Self Storage Industry Blog

What You Need to Know About the Google Possum Algorithm Update

Jana Haecherl |10 Oct 2016 |9 min read

Wondering what's up with local search rankings lately? Here's everything you need to know about Google's 'Possum' algorithm update.

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After the Show: Our Top 10 Favorite Ways to Enjoy Vegas

Jana Haecherl |31 Aug 2016

Heading to the SSA Fall Conference & Trade Show? Read this to make sure you get the most out of your Las Vegas trip with these tips from Vegas veterans and foodies!

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Pokémon Go: Good or Bad for Your Self Storage Business?

Jana Haecherl |22 Aug 2016

You’ve heard about businesses successfully marketing to Pokémon Go players, but will it work for your self storage facility? We looked at the growing trend and its applications to the self storage industry.

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4 Ways to be Successful at Online Reviews and Business Listings

Jana Haecherl |12 Aug 2016

Managing your online reviews and business listings can seem overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. Check out these tips to master your online presence.

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How to Take Your Facility Logo From Blah to Bold

Jana Haecherl |29 Jun 2016

Is your logo looking a little stale? Check out our guide on redesigning your logo and refreshing the face of your brand.

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18 Things People Hate About Your Website

Jana Haecherl |15 Jun 2016

Oh, website, sweet website, how do thy customers hate thee? Let me count the ways. These 18 little PSAs go out to all the bad websites around the world.

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How to Clean Up Your Website's Content

Amy Daniels |29 Feb 2016

Rather than staring at your website and wondering how to get started, let this guide take you through the steps. You’ll learn how you can use your content to increase your site’s visibility and prompt leads to become customers.

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How to Embrace Pinterest for Your Business

Amy Daniels |08 Feb 2016

One of the most compelling reasons for storage operators to use Pinterest is the fact that its users are strikingly similar to the core demographic for self storage renters. Learn how to embrace Pinterest in this post!

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A Quick & Easy Guide to Social Media [Infographic]

Amy Daniels |28 Jan 2016

Social media is a topic that every business owner has thought about. Check out our infographic for interesting facts about social media and steps you can take to engage your target audience!

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Top 10 Blogs That Will Help You Understand SEO

Amy Daniels |20 Jan 2016

Maybe you know a lot about SEO already, or perhaps you feel even more lost every time you try to learn more. Wherever you fall on the spectrum, the articles below can help you move forward.

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Why You Need High Quality Media in Your Online Marketing

Erich Noack |11 Jan 2016

High-quality media can have a positive effect on your website's ranking and your ability to attract new customers, but is it really that important to your online marketing success? With the new packages available from storEDGE, you can get ahead of the competition.

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Top 10 Blogs That Will Make You a Better Marketer

Amy Daniels |18 Dec 2015

You probably already know that marketing is a crucial part of your business. We think it’s important, too, which is why I pulled all of our blogs related to marketing and looked at their data in Google Analytics to determine our top ten. Check them out!

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What Has the Best Value: Your Content or Links?

Amy Daniels |28 Oct 2015

If you’re a storage operator hoping to improve your brand recognition and online visibility, chances are you don’t have devoted content or link building teams to care of these projects for you. So, is Google more likely to reward creating regular content or building sold links back to your site? Let's find out!

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3 Brilliant Advertising Campaigns and What You Can Learn from Them

Amy Daniels |29 Sep 2015

Advertising is so much more than creating pretty materials. If you’ve bought ad space for your company and didn’t see an immediate jump in leads, you know this fact is true. Both marketing and advertising are about establishing a mutual connection with your customers.

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Link Building & Self Storage

Amy Daniels |14 May 2015

Link building is an intimidating and confusing term. But by doing a bit of reading, you may find that there are some simple steps you can take yourself, capitalizing on its benefits without getting sucked into paying for services you don’t need.

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A Manager's Guide to SEO

Amy Daniels |12 May 2015

There are several complex aspects of search engine optimization, many that involve your facility owner’s budget, vision, and resources. But as a self storage manager, there are many steps you can take to better reach your customers and improve your website’s SEO.

