Gabfocus Episode 10: Self Storage Tools - Our Favorite Resources

Gabfocus Episode 10: Self Storage Tools - Our Favorite Resources

In this session, our panelists break down their favorite self storage tools they use for budgeting, training their managers, customer surveys, social media tools, competitor insights, call centers, customer text messaging, online visibility, and more! Whether you are a manager of a facility or opening one for the first time, Denise and Jess offer tools you can use to take your facility to the next level.

Moderators: Tommy Nguyen and Melissa Huff
Featured Speakers: Denise Bowley and Jess Casto 

Category: Self Storage
Focus: Owners and Managers
Aired: June 25, 2020
Duration: 1:12:42

Gabfocus Sessions

Gabfocus Sessions are virtual workshops for self storage owners, managers, and operators. Brought to you by the team behind Gabfest: StoragePug and MR Management.

Each session features hand-picked industry pros who will dive deep into relevant topics surrounding our industry, share best practices, and explore trends in the market. It's our hope that these sessions help you navigate your self storage business better during these uncertain times.

Want more tools for your managers? Join us on Gabfocus weekly on Thursdays.

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Top Questions Answered in this session

  1. How do you keep track of your budget?
  2. Do you have any favorite bookkeeping software to keep track of your finances?
  3. What type of training tools do you have for new staff and what you found is the most effective tool. Manual? Online training tool? Certifications?
  4. What are best practices for exit surveys?
  5. We have always done our own collection calls and process. Have you discovered any resources to make this easier?
  6. What is the best solution for capturing after hour calls and calls over the weekend? What tools or resources are available for capturing every call?
  7. What are the most important online tools I should be using?
  8. What is "Google My Business" which many experts recommend, and how does it improve business?
  9. What is the biggest hurdle for true online rental?

These are just a few of the questions answered during this session! Get your pen and paper ready!

Live Poll Results: What tools are most important to provide to your employees?




Meet your speakers


Jess Casto

Digital Marketing Consultant


Denise Bowley

Owner at Self Storage Science


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Resources from this session

Awesome Quotes

“Don’t be afraid to use Quickbooks, don’t feel like you have to go all the way fancy. With that said, have a very reliable CPA on hand especially if you are managing multiple facilities.” - Tommy Pug
“Google my Business is the number one online tool you should be using.” - Jess Casto
“SurveyMonkey lets us take all of that data and plug it back into our business to understand where our marketing dollars need to be driving to and what things we can get better at from a customer experience standpoint.” - Jess Casto
“It is important to put as many people on autopay as you can when they rent because that is where your delinquency begins.” - Denise Bowley
“When that late fee comes up and the customer comes in, you don’t waive it. You teach your managers from the beginning to explain that they don’t have that authorization in the system, it helps the manager to have some level of accountability within the business to know that they’re doing what’s right for the business.” - Jess Casto
“If your website is optimized for ‘self storage’ you are actually missing out on a ton of potential traffic and you should actually be optimized for ‘storage units’ because that is what your customer is searching.” - Tommy Pug

Resources Mentioned

Question of the Week

We asked our panelists: What are your top “must-have” storage tools or software?

Today, before I do anything - number one, I want a website. That’s the first thing I do.” - Denise Bowley 
“It’s gotta be Google My Business.” - Jess Casto
“Hands down, having an online presence is the must-have tool, especially today with the hands-free, contactless rentals.” - Melissa Huff
“Knowing how to influence how people find you online with Spyfu, it is the must-have product especially as we get stronger and stronger into competitive markets.” - Jess Casto

Gabfocus Takeaway

There are hundreds of different tools that you can use for your self storage facility. The key is finding the right products and tools that fit your team, budget, and property. Whether it be setting up a budget, training new managers, or taking control of your online presence, our experts share what tools they have used over the years to help keep their properties thriving.

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