Automation is becoming the norm in many industries, and the self storage industry is one of them. If you’re teetering on the line between some automation and full automation, read this post and learn why full automation for self storage businesses is will become a necessity in the near future.
Many businesses have automated certain parts of their facilities, such as giving customers key automated features like the ability to make bookings online or having automated locking mechanisms for different units, whilst other businesses are seeing full automation and operating with zero staff.
COVID-19 has taken the global economy for a loop, and self storage owners need to look for creative and viable ways to rent out more units than ever before. It’s becoming clear that most businesses in the self storage industry need to reduce their operating costs and keep the customers they already have. Automation technology indeed provides tangible benefits for businesses in this industry.
There are loads of benefits of having a fully automated self storage facility. Here’s a short list of the most important ones:
It’s no secret that automation is a big part of today’s modern business, and customers are beginning to expect the convenience of automation when they interact with a service-based business. You’ll need to ensure that your customers can book online at their convenience and be able to open and move out of their unit with ease.
You would think that facilities with no employees present would be susceptible to break-ins, but that’s not necessarily true. Smart entry systems allow unit doors to be locked from the inside when closed, making them impossible to break into. Tailgating could still occur, but automated locks can guarantee that thieves will not be able to enter different units. Automated web apps for customers can allow them to unlock entry gates with Bluetooth technology, and automatically lock them behind them.
With automation, you’ll notice that your overhead costs are significantly reduced and virtually eliminated. Staff costs will be reduced, as you won’t require managers and employees overseeing your facilities. In terms of building costs, you won’t have to invest in a large office or an employee-only restroom, freeing up more space and further reducing overhead costs.
A significant benefit of a fully automated facility is that you’ll never really have to be there unless there is an emergency or a maintenance need. Cloud-based automation also makes it possible to lock non-paying clients out of their units, automatically open units for new clients, and provide security for gates, doors, and other parts of your facility.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, businesses in virtually all niches have examined how to keep their businesses afloat with little to no contact with other people. In this “new normal of self storage”, the industry has faced a similar issue- how to enable consumers to book their facility, check in, move their property into their unit, and check out with little interaction with other people? With automation, the ability to operate interaction-free is becoming a reality-- and lagging behind could be a bad business move.
Automating your self storage facility can actually be quite easy to do. All it takes is a little bit of help from some valuable automation tools. Storeganise is one great platform with multiple tools for automating one’s business.
Our customer-facing web app and operations web app can automate the booking process, provide logistics and inventory management, work virtually anywhere, and be fully customized for your specific brand.
If you’d like to learn more about automating your storage facility, book a demo and claim a free account.
Related Article: 7 Tips Before Setting Up Your Self Storage Facility
Frequently asked questions
How do you automate a self storage facility?
To automate a self storage facility you must use technology and digital tools to streamline processes and enhance customer convenience. Here are some easy steps to automate a self storage facility:
- Introduce online payments and autopay systems.
- Replace paperwork with digital documents.
- Offer self-service kiosks. Build an attractive website.
- Offer self-service reservations.
- Deploy software-based access control system for enhanced security.
- Automate communication channels. By implementing these automation strategies, you can enhance the efficiency of your self storage facility, allowing you to focus on providing excellent service to your customers.
Is self storage a good business model?
Yes, self storage is a good business model if managed effectively. Self storage facilities have the potential to generate substantial income, with annual earnings typically ranging from $365,000 to $800,000. Since, it is an essential service for many, there is high demand for self storage facilities, especially in urban areas. The benefits of self storage business models include low operating costs, steady income, scalability, flexibility, and growth opportunities. These benefits make it a lucrative and comparatively low risk business opportunity for investors.
What is the future outlook for self storage?
The future outlook for self storage looks promising. The global self-storage market has been growing steadily and is projected to continue its growth in the coming years. In 2021, the market was valued at $54 billion; by 2027, it is expected to reach $83.6 billion. This indicates a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.53% from 2022 to 2027.
What are the advantages of automated storage systems?
Automated storage systems offer several advantages.
- They help maximize floor space usage, reduce labor costs, and enhance picking accuracy and speed.
- With tighter inventory control, businesses can efficiently manage stock.
- Additionally, these systems improve ergonomics, ensuring a safer and more comfortable working environment.
- The reduction of manual work improves operational efficiency.
- An automated storage system enhances customer experience while maximizing customer satisfaction.
Who invented self-storage?
The concept of self storage was introduced by brothers Martin and John Bekins, who founded Bekin Van Lines in Omaha, Nebraska, in 1891. They built the first warehouse dedicated to storing personal and household items. Since then, self storage has become widely popular as a convenient solution for individuals to store their belongings.