I’m sure you’ve heard this before, “self storage is a recession-proof investment,” and while no one can promise any investment will work out, self storage is regarded to be an extremely profitable and steady industry. According to Bold Business, the industry is worth upwards of $38 billion in the United States alone. If your facility is struggling to remain relevance and profitability, you’re in the right place. Keep reading to make sure you’re taking advantage of opportunities for revenue growth.
Kiosks are out – online rental tools are in
Do you still have a rental kiosk at your facility? They’re outdated, and having one can actually cause problems with safety at your facility that you would’ve never imagined would be a problem. Why would you have people standing alone, potentially in the dark or during inclement weather performing monetary transactions? This sounds terrible right? It is. Don’t worry – we have a solution. After reading about the security flaws of a physical kiosk, I’m sure you’re wondering if there’s a better way to manage rentals. Upgrading your facility to an online rental tool has numerous benefits. Your facility can cut down on maintenance costs while increasing revenue. People are significantly more likely to rent from you if it’s convenient, and online rental tools allow them to reserve units in advance and pay online without having to leave their couch or car.
According to the Self Storage Almanac, 79% of renters use credit cards to move in, and in 2019, more people than ever are using smartphones for their shopping. If you’re picking out an online rental tool, look for one that operates as a Progressive Web App (PWA). This means that tenants can use it like a traditional app, but without having to use an app store to download it. Sounds complicated, but it’s not – PWAs show up on Google search results, where potential tenants are likely to search for available units in their area.
The Hispanic market
According to Pew Research, the Hispanic population in the United States has reached over 58 million people as of 2017. In regards to self storage, this is a crucial market that’s not being served correctly by self storage facilities. Do you have a bilingual employee? Does your online rental tool allow them to rent in Spanish? Make it as seamless a process as possible for Spanish-speaking customers, providing them the same resources and options that English speakers have in your facility. The Hispanic market is extremely loyal and is more apt to choose facilities that make significant efforts to ‘meet them halfway’ by communicating in Spanish. For example, our online rental tool ClickandStor® is multilingual!
Looking outside of your home market
Your town is great, but is it the best market to be in? Consider towns experiencing population growth such as Austin, Texas or Bend, Oregon. If you’re looking to expand and have found your local market to be saturated with too much competition, another city worth considering is Nashville. CNN states that almost 80 people move to Nashville every day – and with nearly 10% of U.S. households renting storage units according to the New York Times, that bodes well for self storage owners and operators. Larger towns and cities may be the solution if your business is struggling to stay afloat in a rural area.
As you grow your self storage facility and business, stay up to speed on the latest trends and technological advancements in the industry. While you certainly don’t need every shiny new product you see at a trade show, there are ways to increase your occupancy and revenue by automating rentals, growing your business in new cities, embracing new language markets, and more. Be sure to always look into all options when it comes to increasing revenue, don’t forget online rentals are key in today’s market and always remember it is better to be safe- than sorry!