This article originally appeared in the March 23, 2016 issue of The List Self Storage Newsletter.
For years, consumers have used computers, smartphones, and tablets in their everyday lives. In May 2013, just 16% of all internet searches were conducted from mobile devices. By December 2014, mobile searches accounted for 34% of all internet traffic. In 2015, Google confirmed that users were conducting more searches from their mobile devices than they were from desktop computers.
So, how do these numbers affect your storage facility? In order to be competitive in today’s mobile market, it may be time for your facility to implement technology that allows your customers to complete the rental process in a way that suits their schedules.
Revenue from mobile commerce is estimated to grow from $72 billion in 2013 to $245 billion in 2017. It’s clear that mobile consumers are doing more than searching — they’re ready to buy. As you update the technology at your property, consider three main reasons why consumers love using their mobile devices to find businesses and complete purchases:
They can use their mobile devices anytime and at their own pace.
Their phones allow them to use technology in a way they’re accustomed to.
They can have a sense of independence and find information on their own.
It’s crucial to appeal to these needs as you choose your technology. To be successful, you have to make it easy for customers to find answers about your facility and to ultimately make the choice to rent with you.
From searching to renting to moving out, you can provide technology that makes your customers’ experience easier every step of the way. Some ideas include:
A mobile-friendly website with functionality like click-to-call and online reservations.
Online Rental Centers that let tenants complete the entire move-in process on their own device.
Smartphone applications that can send payment reminders and news about your facility.
A management software that allows you to have two-way texting conversations with leads and customers.
Your office doesn’t need to be open 24/7 to provide round-the-clock service to your customers. In fact, 9 out of 10 consumers keep their phones within reach 24/7. By implementing technology like those listed above, you make it easier for your leads to choose your business over the competition.
Providing great customer service and smart technology are not mutually exclusive. Remember that the lines between in-store and online interactions are blurred — 50% of consumers who purchased from a retailer online also had an in-store experience in that same period, and more than 25% of in-store shoppers have interacted with the retailer online in the last 3 months.
Build upon your foundation of solid customer service by implementing mobile technology that allows customers to work at their own pace, enjoy a sense of independence, and ultimately, love the process of renting with you.
If you liked this article, you may also like: Interview: Self Storage Industry Technology Trends, What’s the Story Behind Google’s Mobile Update?, 3 Buzzwords That Help You Win Customers, and 4 Kinds of Technology Your Property Needs.