Offering moving truck rentals as part of your self storage business takes your business to the next level. Let’s explore some of the major considerations before offering moving truck rentals.
Even in prudent times, growth is key to any company. Whether it’s to keep up with increasing demand or create a new revenue stream, every business should have scalable assets as part of its model. Offering moving truck rentals as part of your self storage business could be just the service to take your business to the next level.
If you are a self storage business owner, the most important question to ask yourself is if your business has the capacity to offer this service. When making this assessment, however, don’t just look at the capital available to invest in a truck - evaluate demand.
By definition, a self storage business needs the means to transport a client’s goods from a location to the storage facility and vice versa. Most clients without the means to do this themselves hire out third-party rental services to move their things for them. Offering a valet rental service as part of your self storage package allows you to meet a key customer need and control the transition process.
On the risk assessment side, a rental truck comes with its own overheads: capital investment, fuel, insurance, tracking services, maintenance, branding, a driver and administration. As a result, demand should be assessed to ensure that this is an asset that can pay for itself. We always suggest our clients to conduct feasibility studies to get an accurate estimate of business health and revenue opportunities.
The viability of a rental truck service will also depend on local factors, such as regional housing market trends and - in the current global pandemic - state regulations.
Health and safety certifications, as well as permits for crossing municipal lines, are important considerations. Any one of these factors could be a hindrance to your truck’s ability to produce revenue, so make sure you meet all your municipal and state guidelines for operation.
Your business model will also need a system to track costs, rentals, revenue and mileage. Don’t neglect the administrative side of operations.
Offering a rental service isn’t just about making your client’s life easier. The opportunity cost of relying on third-party services means you not only lose a potential revenue stream but a marketing avenue as well.
If your business doesn’t provide a truck rental service, a client can only find you for storage purposes. While this may be your primary goal, efficiency and supplementary income should be at the heart of this expansion effort. With a rental service, you have a secondary need that you can take advantage of in your marketing.
Building a single hub for all your customer’s needs creates a client-to-business ecosystem that increases your reach and returns on investment. If one advertisement can tell your client about your storage facility and your rental trucks, you’re paying once to showcase two services.
Rental trucks are also brand-ready assets. For the initial cost of outfitting your truck with the appropriate branding (chiefly the logo, company name, a snappy description and contact information) your service markets itself whenever the truck is in use.
When it comes to best practices for your rental service, it’s only right to start with the goldmine of the internet age – data. Fitting your truck with an adequate tracker system allows you to monitor your average service distance, which will help you make more informed decisions around your range of operations.
In the long term, range adjustments will be dictated not only by fuel and maintenance costs, but shifting regulations. Knowing the narrowest and widest range you can operate in without losing money will help your projections stay ahead of the curve.
An equally important practice will revolve around the human factor. Whether your truck driver is a new hire or an existing member of your staff, not only will they need to be in possession of the appropriate operating codes, but be trained as an extension of your company.
A driver who is not only skilled on the road but capable of being an ambassador to your brand when assisting clients will go a long way in building brand trust, securing strong reviews, and fuelling the most powerful marketing asset of any small and medium-sized business: word of mouth.
Ultimately, the decision to expand into the rental truck market is one that self storage business owners will have to assess for themselves, but the benefits are clear. Not only do rental trucks open up a new revenue stream that’s in demand with your current client base, but they offer a marketing avenue that feeds into both rental and storage.
When it comes to growth, such flexibility and efficiency should not be discounted.
At Storeganise, we make your business more efficient, automating every aspect of your self storage service. This includes facility and tenant management, online booking, monthly billing, tracking occupancy rates, and much more.
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