September 17, 2019

Techy Ten: Ten Technology Must-haves in the Self Storage Industry

With so many technologies in the self storage industry, it can be difficult to tell if a product is marketing fodder or actually effective. We’ll discuss how to increase brand awareness with digital marketing. The 10 most important technologies to stay competitive, and how to evaluate the success of your current digital tools and practices. Keep reading to learn more! 

  1. Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) 

Progressive Web Apps are mobile apps that don’t require an app store to download to a phone. They are 50% faster than traditional apps, 15x faster to install, take up 25x less storage space than traditional native apps, and take up 70% less data than traditional apps. Often used as an online rental tool in the self storage industry, they allow facilities to send notifications to tenants (office closures, upcoming bills, etc.).

2. Online Rental Tools 

Online rental tools are crucial to facility success in the digital age. They allow tenants to rent, pay bills, update their account, and more. They can offer integrations that allow tenants to sign leases and provide gate codes (automated move-in process). They are important because approximately 79% of self storage rentals use credit cards, and these online tools allow tenants to rent 24/7, 365 days a year.

3. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

You can have a world-class website and the most competitive unit prices in town, but if people can’t find you online, units won’t fill as quickly. Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, is crucial in helping tenants find your website/facility. Did you know that nearly 67,000 searches are performed on Google every second?

In a time where 39% of all global eCommerce traffic comes from search engines, Google currently holds 90.1% of the total search engine market share. Google is the ideal place to put your search engine optimization efforts. For more information on search engine optimization, click here. 

4. Pay-per-Click (PPC) 

Pay-Per-Click advertising campaigns are a great way to delve into digital marketing campaigns because your facility only pays for ad clicks, not views or impressions. Google is the king of search engines, as previously discussed, but SEO is not instant with results. For facilities looking to take the extra step in showing up at the top of search results, PPC ads are the way to go. Pay-per-click ads provide easily trackable success via Google Analytics, allowing a facility to readjust campaigns as needed for better results.

On average, for every $1 spent on Google Adwords, businesses earn an average of $2. 65% of all clicks made by users who intend to make a purchase go to paid ads, so if paid ads aren’t part of your marketing plan, they should be.

5. Market Intel™

Market Intel is key to success, which is why The Storage Group offers a state-of-the-art Market Intel™ solution, which collects pricing data from nearby competitors and helps you turn data into business decisions. Market Intelhelps facilities make decisions on pricing, discounts, and unit desirability while also tracking local trends over time to show pricing changes.

6. Video marketing

Did you know that more than 500 million hours of videos are watched on YouTube each day? Nearly half a billion people watch videos on Facebook every day, so having video marketing in your back pocket is a great way to bring your facility’s marketing to the next level. Marketers who use video grow revenue 49% faster than non-video users.

Utilizing video marketing can help increase engagement and increase the amount of time potential tenants spend on the website or social media page. In fact, users spend 88% more time on a website that has video. Not only will people spend more time on the page, but they’ll retain more information too. 95% of people remember video messages on social media vs. 10% of text messages.

7. Email 

Consumers who purchase products through email spend 138% more than those that don’t receive email offers. Facilities can use emails to ask for online reviews, follow up with customers that left partway through the checkout process, and more.  Approximately 49% of businesses use some form of email automation. For example, The Storage Group offers enhanced brand awareness emails, which are automatically sent to new tenants, urging them to leave a review of the facility on Google or Yelp. 

8. Social media
Looking to create more internet noise about your facility? It’s estimated that nearly two-thirds of U.S. adults (68%) now report that they are Facebook users. Social media can provide a valuable platform for facilities to connect with tenants, offering discounts, storage tips, and more. There are numerous benefits to utilizing social media. In fact, 71% of consumers who have had a positive experience with a brand on social media are likely to recommend the brand to their friends and family.

Nearly half of Generation Z and 42% or Millenials say social media is the most relevant ad channel. By allocating resources for social media in your marketing plans, your facility can reap the benefits of increased brand awareness and tenant engagement.

9. Internet Browser Extensions 

Nowadays, many internet browsers have add-ons, such as Chrome Extensions. These extensions or add-ons can help with things like coupons, grammar, or language translation. 13 extensions have more than 10 million downloads, and for a facility owner, these extensions can prove to be extremely useful. Add-ons such as Grammarly correct grammar and spelling, help a facility maintain a professional presence and on-brand in their tenant communications. Looking to purchase additional items for a facility? Use an add-on such as Honey to track prices and purchase an item when it’s at its lowest prices.

10. Key Performance Indicators (KPI) 

Create SMART goals (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, time based) to help understand your marketing goals. Measure progress with analytics, so that over time, you’re able to assign budgets to goals instead of a general ‘marketing’ budget that you pull from as needed (ex. Set aside money for SEO, PPC, websites, etc.). This will help you set channel-specific goals (EX. Facebook vs. PPC).

Increasing brand awareness

Your goal when increasing a marketing budget should be to increase brand awareness and sales. With that in mind, only invest in marketing efforts that create awareness within the appropriate target markets. For example, you probably don’t need to advertise on Snapchat because your target audience is likely not finding self storage facilities on that platform. Advice from the experts? Begin with search engine optimization, pay-per-click, and progressive web apps to increase brand awareness and engagement.

Evaluating your marketing

To evaluate if analytics are working, start tracking analytics and data through a third-party dashboard, such as The Storage Group’s Performance Dashboard™. This will help you evaluate growth and see if certain marketing efforts create better ROI than others. For more information or to schedule a demo, please reach out to our sales team at or at 888-465-6247.