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The Importance of Adding High-Quality Images to Your Website

Erich Noack |02 Mar 2015

While original content, keywords, and meta tags can do wonders to develop your SEO, there’s one major, often overlooked factor that contributes to your site’s rankings: high-quality images.

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The Pros and Cons of Outsourcing Your Web Marketing Services

Erich Noack |20 Feb 2015

The truth is, among the myriad of companies and services out there, you must weigh your time, resources, and the overall cost to determine when to hire and when to do it yourself.

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The Foolproof Guide to Making Fantastic Promotional Videos

Tim Schlee |26 Sep 2014

Looking for that something extra to push your online marketing a little further? Video might be just what the doctor ordered.

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4 Things You Didn't Know about Web Content

Tim Schlee |05 Sep 2014

We've gone over the basics of writing website content before, but I'm here to let you in on a few secrets. They're not always pretty. They sometimes mean more work for you (or your writer). But they work.

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Don't Get Duped by the Domain Registry of America: How to Avoid Web Domain Scams

Tim Schlee |27 Jun 2014

Domain name scams are as old as, well, domain names, but there’s one in particular that, like the proverbial cockroach, just won’t seem to die.

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How to Use Google+ to Improve Your SEO

Tim Schlee |16 Apr 2014

By integrating seamlessly with Google’s own search results, a Google+ page can allow you to improve your SEO in ways that you could only dream of with Facebook or Twitter.

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How to Increase Engagement on Twitter

Tim Schlee |07 Mar 2014

In this post, I’ll take a look at what the best brands are doing on Twitter to maximize user engagement.

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Using Analytics to Measure the Success of Your Self Storage Marketing Campaign

Tim Schlee |28 Feb 2014

The most important part of any marketing campaign is the analysis after it’s over. Was it successful? Did it produce an increase in leads and rentals for your storage facility? If you can’t answer these questions, then you can’t know whether your campaign was worth the money.

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How To Run Your Self Storage Social Media in 30 Minutes a Week

Andrea Hewitt |19 Feb 2014

If you aren’t using social media as a marking tool, you’re missing the boat. Maybe you’re worried that running a social media page properly is going to eat up a lot of your time.

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7 Simple Steps to Improve Your Social Media Presence

Tim Schlee |27 Dec 2013

You’ve got your social media profiles up and running, but now you have to gain a following. It can certainly seem overwhelming with sources all over the internet telling you a thousand different things you need to do to optimize your social media presence.

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6 Tips for Running Your Storage Facility's Social Media Accounts

Amy Daniels |30 Sep 2013

Social media facilitates online dialogue that happens in real-time. If there's conversation about your facility, you may want to consider how you can best engage in the interactions.

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To PPC or Not to PPC, That is the Question…

Sara Heins |16 Aug 2013

At StorageAhead, we have several customers who want to begin PPC campaigns; here's what we tell them, and why we think your efforts are better spent on enhancing your site with SEO techniques instead.

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How to Write Stellar Facility Descriptions on Your Storage Site

Sara Heins |02 Aug 2013

Describing your storage facility on your website just got easier with StorageAhead's guide to writing the best "About Us" paragraphs on the web. From unique content to SEO tips, our comprehensive blog will help make your locations stand out!

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Recap of storEDGE's Lead Tracking & ROI Webinar

Sara Heins |01 Aug 2013

Earlier today, Alex Bernath (Business Development) took us through his Lead Tracking &ROI Webinar. We realize everyone might not have been able to tune in so we've recapped it for you here!

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View StorageAhead's SEO Audit Webinar Online Now!

Sara Heins |24 May 2013

Our webinar from Wednesday, May 22 is up online and ready to view! If you couldn't make it to the live showing, be sure to check it out now for tips on how to improve your web marketing presence.

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Is Rebranding the Right Move for Your Storage Facilities?

Sara Heins |07 May 2013

Considering rebranding or renaming your storage facilities? Read our blog before you make your final decision; rebranding, although great for your marketing efforts, can wreak havoc on your search engine optimization.

