It was a road we were already travelling down, but Covid-19 turned it into a highway! Increasingly often, customers expect to be able to ‘self serve’ and find answers to their questions and needs directly from your website without needing to interact with a salesman.
From a self-storage industry perspective, that means we now need to be prepared to offer potential storers seamless digital experiences that provide answers and solutions to all their questions about unit availability, pricing, and sign-up processes. Ultimately, the more frictionless we make the purchasing journey and sign-up process – the more likely we are to convert a lead to a customer!
If you’re interested in taking your digital presence to the next level, we offer some great value add-ons for Storman Cloud that can give your customers more freedom and functionality. These add-ons can be connected to your website, ready and waiting for potential storers to make use of – reducing the chance of them throwing their hands up in the air and storing with your competitor, who already offers self service from their website! These add-ons can be customised to suit your branding requirements, are fully hosted and managed by Storman, and are great options if you’re just getting started with integration.
In today’s blog, we’ll be exploring some of the add-ons that Storman Cloud customers can connect to their website – and how they can help make self-storage facilities like yours more money!
Customers spend more and more time researching and evaluating their options online, particularly as Covid-19 pushed businesses to go contactless. If you’ve got a quality lead on your website, looking to commit to one of your units – you want them to commit to your facility now, rather than hoping they remember to call you the following business day, or that they find the time to pop by your office!
The Online Reservations add-on allows customers to select the size of unit they’re interested in, and see real-time availability and pricing that’s been pulled straight from Storman Cloud. From there, they can decide which one they’d like, and easily enter low-touch information such as their name, email address and phone number – offering a quick, frictionless experience to reduce the risk of abandonment.
This information is sent straight to Storman Cloud, where a customer record is created and the unit is reserved. This add-on can also be set up to take a booking fee or deposit during the process, if you’ve got an account with Ezidebit! If you’d like to see it for yourself, you can test out our Online Reservations add-on first-hand by clicking here.
Paper is a great and versatile material. But it also tends to build up very quickly, and before you know it, you’ve forgotten what the surface of your desk actually looks like (guilty as charged).
Online Move-ins will reduce that – it’s a fully paperless sign-up process for your self-storage facility. Customers can complete their paperwork digitally anywhere, anytime – whether it’s an iPad in your office, directly from your website, or from a ‘signup at home’ email link. Our Online Move-ins add-on allows your customers to fill in all of their details, e-sign online, set up recurring automatic payments from their card, and have their storage agreement contract sent as a PDF to their nominated email address – easy!
They can even do all of this while they are on the way to your facility with a trailer-load of furniture, as the add-on is completely integrated in real-time with Storman Cloud! A recent study by Smart Insights in 2020 found that with 52% of participants, over half of their purchasing decisions were heavily influenced by convenience – and with convenience as king, providing a simple online move-in process is a great way to set your facility apart from the rest and attract more customers.
If you’re keen to see it for yourself, why not try signing up online for our demo storage facility? Click here to give it a try!
The Consumer Payments Trend Analysis of 2019 revealed that a staggering 83% of people would prefer to pay their bills digitally, using a mobile device or website. Providing your customers with a convenient way to pay that suits their needs is a great first step towards reducing payment delinquency – and getting the right amount of money in your bank, at the right time.
This add-on lets you add a button wherever you’d like on your website, such as ‘pay online’ or ‘pay my account’, that leads customers to an online payment portal. This portal is closely matched to your storage facility brand and with your logo and website colours – like this example! Your customers can log in with their agreement number and password, view their current balance owing, and pay straight away using their credit card – which automatically reconciles in Storman Cloud for you.
A “pay now” link can also be added to all emails and text messages sent from Storman Cloud, making it even more convenient for your customers – and taking some of the legwork out of chasing payments for you and your team.
What else can I do to give my customers better online experiences?
Of course, these ready-made add-ons that we’ve talked about are just the beginning! If you’ve explored them all, and want to develop new and interesting ways for your leads and customers to interact with your facility, you might opt to engage a web developer and make use of the Storman Cloud API.
API stands for ‘Application Programming Interface’. Essentially, an API is a middleman – it allows different programs to interact with and understand each other. They provide your web developer with a list of commands, explain how to format them in a way the software will understand, and describe what data the commands will return. Armed with this list of commands, one program can then make an ‘API call’ to another program, and receive information for its own use. Two totally different pieces of software can now communicate in a meaningful way! This is how Storman Cloud speaks to your access control system, for example.
What can I do with the API?
This could be something as simple as the ability to submit an enquiry form on your website, that then automatically creates a lead in Storman Cloud for your team to contact. If you were looking for a more complex integration, why not work with a web developer to develop an integration that retrieves your unit sizes and their availability in real-time from Storman and displays them on your website, allowing your potential customers to browse and reserve storage space online?
Feeling slightly more adventurous? You might want to display all of your packing materials – like boxes, locks and bubble wrap – online with your very own boxshop (we’ve got a great partner who can help you out with that – check out Big Budda Boom here.)! You could then take sales and payments online, straight away – with either a delivery or a pickup in store option for the goods.
Because the API contains all the instructions on what data the programs can retrieve and how they can retrieve it, development work for features like the ones we’ve just explored is often simplified for your chosen web developer. This saves your business time and money, and gives you the keys to build new and exciting ways for your customers to interact with your business!