How accurate are coin-counting machines?
If you are like me you tend to question almost everything. So why not question the accuracy of a coin counting machine. It’s your money and it should be counted with as much accuracy as possible. I searched for articles or studies on just that and what I found wasn’t exactly what I expected.
An Action News Special Investigation done by channel 6 ABC tested 3 separate options for coin counting kiosks. They tested TD Bank, PNC Bank, and Coinstar kiosks. Out of the 3 only Coinstar gave back the exact amount. TD and PNC bank either gave back extra or shorted the customer. This may look like a win for Coinstar but even if they gave back the correct amount they also charge an 11.9% fee for exchanging your coins. So you either use an inaccurate machine or you pay a fee.
Why would a retailer or a consumer want a coin counting kiosk?
So with all the discrepancy in the accuracy of coin counting, why would a retailer want one in their store? The biggest reason is foot traffic. Taking your coins somewhere to exchange them is a planned trip. Not only that on average when a customer exchanges their change for cash 45% of all the money redeemed is spent in store. It gets customers in the door that are going to spend their money in store. Customers that use coin-counting kiosk use that money to buy their essentials (milk, bread, eggs) or upgrade an item, so instead of hamburger they buy steaks. Customers will enjoy the added convenience of a one-stop shop and your store will reap the benefits. Most coin counting kiosk offer some sort of revenue share for letting them set a kiosk in your store. The profit per square foot for a coin counting kiosk is very high for the small amount of space they require. Coinstar also offers a partner coin counting option and up to a certain amount will allow you to put the change from your register, soda machine, or a prize grabber into the kiosk and redeem your cash at no fee. The biggest take away for both a store or consumer is convenience. Customers will pay for it and your store will now benefit for offering it.
Here are a few tips to help insure a more accurate count from the kiosk:
- Make sure your change is free of lint and dust.
- Note that the machine will count any U.S. coin except for the Eisenhower dollar or silver dollar coins.
- Consistently add your coins into the counter once you begin, since the machine may complete your transaction if a time lapse occurs.
- If you have any questions or concerns, it is always a good idea to call the customer service line for whatever coin counter you are using.