October 1, 2019

The Importance of Real-Time Data

Data is everywhere. It’s used by every major company in every major industry. With so much data available to businesses, you may not be sure if data is an effective way to make business decisions. Did you know that 90% of the world’s data was generated in the last two years? In this blog, we will break down how data affects the self storage industry and your facility every day, and how it can help you increase profitability.

Big Data in the Industry

Recently, big data has been the talk of the industry – so much that we even published an article on Radius+ breaking it down. Big data, which is a blanket term used to encompass a variety of data gathered, including demographics, markets, analytics, and more. This includes the act of collecting data and storing it so that it can be used. Collecting data, which is discussed in the previous article, is key, but what good is collecting data if it doesn’t drive your facility decisions?

Radius+ Co-Founder James de Gorter emphasizes the importance of using data in self storage. “Timely and accurate data is crucial to making business decisions in today’s self storage market. Whether it’s managing, buying, or building your self storage facility, data delivers valuable insights to our clients,” said James.

In self storage, data can drive unit pricing, facility value, and digital marketing campaigns. For example, a Radius+ Compass report can provide information on demographics and local marketings. Similarly, The Storage Group’s Market Intel™ gives facilities information on local competition and pricing, helping facilities make informed decisions on how to most effectively price their units.

Does all data matter?

When collecting data, the overwhelming amount of information available can make it difficult to decide which data can most effectively be used to drive business decisions..

For example, there’s data that should always be considered when making business decisions. This includes demographics, such as your target market’s income, age, and gender. Knowing this information can help determine the prices you set and the type of marketing products and services that are most effective in gaining new tenants.

Easy Ways to Utilize Data

The easiest way to start using data in your facility today is by getting an in-depth understanding of your demographics and target market. For example, are most of your tenants college students? Is there an uptick in rentals during summer months when students return home? Knowing this can help you decide the best times of year to increase rent or offer discounts so that more students choose your facility over the competition. 

Is the income in your facility’s area particularly high or low? This knowledge will greatly affect what you can charge for a unit, as high-income areas have more disposable income to spend on self storage. Higher-income areas may also expect more features, such as wine storage or climate control. Without an understanding of your target market, you risk spending thousands of dollars on features that don’t interest your tenants.

As you begin the process of adopting data into your business decisions, remember that it doesn’t have to happen all at once. Start with smaller pieces of data or smaller decisions, and reevaluate regularly to make sure that the data and decisions still make sense and are working in tandem to create the most effective return on investment for your facility.