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Quick and Dirty Local SEO

Sara Heins |24 Apr 2013

The most basic step you can take to improve your site's SEO is clearly including your name, address & phone number.

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4 Benefits of Blogging for Your Storage Facility

Sara Heins |12 Apr 2013

StorageAhead delves into the top four reasons why it's time to start writing weekly posts for your self storage website. From helping your site's ranking to sharing advice with potential renters, blogging is key in today's era.

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How to Write a Press Release in the Self Storage Industry

Sara Heins |28 Mar 2013

Read on to learn the basics of press release writing to step up your public relations and marketing efforts.

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Building a Successful Website

Tom Cox |27 Mar 2013

Knowing how to build a successful website can be tough, but it's critical for finding renters in such an online-based world. Guest blogger and Strat Prop Management Inc manager, Tom Cox, offers a few tips to rank highly in the search engines.

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Website Hygiene: Does Your Site Structure Stink?

Sara Heins |26 Mar 2013

You’re reading up on SEO, sitting through the webinars, blogging and linkbuilding like a pro… But you’re still not seeing improvements in your website’s search ranking? The culprit could be your website’s structure. No matter how diligent you are with your off-page SEO, if your on-page structure stinks the search bots will pass you by.

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Which Customers Should You Target?

Kendra Bozarth |26 Mar 2013

Self storage is utilized for an array of situations, and that means a wide variety of different customers will visit your facility each day. It’s important to consider which groups of people use storage most and which features those prospective tenants look for. Here, we’ve created four profiles for the most common renters in self storage and which particular amenities best service their needs

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Should I be Branding My Storage Facility on Twitter and Facebook?

Sara Heins |23 Jan 2013

We’re not saying to completely ignore the social sphere, though. Social media can most certainly be beneficial (in a less direct way) in regards to your website’s organic search results.

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An In-Depth Guide in Adding Video to Your SEO Strategy

Sara Heins |20 Dec 2012

Previously, we discussed the value of video in terms of SEO, but now we want to show you how to go about adding this aspect to your SEO strategy.

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I’m Dreaming of Localized SEO, Increased Leads, and a White Christmas [VIDEO]

Sara Heins |17 Dec 2012

If Santa were dedicated to the self storage industry, he would probably deliver lots of hygienic, paying renters to facilities all over the world. Alas, that kind of haul would require an army of elves with ever-evolving proficiency in SEO—a learning curve that’s more exhausting than knowing the latest in extreme graphic chipset processors.

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The 7 Deadly Sins of Linkbuilding (and Why You Should Avoid Them)

Tom Cox |17 Dec 2012

Linkbuilding is an efficient form of web marketing, but these seven black hat tricks will penalize your efforts and lower your ranking on search engines.

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Looking for a Boost in Search Engine Visibility? Add Video to Your SEO Strategy

Sara Heins |17 Oct 2012

Many people don’t realize this, but YouTube has recently become the second-largest search engine behind Google, which coincidentally owns YouTube. This has given rise to a duality in video search. Since engines also include videos in search engine results pages (SERPs), chances are quite good a video uploaded to YouTube will also show up in Google search results, as part of a “blended search.” Blended search is the practice in which search engines display videos, images, news stories, maps, and other types of results alongside their standard search results, and it has become increasingly common on major search engines.

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Are you a Click Crook? Offensive Clicking Harms Everybody

Sara Heins |22 Aug 2012

Are you one of the nearly 70% of self storage operators who markets on the web? If so, odds are you’re spending some of your marketing budget on pay-per-click (PPC) ads—managed either by you or by a service provider like StorageFront.

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Self Storage Can be Twitter Savvy Too

Sara Heins |05 Aug 2012

Ever think of twitter as a capacity to communicate directly with renters and secure their unit through social media? While there’s no way to track such leads like you can through StorageFront.com, Twitter is a reasonable and amiable way to reach out to customers and take care of their storage unit needs.

