Our path, still improving.
Have not cared about online presence other than Google Map pin; most of our locations are in the country (Pop 5,000), great locations, only 2 to 3 competitors. We only do Drive-up storage and no Climate controlled (don’t want to). When we moved to the big city (1mm, 112 competitors) this year, a totally different ball game. Most of these are not our physical competition due to distance, but they are in the same bandwidth on the internet.
Big City Marketing
We’re on a 13,000 vehicle per day local road at a two-way turn intersection, which is great. However, I need a greater online presence since I want to speed up the rent up period. Took two approaches to our big city Marketing:
worked on the 4 “sort by” to get ranked higher. Made quick headway (top 3 of 4- Reviews, Price, Distance- for the area), but still need more progress on the “Recommended” ranking.
Need to figure out how the group at the top is staying at the top, I can’t make the numbers and logic work out. I talked with Sparefoot on the components, but they won’t give me my calculation to the weight which component to work on. No conspiracy theories please. I’m not willing to jump from 1.5 months fee to 3.0 months fee. Trying to do a GAP analysis.
- Move-in %- 75% for 3 months, or is it the number of “Move-Ins”? Is this good or bad? How does it rank against number 1/2/3? We’re ranked number 4 “today” in our zip code. Last week we were number 9.
- Unit Variety and Availability- at the top,
- Reservation rate- % or number? If % is it “Reservations” divided by “Calls”? Can you decipher yours from MySparefoot? Then the same question, what is a great %?
- Distance- at the top for my zip code and area. A given anyways. But doesn’t appear weighted. The three ahead of me are over 10 miles across town. Would think this metric or Algorithm would push them down???? in my zip code.
They said all of the above 4 criteria are weighted the same. The reason I can’t make the “numbers” work. As you rent up (90%), your “Unit Variety/Availability” should go down. Your Reservation rate, if it is Calls versus reservations should also go down as you rent up. Distance- There has to be a greater weighting in a city for a 10-mile difference. In the Country, 10 miles is nothing.
I’m not techy so I took the “easy” way out and hired an SEO company. $3,000 and 6 google ad phone calls later, after 2 months. 3 of them for other companies and other states, we made this program, way smaller ($400 per month). Stopped and re-analyzed the whole google ads. We have 112 locations to compete against. Even “if” we made it to the number one google ad listing, we couldn’t stay there and we would be drowned out by all of the ads/websites. My SEO is great, highly recommended. As he got to know our industry, he is competing against Spare foot and their several companies, plus the other large Box stores websites.
They have bigger SEO groups than just his company. So I said you (SEO) and I can’t win that fight. This is a little unfair of me since it can take 3 to 6 months for your Google Ranking to percolate and I gave it 2 months, but I never saw the benefit, even if we were ranked number 1.
Google YouTube and pictures
When you google mini-storage “Hometown USA”, and look at the “Forest” and not the “Trees”. I see five groupings of ads:
- Google Ads,
- Company Websites,
- Google map and Banner Ads,
I chose to go to the YouTube approach. This and the Pictures jump out from all of the text ads and websites. This then drives back to your website. The “Organic” growth is going well on them. Need to let Google algorithm work for 3 to 6 months to move their ranking up. Thought about the Banner Ads, but the SEO said don’t go there, expensive. Will circle back to that later.
Been improving and working with the SEO, think we are progressing. I’ll have to get some other folks to do a review and see any obvious improvements. Do a comparison against other sites. Been doing a few pushes to drive up it’s Google ranking.
Clark Storage – Best and Most Secured Storage Units in the Area
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