How to Choose Self Storage Management Software?
Owing to robust storage management software solutions, running a storage business has never been easier, both in terms of profitability and efficiency. What has presented itself as a challenge, however, is choosing the right option for you. Therefore, we have gathered a few tips on how to choose self storage management software that will fulfill all your operational needs.
The first step toward making a smart decision is ensuring you make an informed and strategic one. The point of implementing these solutions is to make daily tasks, repetitive and mundane operations easier or automated. Consequently, you will be able to concentrate on other aspects of your business, ultimately improving efficacy, efficiency, and customer satisfaction. It will altogether lead to more profit and business growth. The issue lies in the fact that there is a wide range of options available. The key is to pinpoint what your specific needs are to be able to select the right product for you. So, let's go over some of the essential points that will help you decide.
- Essential features
There are many features considered a staple for self storage management software. Task management, reporting and communications tools, pricing, and discounting are some of them. Moreover, pay attention if the software integrates with other systems, for example, access and security. There should be communication among different systems you are using, so your entire business can run smoothly. Also, customer relationship management (CRM) is vital. There are many benefits to it that can significantly improve your customer experience. Therefore, these are an absolute must. So, walk away if the software you are considering lacks any of these features.
The software you choose must have all the crucial features, such as CRM, task management, pricing, and communication tools.
Furthermore, in light of the current pandemic situation, there is another feature you should consider invaluable. You will benefit tremendously from a software solution that will allow a contact-free way of working, keeping your staff and customers safe. If the software features options that will enable you to facilitate contactless move-ins, that is a significant advantage. With this in mind, look for features such as touch-free payment.
When it comes to appropriate payment features, they should provide you with more control, thus improving security. In the digital world that we live in, fraud is increasingly common. For that reason, this feature is critical.
- Finding a suitable option
As is usually the case, there is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to storage management software. Therefore, you will have to determine the right program for you, mostly based on your business size. Smaller, single-facility operators will benefit from a more straightforward solution to keep all data in one place. On the other hand, a larger one, with multiple facilities, will be better off with a more robust solution with numerous features.
The size of your operation is key to deciding the right self storage management software for you.
Moreover, you should consider how widely spread the software is, how popular it is among other companies. A good rule of thumb is: the more operators use it, the better chances it fulfills all the business requirements. However, there are a few more tips to follow before making the final decision:
- Check reviews on Capterra - it is especially important to note the downsides mentioned.
- Make sure software has excellent support - Sometimes, software features excellent options, but the support is terrible.
- Investigate the ease of migration - sometimes, vendors will make it extremely difficult to switch to another solution.
- See if the software supports your native language - it is always a plus as it will help both your staff and customers use it comfortably.
- Ask for a trial extension - if you haven't had the chance to thoroughly explore the software, this is necessary. Moreover, if a vendor refuses to provide it, the chances are they will say no to most of your customization needs.
- Choosing the vendor
Your software provider is just as important as the software itself. An excellent program is worth very little if customer support and follow-up care are not up to high standards. Also, it would be best if you strive for a partnership relationship with your vendor. Here are some tips on how to evaluate them:
- Examine the vendor's portfolio of products. It's important to know if they will be able to support your evolving needs. You should look for a supplier that can grow with your business. Even if you are looking for one product at the moment, try to envision how your future needs will develop and how well your vendor can respond to them.
- Always know the vendor's size. As we have mentioned, the more clients, the better chances the software checks all the boxes. However, there is a downside to this you must consider. The more clients the supplier has, the less attention you may get. On the other hand, be careful with start-ups as well. They can promise more than they can deliver. So, mid-sized ones are probably your safest bet as they can provide a better customer experience.
The software you choose and the vendor who supplies it are equally important. The vendor's portfolio, size, customer support, and overall approach to doing business are key points you need to consider.
- Toxic vendors
- Beware of toxic vendors. Such software providers behave like sharks. They eat competition, decimate start-ups with money, poach valuable resources, get into aggressive legal encounters. Make no mistake, their goal is a considerable market share, not customer satisfaction.
- Check if the provider takes existing customers' input into consideration. The software is also evolutionary, so vendors should keep in mind that different age groups provide different insights. People aged 25-35 can give better reviews on mobile applications. Those in the 35-45 age group will provide a better assessment of the website and software. Finally, people aged 45-55 can better evaluate how the software addresses problems. A wise vendor will consider all of this to create the best fit solution.
The question of how to choose self storage management software for your business boils down to determining what size your business is and what your overall business goals are. Then you should consider all the features software has. Finally, make sure you have adequately evaluated the vendor. You want a tool to help you deal with common problems and a company that can accompany you on your business growth journey. Although there is no single solution that will suit everyone, these guidelines will hopefully help you make an informed decision.