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Google Search Changes Make Google+ Pages More Relevant

Sara Heins |17 Jul 2012

So what’s the point in having a Google+ page for your self storage business if the search terms that you’re battling for don’t show up in Search Plus Your World? For one thing, the more places you’re found, the better.

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Spelling for SEO

Sara Heins |15 Jul 2012

Whenever I read a book and come to a misspelled word, it takes me about 10 seconds before I can move on. Books should be better than that. A publishing company has deemed that collection of words worthy for publication, worthy of a binding and a cover. There is just something special about books. They should be above mistakes. After all, doesn’t that copy go in front of many, many sets of eyes before I, the reader, see it?

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10 Questions to Ask Before Hiring an SEO “Expert” for Self Storage Marketing

Sara Heins |23 Jun 2012

Before engaging in any discussion with a search engine optimization (SEO) vendor, it’s wise to do a bit of reconnaissance. A few observations and analytical snapshots will tell you if a company is worth talking to. Google them. Bing them. Study their website design, code, keywords, links, anchor text, flexibility and optimization.

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Cross-Promotion: The New Frontier for Self Storage Marketing

Kendra Bozarth |23 Jun 2012

Cross-promotion is an effective way to market your self storage facility. Team up with an industry-related business in your community, and increase your market presence.

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SEO Best Practices: The Proof is in the Puddin’

Sara Heins |15 Feb 2012

Here at StorageAhead, we are constantly harping on our self storage clients about best practices in search engine optimization –the “unpaid” organic type. Just take a look back through this blog and you’ll see: Most articles cover SEO topics and trends that may help self storage operators understand how to get ahead in search.

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Customer Reviews and Self Storage: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

Sara Heins |20 Jan 2012

Customer reviews carry more weight than your self storage website. Hard to believe, but that’s what new research is telling us: That online reviews and customer input may have a greater impact on the reputation of a small local business than its own web pages.The reason?  Peer trust outweighs people’s faith in business.

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A Lesson to be Learned from Kodak

Sara Heins |12 Jan 2012

The news that Eastman Kodak would be filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the coming months made me sit back and think. Not only would this be another tragic end for the inventor of Kodak Films, but how could such a powerhouse crash so prematurely? After all, they were once the dominating force when it came to film prints and even led the way for digital photography in the early 2000s. But their downfall began when they didn’t anticipate and recognize new consumer trends; they failed to react with the new information in hand. They failed to adapt to the changing market even though they knew it was inevitable. So how could this have happened with such a juggernaut?

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How to Make Sure Your Web Presence Reaches the Hipster Masses

Sara Heins |03 Jan 2012

What’s the worst attitude you can have about your web presence? Listen up, you hipster whiners who like your websites all pretty and user-interfacey. It’s time for you to meet Don Chernoff, the man behind a sweet little suitcase called SkyRoll.

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Tweet Toolbox: How Ten Simple Tools Make Twitter Work for Me (Part 2 of 2)

Sara Heins |20 Dec 2011

If you manage one account – socializing on behalf of your company or your personal brand – Twitter itself is probably an adequate application for the job. It’s fun and user-friendly. For tweeting on-the-go, you can download the Twitter app for your Smartphone. (As of this writing, running the redesigned Twitter website from your iPhone is a pain in the arse.)

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Tweet Toolbox: How Ten Simple Tools Make Twitter Work for Me (Part 1 of 2)

Sara Heins |20 Dec 2011

Twitter’s rapid growth is showing no signs of slowing. Even though the social network seems like a communications tool built just for oddly obsessed foodies and short attention span narcissists, it plays host to more than 300 million accounts today and is growing at a rate of close to three-quarters of a million accounts daily. Yep, 10 more accounts are signed up every second. We can’t all be loonies, can we?

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The Battle for Web Visibility: Google Maps

Sara Heins |18 Dec 2011

When Steve Chaires received his local yellow pages book recently, he was mad. But his anger was tempered by the realization that what he was so upset about probably didn’t matter all that much.Chaires, who owns Advanced Moving and Storing in Tallahassee, Fla., looked up his listing to discover that the print was too small for him to read.

