Did you see our article on automation in Mini-Storage Messenger last month? Automated self storage facilities are popping up everywhere, and storage customers are gobbling up self-service storage units left and right. Today’s modern consumer is very familiar with the kiosk model, having grew up using ATMs, airport self service kiosks, and movie-rental kiosks like Redbox.

So what’s the big deal with automation? It’s all about convenience and efficiency. Whether you’re interested in running a fully-automated self storage facility or just hoping to streamline parts of your storage business, you can start automating small features of your facility to improve efficiency and offer more self-service tools to customers.

If you didn’t get a chance to check out the MSM article, check out this short rundown. For more information on how to start using automated tools, check out the full article!

Old vs. new

The traditional self storage business model is simple, but effective, and it’s worked perfectly for over fifty years. Consumers need storage space, and self storage managers help to advise them on their storage needs and provide them with the right space. But with all the daily tasks self storage managers are expected to do, from collecting rent payments and managing delinquent tenants to cleaning out units and preventing unwanted pests, managers are left with little time to actually talk to new customers and build those vital relationships. That’s where automation comes in!

Automating certain parts of your business frees up time for managers to complete more important tasks, like following up on leads and ensuring customer satisfaction. Automating those annoying tasks that managers hate to do is a great way to supplement your growing storage business, reduce labor costs, and hit new goals and milestones that were previously unreachable.

No matter the size and scope of your self storage business, there are plenty of ways you can automate to grow your business and increase revenue. From running your facility completely unmanned with digital locks and online rentals, to simply automating rent collection or postal mail, there are dozens of scalable options for automation across all property types.

If you find yourself thinking, “there has to be an easier way to do this” when completing a task, that’s a great place to start looking at automation!

So where to start?

The most common reasons for introducing automation to your facility are:

  1. To make things easier for the customer
  2. To make things easier for the manager
  3. To reduce overhead costs

If one (or more!) of those three intrigue you, start exploring automation by checking out automated software tools and on-site self-service tools. You don’t have to dump a bunch of money into automation to start offering self-service tools to your customers or managers - you may already have free automated tools available to you through your software, website, or security access control systems.

For more ideas and information on how to start using self service tools at your facility, check out the full article on automated technology tools.

Thanks for reading! If you liked this article, you may also like: Creative ways to use two-way texting, Top 10 best blog posts to help you automate your self storage business, and The 7 biggest misconceptions about unmanned facilities.