losses in case of theft or damage to the machines.

If you’re ready to start your own ATM company,, LLC has a variety of machines and turnkey programs available to help you get started. To learn more, give us a call today at 1-866-295-2329.

Finding Perfect Locations for Your ATM Business

One of the most important decisions you must make upon starting an ATM business is where to place your ATM(s). How do you know if you’re placing your ATM in an optimal location? These are the four qualities that you should look for in a perfect ATM location:

  • Ample foot traffic. It’s simple math. The greater the number of people who walk by your ATM, the higher the chance that they will stop to take out money.
  • Proximity to cash need. While foot traffic plays a large role in strategic ATM placement, you also need to ask “why would someone need cash here in the first place? You probably don’t want to go out of your way to put an ATM near a cashless restaurant, even if it’s located on a street that receives a lot of foot traffic. Look for cash-only establishments or businesses that rely on cash tipping to pay workers.
  • Safe and secure. Make sure your ATM is installed in a well-lit area with 24/7 surveillance. Not only do you want to prevent tampering and vandalism of your ATM, but you also want to make sure customers feel safe to use it.
  • Convenient for you. If you place an ATM too far away from your home base or off the beaten path of a larger ATM route, you’re increasing your travel and service time.

Here are 10 examples of perfect ATM locations that tick all of the boxes above:

1. Restaurants and bars

While an ATM is a necessity in cash-only restaurants and bars, they are also useful in establishments that accept cards since many servers and bartenders prefer receiving tips in cash.

2. Concert venues and sports arenas

Merchandise booths and concessions are often cash-only, so an ATM ensures that customers don’t have to miss out on that snazzy band t-shirt or enormous baseball hot dog.

3. Pop-up outdoor events

Mobile ATMs are ideal for festivals, farmers’ markets, flea markets, bazaars, and county fairs since many vendors and activities require cash.

4. Gas stations, convenience stores, and grocery stores

When was the last time you visited a gas station, convenience store, or grocery store and didn’t see an ATM?

5. Tourist attractions

No tourist likes walking around an unfamiliar city in search of an ATM. Placing an ATM close to a major tourist draw ensure quick, fuss-free cash access.

6. Hotels, motels, and resorts

Plus, an on-site ATM makes it easy for guests to tip service staff — from the housekeeping team to the hotel bartender.

7. Campgrounds and RV parks

When a camper has a late-night craving for a bag of cheesy poofs, having 24-hour access to an ATM ensures they have what they need for a cash-only vending machine.

8. Beauty salons

Businesses that specialize in cosmetic and personal care services — including nail salons, hair salons, waxing studios, and more — encourage cash tips for their estheticians, stylists, and technicians.

9. Marijuana dispensaries

Cash-only transactions are generally required for dispensaries due to federal law.

10. Adult entertainment venues

Performers and servers working at adult establishments rely on cash tips.

Have more questions about finding the perfect ATM locations? Give, LLC a call at 1-866-295-2329.

Opening an ATM Business? 3 Pitfalls to Avoid

Starting an ATM business has the potential to transform your life. Decent money, a flexible schedule, and short hours? No wonder so many people are drawn to this line of work! Even so, it’s important to remember that an ATM business isn’t a “get rich quick” scheme. Here are three of the most common pitfalls people encounter when starting an ATM business.

1. Cutting corners by purchasing used ATM equipment.

The initial start-up costs for an ATM business can feel a bit steep, which is why many new business owners find themselves curious about used ATMs on sites like ebay. We recommend against going this route. First and foremost, used ATMs may not be compliant with current rules and regulations for ATMs. While you can certainly update your ATM to meet these standards, it’s often more cost-efficient to just buy an entirely new ATM. Another reason to avoid used ATMs is because, unlike brand new ATMs, used ATMs are almost never protected by a warranty. Finally, there’s the issue of customer psychology. If your secondhand ATM is especially old and beaten up from years of use, potential customers may think it looks untrustworthy and avoid using it altogether.

2. Placing ATMs in inconvenient, low-traffic spaces.

When it comes to ATM businesses, geography will be your key to success. Obviously, you are going to want to find locations that are highly visible, safe, and receive ample foot traffic. This is a no-brainer. However, you also want to take into account the range of your ATM servicing route, too. The farther your ATMs are from each other and your home base, the more time you will need to spend driving between them.

3. Neglecting to properly protect your ATM business.

When you start an ATM business, it’s important to acknowledge that things can and do go wrong. All the time. That’s why it’s crucial to be prepared for anything that comes your way.

  • Install ATMs in safe locations with necessary security features. An ATM machine is a huge investment — especially when you’re just starting out. Make sure you’re doing everything in your power to protect that asset. In addition to placing your ATM in a safe, well-lit area, it’s also a good idea to equip your ATM with any necessary security and surveillance features.
  • Make your business partnerships official. This means getting signed contracts with any business owners that clearly spell out the terms of ATM placement. We recommend consulting with a lawyer on drawing up these kinds of documents.
  • Get ATM insurance. Any legitimate business should have insurance, and ATM businesses are not exempt from that. As with any type of insurance, it can pay to shop around.
  • Vet your employees. At a certain point, your ATM business may grow large enough to require employees. Since you’re working with such vast quantities of money, carefully vetting potential employees prior to hiring will prevent you from getting burned later.

Have more questions about starting your ATM business? Give, LLC a call at 1-866-295-2329.

How to Earn Passive Income with ATM Machines

An ATM business is widely considered to be one of the most reliable ways to earn passive income these days, but how? Having been in the ATM business game for years, our team at, LLC knows a thing or two about making a healthy profit from our passive income earnings. In this post, we identify the two basic steps involved in earning passive ATM income.

Step One: Lay the groundwork for your ATM business

Before you start making any passive income from your new ATM business, there are some upfront investments you must make. These upfront ATM costs include:

  • Buying the actual ATM: The cost of an ATM machine can range from as low as $1,000 to as high as $10,000. At, LLC, we sell a wide range of ATM machines by Hyosung, Genmega, and Triton.
  • ATM insurance: Having insurance is the best way to protect your business in the event of crime, equipment loss, and liability. Just like any other type of insurance, you’re likely to find the best deals by shopping around.
  • Vault cash: ATMs need a steady cash supply to properly serve customers — meaning, you need to be able to load several thousands of dollars of cash into your ATM. At, LLC, we offer a vault cash program that simplifies cash access for your ATM business.

When you add up all the upfront costs of an ATM business, it may seem like a lot at first. However, keep in mind that your start-up costs begin paying off from the moment you place your first ATM. That brings us to the next step in earning passive income with ATM machines…

Step Two: Pay off your initial start-up costs … and profit!

Depending on how strategically your ATM was placed, you can easily earn tens of thousands of dollars each year from a single machine’s fees. With such a robust rate of return, it does not take long to pay off your initial business start-up costs and begin profiting.

Aside from any ATM fee revenue you’re sharing with merchant partners, the ongoing overhead costs for an ATM is close to nothing. If your ATM is installed in an already existing business, you don’t even have to pay for electricity. (Of course, you can enjoy an even greater profit if you already own the property an ATM is installed on — no need to pay someone else a cut of your money.)

Since many ATMs may be used 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, you’re literally making money in your sleep. Now that’s passive income!

Have more questions about how to earn passive income with an ATM business? Give, LLC a call at 1-866-295-2329.