Readiness to address consumer concerns, awareness about consumer behavior and willingness to offer the right information at the right time -is all that it takes to turn a simple conversation into a sale. That’s what the research and insights arm of Marchex Inc. revealed in a new series called “Industry Trends,” while proffering advice to owners of self-storage facilities.
In a quarterly release that spotlights data in a particular business vertical, Marchex, a mobile advertising technology company, noted that almost 70 percent of callers enquiring about self-storage facilities were likely to reserve, confirm or book an appointment if questions about video surveillance, climate control and privacy were properly addressed.
“In our analysis of more than 20,000 phone calls, it was clear that storage facilities aren’t just a place to stash and forget about your spare belongings,” said John Busby, senior vice president of the Marchex Institute, the research and insights arm of Marchex. “People really value safety, protection and privacy when choosing where to store their stuff.”
It was important for self-storage owners to understand that there is a regional pattern in consumer interest. Consumers in Washington valued privacy greatly as did those in a few other regions. However, when it came to climate-control features, Nevada topped the list. Owners needed to take these factors into account while providing information and assurance.
Another fact that came to light was that consumers preferred morning appointments to discuss transactions. The interest for afternoon and evening appointments dwindled and during those times consumers also appeared more indecisive about buying a storage facility.
This in turn highlights another important factor that impacts the bottom line – availability of staff to field phone calls. According to Busby, “the self-storage industry is dominated by small business owners, and many of them don’t have the capacity to field calls all day”- which could make them miss out on opportunities.
This is where the Marchex data can help, said Busby, for it can at least tell owners the most appropriate times to staff phone lines and, more specifically, what features their employees should be ready to answer questions about.
According to the Self Storage Association, an industry trade group, the U.S., with more than 52,000 storage facilities, boasts the largest share of the world’s units. So owners would do well to pay attention to data from Marchex, if they want to convert ‘more conversations into sales.’