A website is no longer just a placeholder for your storage facility on the internet, it’s an integral part of how you communicate to potential customers what you offer – and if you’re doing a lousy job, you could be saying that they should go elsewhere.
Instead of throwing up a simple, single-page website that repeats what anyone can find on Google Maps (you are on Google Maps, right?) consider it an investment in your business.
97% of consumers looked online for local businesses in 2017, with 12% looking for a local business online every day.
These are some ways you can squeeze out every last drop of value from your website:
Every business owner knows they need to stand out from the competition, so why is your website saying that your storage facility is just like the rest?
Use your website to showcase your expertise, and ultimately, differentiate yourself from your competitors.
Research your competition and ask yourself:
- What makes your facility different and better?
- Why should potential customers choose you to store their stuff, and not the storage facility a mile away?
- What features does your facility have that make it the clear choice?
Once you know the answer to that, make sure visitors to your website see the answer too.
Automate Your Lead Management
With how much of our daily lives revolve around the internet, it’s no surprise that customers are expecting to do more online.
It’s becoming pretty clear: automation is king.
Unsurprisingly, the data supports this: Companies that automate lead management see a 10% or more bump in revenue in 6-9 months time.
So how can you apply that to your website?
Well, while some of your customers will still want to rent the old-fashioned way, more and more will be looking for a way to get everything done through your website.
Gartner, a global research firm, estimates that by 2020, customers will manage 85% of their relationships without talking to a human.
Automating the processes your customers have to go through to rent from you – namely, renting a storage unit and managing it – will increase conversions in a significant way.
If you have portable storage containers for rent at your facility, you can incorporate a rental process on your website that is comparable to PODs. As a national brand, PODs has set the standard that customers expect when renting portable storage online. In order to compete, you'll need to offer a comparable or better experience on your own website.
Just imagine how tempting it will be for a visitor of your website to spend ten minutes signing up and paying for their rental and crossing that off their list. Why wouldn’t you want to offer that to them?
The results speak for themselves
One of StoragePug's clients, Rocky Hill Storage, used to firmly believe that most, if not all of their rentals came from drive-bys.
It turns out, they weren't wrong when their website used to look like this. When comparing to that old version to the new one here, notice how much easier it is to navigate to the rates and bill pay.
Since redesigning their website around a year ago, they have had over 37 online rentals!
Love Your Data
While data can seem like a snoozefest to many people, data is your best friend in the business.
You already use a lot of data in your day-to-day; how much number-crunching does it take to figure out how much you need to charge per unit to make a profit?
You need to treat your website with the same level of care and attention to figure out if what you’re doing is working.
The good news is that many tools that collect and analyze that data are free. To get started, make sure that you’ve got Google Analytics and the Facebook Pixel installed on your website.
Google Analytics will tell you where your traffic is coming from and what is working well on your website.
The Facebook Pixel will give you the ability to retarget ads to people who have already visited your site!
To fully optimize your website, try using a heat-mapping tool, like Hotjar. When people visit your site, Hotjar will collect data about how they’re using it and what their experience is like, and you can use that to improve.
The most important thing, though, is dedicating time and attention to monitoring the data and implementing changes based on what results you see. Having a pile of data is useless if you aren’t figuring out what it means and experimenting with changes to improve.
Optimize Your Engagement
When people visit your website, your top priority is encouraging them to engage with it. This is not only the key to getting them interested, and ultimately converting them into customers, but it also affects how Google ranks your website.
To determine what order websites show up in search results, Google ranks them based on a variety of factors – including how much and how often people engage with the site. If you have a low ranking, you’ll show up on the graveyard page (which is every page past page 1).
Make sure you’re offering a clear call to action to direct visitors to the information they want, such as rentals, reservations, and the ability to pay their account balance. People don’t spend much time on a website as it is, so make sure you give them a clear call to action on the homepage - save the text-heavy company history for the “About Us” page.
In addition to this, optimize your website for search engines (this is referred to as SEO-friendly). Google publishes the technical standards and requirements for getting a good ranking, so don’t ignore it!
Having what you think is a perfect website doesn’t mean much if you’re not getting visitors.
How do you get value out of your website?