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Do I Need a Self Storage Welcome Package?

August 9, 2022

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Self Storage Welcome Package
5 min

You’ve made renting easy, great! Now you’re wondering if you made it a bit too easy.

Well, probably not - easy is good, and customers love easy! But you do need to make sure the customer understands certain things about your rental agreement, your facility, and your expectations.

Welcome packets are a great way to bring customers on board with your business, and ensure you’re all on the same page!

So, your tenant has found your beautiful self storage website. They’re impressed by the panoramic pictures and convinced by the amenities you offer and the price you’ve set. Your rental process is so convenient that they’ve rented and paid for a unit in about ten minutes!

This is exactly how you want your tenant acquisition process to go. There are just a few things that don’t quite fit, which means you’ll need to cover them elsewhere. A well-prepared welcome package can do just that!

 

Do I Need a Self Storage Welcome Package?

New tenant welcome packages are a broad category of information, marketing, and personal touches you can send to customers when they first start renting with you. Most of the time, it’s not necessary to give your new tenants a welcome packet - though it can always be beneficial. There are a few times when you should strongly consider sending one, though.

Welcome packages have two purposes:

  1. Make your new tenants feel welcome and taken care of.
    1. This contributes to a positive customer experience. A thoughtful welcome package can improve your tenant’s perception of your company, which in turn makes them more likely to do business with you in the future.
    2. It also makes your tenants more likely to refer their friends to your business and leave good reviews. Good reviews and referrals are the best marketing tool your business has!
  2. Convey information to your new tenants in a clear and digestible way.
    1. Your tenants need to know a lot of basic information about the rental relationship; how much do they owe, when do they owe it, what can they store, whom do they pay, what happens if they don’t pay, etc. And very few tenants will read your rental agreement.
    2. The better your tenants understand how your relationship will work, the better they’ll feel about your business. Preventing misunderstandings will go a long way to cultivating a good customer experience!

So, if you’re having trouble with either of these two points, consider adding a welcome package to your tenant onboarding process.

Keep your business up-to-date! Download our Top Self Storage Trends List now.

If you find yourself having to explain the terms of your agreement to upset tenants, the problem may be that they didn’t understand it clearly when they signed your rental agreement. 

(It’s also possible that your tenant is just a problem child, but we can’t help with that.)

The only thing you can do to try to prevent tenants from being upset in this manner is to make sure they understand how your relationship will function. Many people are renting self storage units in moments of distress - divorce, death, and displacement. That stress makes it even less likely that they’re going to read the fine print of your rental agreement. Then, if you have to auction their unit off, they can feel like you’re cheating them.

So, what should your welcome package contain to fix this?

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What Should Be in a Self Storage Welcome Package?

To tackle the two points above, your self storage welcome package should include:

  1. Something to convey your appreciation. They chose your business out of many options, and without tenants, you wouldn’t be able to operate.
    1. Consider a little gift bag, personalized if possible
    2. Coupons to local businesses are a great way to connect with your small-business neighbors
    3. A personalized, hand-signed thank you note shows that you think of them as individuals, rather than just a transaction
  2. A short, digestible version of your rental agreement. Be very clear with your tenants that this does not legally replace your rental agreement, but should make it easier to understand.
    1. Bulleted lists are great for this. Highlight when rent is due, how much it is, and what happens if payment isn’t received
    2. Adding graphics can help with engagement if you have the capacity
    3. You should also spotlight your expectations of the tenant, including cleanliness, behavior on the property, and anything else that you encounter problems with
  3. Bonus: Include a request to review your facility! You can use your best judgment with these - if a tenant leaves the property upset about something, maybe leave the request out.

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Making Welcome Packages Easy with Software

Here at StoragePug, we’re in favor of automating everything that can be automated, but we draw the line at baskets of muffins. Muffins must exist in the physical realm, and if a business sends me a picture of electronic muffins, I will be miffed.

However!

You can still send a nice welcome package entirely online, and almost entirely automated. Welcoming tenants with gift cards or coupons to local businesses is a great way to establish some ties with nearby businesses (who in exchange may be willing to keep your business cards or an ad up in their window!) 

I, for one, would be happy with a gift card to the Muffin Mansion.

Use your property management software to keep track of who has been sent a welcome package and who still needs one, as well as notes about the new tenant. If you can remember the small talk you’ve had about the tenant’s dog or an upcoming vacation, you can offer them a much more personalized experience and improve their perception of your business.

Fully online welcome packages can be emailed through your property management system. You can save a template, populate it with the customer’s name, then add a personal touch before you send it off. This may not have quite the same impact as a gift basket waiting in the new unit, but the time you save could well be worth it!

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Onboarding Tenants and Customer Experience

The reason these steps are so important is that they will directly impact the experience your new tenant has with your business. A good customer experience is the best marketing strategy any small business can have.

Getting good reviews on Google, Bing, and Yelp will put you near the top of the local search results, and getting good recommendations will send family and friends of your tenants to your business.

Keep your business up-to-date! Download our Top Self Storage Trends List now.

Bad experiences do the opposite. A good welcome package will help you promote good experiences (free muffins!) and avoid bad experiences (misunderstandings and arguments). 

Your facility and your business are uniquely yours. You may come up with wonderfully engaging ways to present the information, thank your tenants, and gather reviews that are entirely personal to your area and your tenants! 

If you can, great. If you can’t, focus on conveying the information your tenant needs to know - and a little token of appreciation is never wrong!

For more discussion on communication and self storage software, check out:

At StoragePug, we build self storage websites that make it easy for new customers to find you and easy for them to rent from you.

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