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Google+ Pages for Business Yield Search Advantages

Sara Heins |22 Nov 2011

Google+ opened up a new service for businesses and brands, Google+ Pages, last week. Many businesses tried to set up G+ pages when the network launched in July and had their Pages deleted (Google was only allowing personal accounts), so there’s clearly a business marketing interest in the networking platform. But if you’re not ESPN or The New York Times, what’s the advantage of being on Google+? Will you just get lost in the shuffle?

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Why (and how) Location-Based Services Should be Utilized in Self Storage

Sara Heins |25 Sep 2011

Google Places, Yahoo Local, Foursquare, Groupon. We all hear these words. And while many owners and managers don’t understand what they are and how they can be utilized, it doesn’t mean they should be ignored. Location-based services, come in many different shapes and sizes.

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Q & A with Online Hispanic Marketing Expert Carla Briceno

Sara Heins |19 Aug 2011

When I started researching for my story about marketing to Hispanics online for Inside Self Storage Magazine, I quickly figured out the foremost authority on the subject was Carla Briceno.

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The Magic* of SEO

Sara Heins |03 Aug 2011

The other day it was quitting time at work and a couple of us gathered around a computer monitor, talking about the new fall television shows, and wanting to check out one of J.J. Abrams’ newest creations: Alcatraz. Unsatisfied with my coworker’s search terms in Google to bring about the proper sneak peek video I had already seen, I took over his computer and typed in a few keywords that I knew would get me the results I wanted. I was right, but was surprised by the fact that my own blog showed up fourth in organic results.

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Social Influence and SEO: Is Clout the Cherry on the Optimization Cupcake?

Kendra Bozarth |10 Jul 2011

Does social media influence SEO and your site’s standings on search results? We discuss social media and how it impacts your web presence online.

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Self Storage Mad Hatters: Black Hat, White Hat, and the Dangers of Buying Links for SEO

Sara Heins |24 Apr 2011

Black hat tactics are originally conjured up by clever hackers who figure out how to game a search engine’s system. Then, SEO “specialists” around the world quickly catch on and trace the hackers’ steps in droves. To-date, more than a dozen black hat tactics have come to light.

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Twitter for Self Storage Operators & Movers, Part 6: Tweeters & Tools

Sara Heins |23 Apr 2011

Here it is, my friends: The final chapter on using Twitter for self storage & movers’ marketing. I hope this section serves you well as a quick reference guide while you become more strategic with your tweets. Here’s what’s covered:  Tweet Key ,  Twitter Goodies ,  Accessory Sites , and  Industry Tweeters .

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Twitter for Self Storage Operators & Movers, Part 5: How to Tweet

Sara Heins |23 Apr 2011

Lots of different people use Twitter in lots of different ways, and the medium is still evolving. Anyway, it’s not about marketing so much as connecting. Twitter gives people the opportunity to converse, to know and like each other, to build trust—quickly and succinctly. So let’s get started… What should you tweet?

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Twitter for Self Storage Operators & Movers, Part 4: What’s Your Story?

Sara Heins |23 Apr 2011

At StorageFront, we’re in the business of web marketing for self storage. Before starting this company I spent 15 years marketing businesses in a bunch of different industries. I love marketing like hippies love hemp. So you can imagine my unease when I hear operators in this industry say, “Brand doesn’t really factor into a renter’s decision unless you’re a national chain, like Public Storage or Extra Space. Just throw a logo together and write something about me.”

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Twitter for Self Storage Operators & Movers, Part 3: Building a Following

Sara Heins |23 Apr 2011

Let’s start off Part 3 in this series with the wise words of marketing guru Seth Godin. Godin writes endlessly about breaking out of traditional marketing’s broadcast-box and finding new ways to effectively engage customers.

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Twitter for Self Storage Operators & Movers, Part 2: Getting Started

Sara Heins |23 Apr 2011

It’s interesting to note that many companies choose to glue a human face onto their corporate tweets. They assign one person to actively monitor, participate in and engage others on Twitter throughout the day. Some of these corporate profiles even show “Who’s Tweeting” information via custom-designed art and avatar (that little image that shows up next to all of your messages).

