Big data has disrupted lots of industries over the last few years. The marketing industry is one of the companies that has been most impacted. The manufacturing sector has also been touched by it in surprising ways. Of course, the bioengineering industry relies on big data more than ever, but some industries that you would never have expected are using big data. The self-storage industry is one of them.
Self-Storage Industry is Disrupted by Big Data
You may be surprised to hear that the self-storage industry is using big data more than ever. The industry may not seem high-tech, but it is striving to improve marketing, reduce the risk of theft and minimize vacancies. Data driven solutions are at the heart of all of this. The self-storage industry is currently in an upswing due to innovations in technology. With the older population downsizing and younger generation moving to cities, there is a shortage of storage space available. More companies are investing in the industry, building storage facilities to increase rental capacity. While much of this growth can be attributed to the increase in population, the evolution of self-storage technology has made the industry more competitive than ever. If you are interested in disrupting this older industry, here is a look at how technology is impacting self-storage operations. Big Data Driven Decisions Storage unit operators can base decisions on the abundance of data available to them. Many storage facilities can track data related to daily activities, rentals, income and sign ups. This allows you to track how profitable the facility is overall. With big data, owners can offer lower pricing to make up for slower months. Or, they can maximize the use of available space by raising rates as the storage center fills up. In many cases, it is possible to leverage existing data to penetrate a saturated market. With big data, you can make better decisions on pricing and availability. Mobile Rental Sign Ups Similar to the shift from ecommerce to mobile commerce, customers want the convenience of signing up for a storage unit from their phone. If you already have a website, you can simply optimize it for a mobile checkout experience. Alternatively, you can invest in a mobile app that would allow customers to sign up and choose their location right from their smartphone. Of course, this sign up process alleviates the stress of finding a location and then renting a unit. With mobile applications, the self-storage onboarding process is as streamlined as possible. Automated Kiosks on Site Additionally, technology makes it easier for customers to access their units on premise. Rather than having someone staffed at the facility 24 hours per day, you can simply have kiosks for common self-storage operations. Using kiosks, customers can sign up, access their unit and renew a lease. Using automated systems, the kiosk could grant customers access, verify license information and accept payments in a variety of ways. This automation saves costs for self-storage owners since they do not have to pay for additional employees. Meanwhile, the kiosks add extra convenience for customers who need access to their storage unit at any time. Certainly, the technology behind automated kiosks can contribute to the efficiency level of a storage facility. Digital Catalog of Your Items Next, this storage company in Seattle is leveraging cataloging software. This allows them to provide pictures of their items that are tied to a barcode. Using a list of barcodes, customers can easily go through a digital catalog of their belongings. Building on this technology, companies are able to deliver your items whenever you need it. This is known as full service storage. Without a proper cataloging system, it would be very difficult to create this next generation of tech driven self-storage facilities. Advanced Technology Security Systems The number of security options for storage units give you several options to upgrade. You can have well connected video cameras and security alarms. Combined with the Internet of Things changes, these cameras can be connected by a high speed internet system with redundancies in case something goes down. The advancements in video surveillance technologies give you and your customers peace of mind that the items are stored securely. Moreover, storage facilities need to take their customer’s data security seriously. Since customers are starting to keep digital catalogues of their stuff, it is essential that your facility keeps everyone’s information safe. These are some of the major implications technology is making on the self-storage industry. If you are in the industry, you will need to work fast to keep up with the changes that are being implemented. Many business decisions on pricing and availability are made using big data analysis. Customers can easily rent their own units from their phone, complete the checkout process and even request a pickup of their items. If they do decide to go into the facility, they can have 24-hour access and use a kiosk for basic operations. Moreover, self-storage units offer the option to catalog your items for easy management. Of course, security is paramount for customers to leave their stuff with you. With the advancements in technology, you can see how many ways the self-storage industry is impacted.
Big Data is Changing the Self-Storage Industry
The self-storage industry is being changed by big data in shocking ways. You should be aware of these trends and make sure that you use it to its fullest potential.