Growth in Online Move in Technology in the Self Storage Industry

In a recent White Paper written by Open Tech Alliance, the leading providers of Insomniac kiosks and call centre technology, big increases are being seen by operators using not only self-service kiosks but also using online technology to book and pay for Self Storage spaces.

“This trend mirrors what we have noticed with customers using RapidStor technology,” Managing Director of Centreforce Technology Group, Dallas Dogger, said.

“We developed RapidStor online move in technology years ago. It started off very slowly, but sites every day now rent storage spaces to their customers online 24/7, and importantly, these rentals are often at full price.”

Consumer behaviour has changed and nowhere is it more noticeable than in the growth in online transactions in the Self Storage industry from 2014 to 2017. Both Open Tech Alliance and Centreforce Technology Group have seen the significant rise in the transaction numbers that come from online move in technology and kiosk use.

Online move in technology and payments are now impacting the Self Storage industry in Australia quite dramatically. There’s evidence to suggest Self Storage sites that use online move in and payment technology may have an edge over competitors that don’t use the same technology, one group claiming 8% of all rentals online.

“Customers are impatient,” Dogger said. “In the old days customers would ring up and chat to a person behind the counter. Sometimes it was the only way they could make a genuine enquiry for Self Storage.”

With online move in technology now providing an opportunity for a customer to browse through products, pick the product that they want and buy it immediately, the time spent renting the space is reduced.

In parallel with this new paradigm of customers buying online, customers are well educated in the products they wish to buy. With a wealth of knowledge at their fingertips, customers often embarrass ill-informed salespeople behind the counter who haven’t done their research into their own products or competitors.

Customers often already know what the prices are and what kind of deals they can get from your competitors before they even enter your store.

With online move in technology, the deal is presented to customers in real time as they interact with SiteLink Web Edition, displaying units available for rent, including any specials. The prospective customer selects that space, fills in a few details, and the deal is done, receiving only seconds later a completed Self Storage agreement.

Presenting the Self Storage agreement on site to the manager means a fast move in process that normally can take up to half an hour without this technology.

Online payment technology provides additional services to customers by giving them the flexibility to pay their accounts online at a time that is convenient to them rather than forcing them to pay within store operating hours.

Overall, the effective online payment strategy on your Self Storage website means you’re offering choice to your customer and allowing them to make the decision of when to pay. This is especially important if the customer is overseas or is in the forces. In store mobile and tablet capacity for online move ins helps to reduce the labour costs for owners.

It wasn’t that long ago that face-to-face communication between customers was the normal way of conducting business. With proven online technologies and payment interfaces, the amount of face-to-face communication has been reduced at the Self Storage facilities that use these online technologies.

Online payment technology, online move ins, online reservations, and self-service kiosks are all additional tools to make it easier for your customers to interact with your Self Storage facility. It’s important your customers are able to interact with your facility at a time that’s convenient to them, which may not always be during business hours.

Self Storage facilities that adopt these technologies are showing to their customers they’re prepared to provide additional convenient services for them to use, empowering them to interact with their customers more than just during business hours. That’s an important aspect of being competitive in the Self Storage marketplace of today.