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Twitter for Self Storage Operators & Movers, Part 1: Why I Love Twitter

Sara Heins |23 Apr 2011

I am addicted to Twitter. So addicted, in fact, that the marketing team here at StorageAhead openly teases about my attentiveness to tweets (just take a look at CJ’s StorageFront news release.

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Local Search: The Key to Web Success for Self Storage

Sara Heins |18 Apr 2011

It seems like old news that more than 80 percent of North American consumers go online to check out potential purchases, competitive pricing, consumer ratings and other factors before they spend. Nowadays it just makes sense; if a person has a computer or mobile phone, why look anywhere else? The Internet can serve up timely, inclusive information and word-of-mouth guidance almost instantly.

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SEO is out, BSO is in! See the Future of Self Storage Marketing

Sara Heins |01 Apr 2011

Sure, our specialties are sweet web design and search optimization for the niche market. But we’re always brainstorming new ways for our clients to fill their storage units. We strive to be diverse and flexible, so we can help our clients lure customers in off the streets—customers who don’t just rely on Google and 3G phones to find local space, but also rely on their noses.

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Self Storage Customer Reviews: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Sara Heins |14 Mar 2011

After four days of little sleep and much learning about SEO, SEM, and everything in between at SMX West in San Jose (a search marketing conference), I feel like I just went back to college. I was happy that there was no final exam, but I am going to treat this blog post as my final anyway. Feel free grade the usefulness of my post.

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Why Web Visibility is Critical to Self Storage Success

Sara Heins |01 Mar 2011

StorageFront recently ran a sales experiment on our better performing Basic (unpaid) listings. The results stunned virtually everyone in our office. Chris Klein and Marc Smith spoke with several of the operators in our database who responded that they don’t have Internet access. Not only that, but they don’t even have a web page or so much as an online phone book listing!

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Calculating Your Social Media Return on Investment (ROI)

Sara Heins |27 Feb 2011

You’ve been hearing that you need to increase your social media presence by signing your facility(ies) up for Facebook and Twitter. You’ve even attempted to start a blog. But at what expense? How can you accurately measure your return on investment, affectionately known as ROI.

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The Search Shift Part 4: Online Brand Equity (What People Trust)

Sara Heins |23 Nov 2010

Once upon a time, the Internet was the Great Level Playing Field of Commerce. Businesses large/known and small/unknown could compete for the same online visitors without spending seven figures on marketing. Those days are long gone.

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The Search Shift Part 3: Browsing Behavior (What People Are Looking At)

Sara Heins |23 Nov 2010

In the world of SEO, you’ll probably  be hearing the word “clickstream” more and more. A clickstream, or “search funnel” as some marketers call it, is a record of what a web user clicks while browsing online. In theory, every web page requested in a clickstream will generate a signal, giving Google insight into what users prefer to see.

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The Search Shift Part 2: Social Signals (What people are talking about)

Sara Heins |23 Nov 2010

Social-based signals can be highly valuable to Google because they serve as pointers from human users who, in previous search generations, couldn’t “vote” for content with emotion and commendation. With the inclusion of social signals, Google will take what people like or share into consideration. Your friends – as opposed to brainless bots – will actually influence what you see online.

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The Search Shift Part 1: How Google Will Assess Websites in the Future

Sara Heins |23 Nov 2010

In last month’s article, we explained how a website’s position in Google results is largely determined by what other sites are saying about it—particularly in links. Indeed, we wrote that inbound links to your self storage site from other reputable, related websites may determine up to three-quarters’ worth of your Google rank.

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Set Up Your Local Listings (Google, Yelp, CitySearch, MerchantCircle)

Sara Heins |16 Oct 2010

Don’t know a lot about local listings? You are not alone. The web’s local marketing landscape is rapidly changing, what with search engine and listing giants like Google, Bing and Yelp all vying for local ad dollars. In the midst of all that evolution, it can be difficult to figure out where, what and how to market your business effectively.

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