Storman reflects on what was probably one of the most challenging years ever!
2020 will always be remembered as the year everyone had to deal with the onslaught of a worldwide pandemic and the lucky ones among us came out of the other side with a better understanding of what it means to be resilient.
For many self storage businesses it was particularly hard or nearly impossible to work remotely and for some, they had to quickly adjust to a “mostly online” approach. Safety was at the heart of all decisions and we adjusted our sails to help our customers through some very challenging times. There is nothing like a crisis on a global scale to put into perspective the sheer determination of our industry.
COVID restrictions made more storers interact with self-storage businesses online as they used the internet to research pricing and availability, complete bookings, and make payments. For many self storage operators, the idea of a standard storage signup process moved very quickly from a ‘nice to have’ paperless approach, into an urgent, automated and contactless need. We saw a phenomenal increase in the uptake of contactless signups, as well as operators needing to access their software away from the office.
A busy year for Storman!
We added a lot of new features into Storman Cloud this year – here are some highlights:
- The new Storman Cloud invoice designer gives more ways to style your invoices.
- An “advanced customer search” was added to help find virtually anything easily!
- Storman has reimagined the facility map in Storman Cloud. It is bolder, more beautiful and so much easier to use and set up! It provides an innovative way for our users to interact with a visual representation of their facility.
- Our new knowledge base and support portal was released, filled with lots of articles and videos to help our users find the information they need.
- Our Storman (online) move-ins addon was quickly adapted and improved to provide storers the ability to:
- signup from home,
- signup from your website,
- signup in store on an iPad or tablet,
- have the latest storage agreement from the SSAA.
- We’ve made adding payments into Storman Cloud much easier, especially for those who have customers deposit directly into your facility bank account – no more opening each account one by one!
We love to hear your feedback about our product – it’s all taken onboard and communicated to our product design team. If you have a suggestion for our products and services, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A key milestone reached!
We were very excited when we reached a key milestone in September, where over half of our customers have now adopted Storman Cloud! Customer feedback has been great and they love the good looking and simplified screens, access from anywhere and the convenience of overnight processing as it “just happens”!
Storers are also enjoying the ability to sign up from anywhere. This feature was described recently by one of our Victorian customers as a “godsend” due to lock down restrictions. The facility was able to continue to trade and provide a much needed service to the local community.
New cloud based access control integrations
This year, we partnered with two new access control providers and their latest products. Both of these access control products work with Storman Cloud to provide a true cloud-to-cloud integration.
All Secure Self Storage in New Zealand chose ICT Protege GX™ as their access control system and asked us to build an integration with Storman Cloud.
“We positioned our business to be ready for the future and to be in a position to offer the best and latest technology to our customers.” – Keith Edwards – owner.
We have used Storman Software for over 10 years now and have been thoroughly impressed with their product. They have recently partnered up with ICT to develop some new systems which have been extremely beneficial to us. Great service and a great team! Nick Brennand – All Secure Self Storage – manager
The second cloud based integration was with Nokè™ (pronounced “No key”). Nokè™ allows facilities and storers to have completely keyless access and entry, with everything driven by an app installed on your smartphone. Our first Nokè™ integration went live in mid November and a second is soon to follow! We’re excited to announce this new Storman Cloud integration with Nokè™
Both products provide great glimpses into how self storage access control can be used in the future.
Website integrations everywhere!
A number of our clients integrated their websites with Storman Cloud this year using our new cloud based API. The largest integration project we did was with Storage King, helping them to integrate their new website with Storman Cloud to provide an online booking system and box shop. The website went live in May 2020 and it was a great success!
What does 2021 have in store?
We can’t always predict the future, but here are some of the exciting things we have planned for the start of 2021!
- Bulk customer communications will be coming in quarter one of 2021 to Storman Cloud. This will allow customers to mass communicate with storers for reasons like announcements, marketing and general updates.
- We’re adding great new features for our multisite users, such as accessing the availability at another facility, as well as transferring leads and inventory to another site to name a few.
- There will be further developments to our cloud based access control partners.
- For our users without cloud based access control systems we have a new lightweight application to handle communication between Storman Cloud and your gate.
As we wave 2020 goodbye, we would like to thank our customers for their support during this challenging year and to take this opportunity to wish everyone the best for 2021!
We’re looking forward to a little down time over the holidays and starting the new year with renewed energy!