A Vending Machine Business Gave This Busy Mom a Perfect Work-Life Balance

Naturals2Go franchisee Shelley McCauley

Shelley McCauley Found Her Dream Career With Naturals2Go

By anyone’s definition, Shelley McCauley is a remarkable woman. The mother of four runs a successful Naturals2Go vending machine business and is also a foster parent of twin babies. So how does she juggle it all? It’s the flexibility that comes with the business, she says. Although she jokes that she didn’t exactly fantasize about running a vending business when she was a little girl, it has made all of her dreams come true.

“Naturals2Go has provided a business model that I could take and shape into whatever I want it to be. Our business has taken on a life of its own and has carved out a life for my family we couldn’t have found without it,” she says. Although she never considered vending before she heard about Naturals2Go, it made total sense once she learned about it. “It’s a business with a ton of flexibility. There are no worries about overhead like with other businesses.”

Starting a Vending Machine Business

McCauley placed her first Naturals2Go machine in March 2020, right at the start of the pandemic. Her additional 20-plus machines rolled out in the following months. She plans on adding more machines in the near future. “It’s crazy not to. Once you’re operating 12 machines, 20 is easy. It makes total sense to scale these businesses.”

At first, McCauley ran the entire vending machine business herself and went all-in with passion and enthusiasm. “I learned the mechanics of my machines and location strategies. I love grocery shopping, so buying the products is a blast. Customer service comes naturally to me because I love people,” she says.

Business Ownership with Naturals2Go

After a year in her vending machine business, McCauley got a call with the opportunity to foster a pair of premature twin babies. Although she and her husband, Michael, already had a lot on their plates, she really wanted to provide a home for them — and she did.

Vending Machine Business, Naturals2Go
As a Naturals2Go operator, Shelley McCauley is able to run a business and also be present for her four children: Rody, 7; Ireland, 9; Patrick, 6; Jack, 16; and twin foster baby boys (not shown). McCauley runs operations from home and her husband Michael, pulls and fills their machines. 

Because the twins needed so much time and attention, McCauley changed her role in the business and enlisted her family to take on some of the operations. “I became customer support for my husband and my brothers-in-law who joined the business. I was able to teach them all the things I’d learned and help them be successful,” she says. “My husband works early mornings and then pulls and fills our machines. I do all the business paperwork and handle the inventory from home.”

But McCauley also took on another role as she shifted responsibilities: mentor. Through Naturals2Go, McCauley became passionate about helping others become successful operators. She started working on the corporate team helping new Naturals2Go operators get started. She became so good at it that she now leads a team of Naturals2Go trainers. “I get to clap the loudest when the student surpasses the master,” she says. McCauley is continually humbled by the caliber of people who invest in Naturals2Go and the opportunity it has given her.

Leveraging Two Industries: Vending and Wellness

Naturals2Go takes advantage of two growing industries: wellness and vending. The company describes it as a perfect storm of circumstances to launch and grow a business. Consider these statistics: According to IBISWorld, the vending machine industry is worth billions and continues to grow. The Global Wellness Institute projects a 9.9% average annual growth of the wellness economy, reaching nearly $7.0 trillion in 2025. And Naturals2Go operators have another trend on their side: snacking is on the rise, too. Neilson reports a growing trend towards snacking, with smaller meals consumed steadily throughout the day from late morning to late afternoon, serving as midday pick-me-ups between full meals. A vending machine business with Naturals2Go positions operators to leverage all of these trends.

For more information about the Naturals2Go franchise, visit https://www.naturals2go.com/perfect-business/.

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Jill Abrahamsen’s career spans more than 20 years in editorial, design, and marketing roles. She serves as editor-in-chief of Franchise Consultant Magazine and FranchiseWire. Through both platforms, Jill reports on industry news and helps Franchisors spread the word about their brands.
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