As a self-store business owner, your customer service style can be the difference between securing that next tenant, or losing them to a nearby competitor.
You won’t get people visiting your storage yard just to have a look around, like you would a shop front. They’re not looking to browse; they’re coming to for a very specific reason, whether that be to rent a space, pay their bill or discuss an issue with their unit.
It’s up to you as the operator of the business to ensure that all issues are dealt with, and enquiries resolved in a realistic time frame.
Your customer communications is a vital component of your self-store business, especially when you consider that every single one of your competitors is offering more or less the same service. Therefore, it’s those added personal touches that will ultimately set you apart from the rest.
In this blog, we’ll be looking at ways that you can manage and improve your self-store customer service approach.
For any B2C organisation, it’s crucial that management and employees are representing the values of that business in the right.
This counts more so for a self-store business, since tenants can come and go as they please, and may never require human interaction. However, should they need to speak to someone on the site, it’s important that your staff have the willingness and energy that defines the brand you’re trying to build.
If you find that your business values are not prominent, then it’s important to look at ways to make them stand out for the good of your tenants.
Now that we’re hopefully heading back to something that resembles normality, after a difficult few years, it’s important that you show yourself to be available to the customers and offer those extra personal touches.
Remember, self-store is a unique industry, in that you’re offering your customers exactly the same service as your competitors as we mentioned earlier, so it’s vitally important that you’re doing everything you can to set yourself out from the crowd.
Even something as simple as greeting someone personally and ensuring they know that you’re the face of the business can go a long way.
Obviously, it’s not possible to be available 24/7, but modern technologies have come a long way in ensuring that tenants are able to access the services they want, when they want them. For example:
- The innovative Store Log Flog app features a range of benefits for store yards, and allows tenants to contact the store yard through the two-way chat feature to arrange visits, manage their storage requirements remotely and even onboard new customers in the local area all through the app. The app will also send out push notifications to your customers to communicate any new changes, new offers, provide links to surveys for increased customer engagement and satisfaction.
- Self-service smart kiosks can be installed around the property to allow current tenants to manage payments and access their storage, some even allow new customers to select their storage requirements and pay remotely.
Whichever technology you prefer to supplement your customer service approach, be sure to check in with your current tenants and any new customers that have signed up remotely, they’ll appreciate the personal touch.
Increase Your Touch Points
Phone calls are one thing when it comes to your customer touch points, but they really are just the start.
Nowadays self-store facilities are utilised by a wider range of age groups than ever before. A recent survey by FEDESSA, looked at the percentage of those in different ages groups who were looking to utilise self-storage in the next twelve months:
- 18-24 – 18% (said they would be considering using self-store within twelve months).
- 25-34 – 17%
- 35-44 – 19%
- 45-54 – 10%
- 55+ – 10%
This tells us that no one kind of communication method will suit every age demographic, and therefore it’s crucial that your business is open to operating on as many communication channels as possible.
These days, customers may wish to contact you with a phone call, through WhatsApp, Messenger, Instagram, the Store Log Flog app, or any other of the major communication platforms. If you aren’t opening your business out to these opportunities and your competitors are, then they’ll be the ones winning more custom.
Even if you aren’t completely familiar with the ways of digital communication, it’s important that you either take the time to familiarise yourself with them, or find someone within your organisation that is comfortable managing the enquiries that come through these platforms.
Stay in Touch
We’ve already covered the value of keeping in touch with current and new tenants, but it’s also a good idea to keep in touch with your previous tenants too. That’s not to say you need to sell them anything, but keep them up to date on what the business is doing with regular news updates through email or text.
This was a particularly important point during the height of the pandemic, when many were in need of reassurance and a familiar face, some tips for staying in touch, include:
- A thank you card or a personal phone call to thank each tenant who is moving their items away from your yard can be a clever way of cementing customer loyalty, with those added personal touches we mentioned earlier.
- If you’re offering a new service or something of that nature, let them know about it. This doesn’t need to be a hard sell by any means, it can just simply be you getting in touch and having a chat.
Understand Customer Requirements
While it’s true that every customer coming to your yard will be looking for some form of storage space, your role as a leader in the organisation means you must really listen and understand the needs of each customer.
Your sales ability is significant in your role as a manager, but by listening to your customer and really understanding exactly what it is they’re looking for, you can offer an unparalleled level of customer service.
This is why the Store Log Flog chat feature is such a crucial component in your customer service approach. When new tenants are looking for storage in their area, they can jump on the app and discuss their requirements and you can be prepared with a range of questions to build of picture of this person, for example:
- What’s creating your need for storage at the moment?
- How long do you wish to store your items for?
- What’s your biggest consideration when storing these items?
Through these three simple questions, you’ve learnt why your prospect requires storage, how long they’re likely to be with you and the kind of value of that these items have. Not only does this allow you to select the best storage solution for this specific customer’s needs, but it also gives you a good idea of the kind of value of the items they wish to store, which is ideal for insurances purposes.
How Can Store Log Flog Help Your Self-Store Business?
As a self-store owner, you can offer our app as an additional service to your tenants, to allow them to create a digital copy of the storage space they’ve been allotted and log exactly where they have stored their belongings.
The app also features a handy integrated chat feature, which allows you to converse with your current and new tenants to ensure that you’re always on hand to answer any question your tenants may have about your service.
By downloading the Store Log Flog app, you have the perfect companion to help your tenants log, map, and store all of their valuable items to give you a view of precisely what is being stored on your premises, and also leave reviews too.
The Store Log Flog app is now available to download for free from Google Play or the Apple Store.
If you’d like to learn more about Store Log Flog, why not contact us today?